I had this problem where in grafana I wanted to show the increase of a gauge or counter over time. I didn’t want to show the absolute value, but the increase.
(I wanted to embed more pictures, but couldn’t because I can only embed 5 in my first post. Head to my blog to see it in full.)
There is no builtin function to handle showing increases where a time serie possibly has null values and drops, like for example after a deploy where it starts from 0. So here are the steps to achieve this.
Say you have this time series:
and you want to produce this:
We go from 7 to 8 at the start, then go from 0 to 5 at the end, that makes a total increase of 6.
First, you need to duplicate the time series with an offset of
$__interval, here I plot both without (A) and with offset (B):
A: sum (my_gauge) B: sum (my_gauge offset $__interval)
A naive A-B operation does not produce a good result: the total is wrong and we can see negative values
A: sum (my_gauge) B: sum (my_gauge offset $__interval) C: $A - $B
let’s first get rid of negative values:
C: ($A - $B) >= 0
The total is better, but it’s not 6 just yet.
You can see where the vertical bar is, we do not register the jump from 0 to 1, because there is no data point. To add data points, we need to do this:
A: sum (my_gauge) or vector (0) B: sum (my_gauge offset $__interval) or vector (0)
If we again print the difference, we can see the total is accurate:
C: ($A - $B) >= 0
(see blog for pic, sry, couldn’t post more than 2 links…)
But there’s a not pleasing gap there when the values drop. The final calculation is:
C: ($A - $B) >= 0 or vector (0)
The actual calculation I have is this
beautiful horrendous formula:
( (sum (my_gauge) or vector (0)) - (sum (my_gauge offset $__interval) or vector (0)) ) >= 0 or vector (0)
which gives the result.