Datadog's Commitment to OpenTelemetry and the Open Source Community | Datadog

Datadog's commitment to OpenTelemetry and the open source community

Author Gordon Radlein
Author Abhishek Singh

Last updated: 2月 2, 2023

The OpenTelemetry (OTel) project is an open source initiative with the goal of providing vendor-neutral standards and tools that enable users to collect telemetry from any source in their environment and send it to any backend. A core tenet of Datadog is to provide a single, unified platform for customers to easily collect and monitor all of their observability data, regardless of where it comes from. From the start, OTel’s value proposition has generated a lot of excitement and support at Datadog.

We also see our excitement for a universal, open source telemetry standard reflected in our customers and the community, as use of OTel has increased rapidly. Our goal is for Datadog to be the best observability platform for OpenTelemetry. We contributed the original instrumentation libraries to the project and are working hard to continue improving Datadog’s support for OTel and the broader open source observability community. In this post, we’ll outline some of the recent efforts we’ve made to provide a first-class product and customer experience for OTel users, and then look at some of the investments currently underway.

Over the past six months, we’ve built a dedicated team to develop Datadog’s support for OpenTelemetry. Since then, we have:

  • Announced general availability for the Datadog Exporter for the OpenTelemetry Collector, which has stable support for OTLP traces and metrics and alpha support for logs.
  • Announced general availability of OTLP ingest in the Datadog Agent, enabling Datadog customers to use OTel SDKs while benefiting from the Datadog Agent’s ecosystem of integrations.
  • Released the Datadog Processor for the OpenTelemetry Collector, providing accurate trace metrics for OTel users.
  • Rolled out W3C trace context support to almost all Datadog APM tracers (with the rest on the way), allowing Datadog and OpenTelemetry instrumentation to collaborate in a mixed environment.
  • Added support for the OpenTelemetry Collector Host Metrics receiver, with plans to continue expanding our infrastructure monitoring support for OTel users.
  • Improved our support for OTel histograms through data quality and visualization improvements.
  • Enabled seamless integration between Datadog RUM and OTel-instrumented backends.

In addition to these, we are currently preparing to roll out:

  • Support for OTel runtime metrics.
  • Additional improvements to our OTel product and feature support that are under active development, such as 128-bit trace IDs and support for the OpenTelemetry API in Datadog tracers.

In addition to building OTel support into the platform, Datadog will continue developing our own instrumentation and innovating across the observability space with products such as Application Security Management, Dynamic Instrumentation, our Continuous Profiler, and Data Streams Monitoring. However, we will also continue investing heavily in the interoperability and accessibility of these products for OpenTelemetry users. This means continuing to provide easy and stable on-ramps for our customers exploring and investing in OTel for their instrumentation needs.

Finally, our support for OpenTelemetry doesn’t stop where our product does. From its start, we have been actively engaged with the OpenTelemetry community. We will continue to ramp up that engagement and contribute back upstream to help improve the project for everyone. Beyond OpenTelemetry, Datadog is committed to open source and open standards. We have consistently looked for ways that we can give back to the community, from releasing projects including Stratus Red Team and glommio, to our Datadog for open source program, to our upstream contributions across the ecosystems we participate in.

We believe OTel will play a large role in the future of observability. We are excited to continue working with the community to help develop the project and make sure Datadog customers can take advantage of the full value that OTel provides.

Update February 2, 2023

Update from Abhishek Singh, VP of Product, APM

The initial intent of this post was to provide an update on the work being done by the Datadog OpenTelemetry team. It’s become clear this post has been interpreted as a response to a recent GitHub pull request. Given that, I’d like to reaffirm that Datadog is committed to supporting OpenTelemetry. As part of that commitment, we’ll continue to improve our communication within the ecosystem. As our OTel roadmap evolved based on customer feedback, we should have closed the loop in the receiver pull request. We apologize for not doing this. As a matter of policy, we will never attempt to compel a community member to withdraw a code contribution. This applies not just to OpenTelemetry but to any and all open source ecosystems we participate in.

While we are not able to officially support the receiver, it is for the community to decide what gets merged, not us. We are excited about the future of OTel, and you can expect more regular updates from us in the future.