Kibana Analytics – What is it?
Kibana is a powerful visualizing and analytics tool that has grown in popularity over the recent years. It is used for log and time-series analytics, application monitoring, and operational intelligence use cases. Data visualization helps users to monitor the environment, detect a pattern, and take actions when detecting anomalous behavior. Kibana offers a variety of easy-to-use features such as histograms, pie charts, heat maps, line graphs and geospatial support for users to choose from, making it a versatile and popular visualization tool.
Kibana works hand-in-hand with Elasticsearch, a preferred analytics and search engine. This makes Kibana the go-to for visualization of data stored in Elasticsearch. Kibana in an integral part of the ELK stack that comprises of Elasticsearch, Logstash, with Kibana.
Within the ELK stack, Elastic search is used to store, search and analyze chunks of data. The process takes place real time. Logstash is used for collecting and monitoring logs from different sources. It is the data pipeline of Elasticsearch. Together, the combination of the three helps to monitor, visualize, and analyze log data.
Easy to setup open source tool:
Kibana is an open source tool and is relatively easy to integrate. It comes with the ability to create predesigned dashboards and reports that can be accessed based on the security level of a user.
Kibana offers a variety of visualizations such as graphs, bar charts, line graphs, histograms, heat maps, pie charts, donut charts, and much more. Its capacity to generate visuals extends to other data types such as text and geospatial data too.
Interactive analytics dashboards:
Analytics with Kibana is simple and appealing to the eye. Its dashboards are interactive, user-friendly, and flexible. Visualizations can be customized on the fly based on the filters selected by the user. The data that appears on the dashboard is real time and therefore offers true insight.
Kibana offers users the ability to generate detailed and insightful reports using its dashboards. These reports can be viewed both on the dashboard and downloaded in PDF and DOC formats as well.
The Beginnings of Kibana
The name Kibana was coined by its creator Rashid Khan. The story behind the name is very unique. Rashid wanted to name his visualization tool in a foreign tool. After much thought, he settled on using the literal translation of the term – Log data. The closest word he could associate with that term was ‘wood hut’. In Swahili, a wood hut is called Kibana. Thus, the name stuck.
Kibana was first used in PeopleTools 8.57 for technical administrators to analyze system and index metrics. With the next PeopleTools release, Kibana became an integrated part of the PeopleSoft user interface. Kibana comes with the advantage that only users with authorization can view the analytics. The authorization is determined by their security clearance in PeopleSoft. This tool works great on both structured and unstructured data and helps users to identify and analyze relationships between data.
When to Use Kibana?
Kibana is optimal for visualizations and insights in the following scenarios:
- When data volume is extremely high
- When performance is of great importance
- When information needs to be analyzed and tracked over the function of time
- When ad hoc reports need to be created
- When real-time analysis is required
- When data security based on user level is of concern
Features of Kibana
Kibana is used widely in PeopleSoft visualization scenarios across the globe today. It has become one of the most sought-after methods of visualization and data analysis today. A comprehensive list of all the features that Kibana offers are:
Kibana works well in situations when the volume of data that needs to be processed is high. It allows users to dynamically zoom in and out of data subsets, toggle with time functions and drill-down several levels on reports generated to obtain actionable insights.
Pre-built Aggregations and Filters
Kibana allows users to run histograms, top-n queries and locate trends with just a few clicks.
Kibana has a machine-learning component that enables it to detect hidden anomalies in vast volumes of data. This feature can help users to identify root causes to certain patterns/ problems that are occurring.
Secure Sharing and Collaboration
Kibana dashboards allows restricted user access, limiting sensitive and classified information to secure strata users of the organization. These security measures stay in control even whole sharing and collaborating over data.
Elastic Kibana allows you to uncover the relationship between various data points. Kibana offers a powerful graphical exploration API that allows users to explore the data ocean stored in Elasticsearch.
Kibana’s geospatial features allows users to seamlessly visualize geographical information and view the results over a map. Kibana supports shape files and baseman tiles that are key to geodata visualization.
According to Kibana creator, Rashid Khan, “Canvas is a composable, extendable, and a creative space for live data.” It is rich with colors, text, and shapes that can be used to create unique brand visuals.