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Dashboards Query Language (DQL)

You can use the Dashboards Query Language (DQL) in Circonus to search for data and visualizations.

For example, to see all visualizations on a dashboard with visits to a host based in the US, you would enter geo.dest:US into the search field.

Just like Query DSL (Domain Specific Language), DQL has a handful of query types, so use whichever best fits your use case.

This section uses the Sample Web Traffic Log data. To add this sample data in Circonus, choose Home, Add sample data, and then Add data.

Terms query

The most basic query is to just specify the term you're searching for:


To access an object's nested field, list the complete path to the field separated by periods. For example, to retrieve the lat field in the coordinates object:

DQL also supports leading and trailing wildcards, so you can search for any terms that match your pattern.


To check if a field exists or has any data, use a wildcard to see if any results will be returned:


Boolean query

To mix and match or combine multiple queries for more refined results, you can use the boolean operators and, or, and not. DQL is not case sensitive, so AND and and are the same. and response.keyword:200

The following example demonstrates how to use multiple operators in one query.

geo.dest:US or response.keyword:200 and

Remember that boolean operators follow the logical precedence order of not, and, and or, so if you have an expression like the previous example, response.keyword:200 and gets evaluated first, and then compared with geo.dest:US.

To avoid confusion, we recommend using parentheses to dictate the order you want to evaluate in. If you want to evaluate geo.dest:US or response.keyword:200 first, your expression becomes:

(geo.dest:US or response.keyword:200) and

Date and range queries

DQL also supports numeric inequalities.

bytes >= 15 and memory < 15

Similarly, you can use the same method to find a date before or after your query. > indicates a search for a date after your specified date, and < returns dates before.

@timestamp > "2020-12-14T09:35:33"

Nested field query

If you have a document with nested fields, you have to specify which parts of the document you want to retrieve.

Suppose that you have the following document:

"superheroes": [
"hero-name": "Superman",
"real-identity": "Clark Kent",
"age": 28
"hero-name": "Batman",
"real-identity": "Bruce Wayne",
"age": 26
"hero-name": "Flash",
"real-identity": "Barry Allen",
"age": 28
"hero-name": "Robin",
"real-identity": "Dick Grayson",
"age": 15

The following example demonstrates how to use DQL to retrieve a specific field.

superheroes: {hero-name: Superman}

If you want to retrieve multiple objects from your document, just specify all of the fields you want to retrieve.

superheroes: {hero-name: Superman} and superheroes: {hero-name: Batman}

The previous boolean and range queries still work, so you can submit a more refined query.

superheroes: {hero-name: Superman and age < 50}

If your document has an object nested within another object, you can still retrieve data by specifying all of the levels.

justice-league.superheroes: {hero-name:Superman}