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IRONdb has native endpoints for accepting OpenTSDB-style data.

Ingestion Format

There are 2 methods for ingesting OpenTSDB data into IRONdb:

  1. RESTful HTTP POST of OpenTSDB JSON formatted datapoint(s)
  2. Network socket listener akin to the normal OpenTSDB telnet method

For the HTTP method, POST a JSON object (or an array of JSON objects) to the RESTful API endpoint (see the section below - Writing OpenTSDB with HTTP). Each datapoint should be encoded as follows:

"metric": "metric_name",
"timestamp": timestamp,
"value": value,
"tags": {
"tag_key": "tag_value",
"tag_key2": "tag_value2",
"tag_keyn": "tag_valuen"

At least one tag key/value pair is required. Multiple datapoints can be sent as a JSON array, separated by commas, and the entire POST enclosed in square brackets.

For example:

"metric": "",
"timestamp": 1544678300,
"value": 637,
"tags": {
"datacenter": "east"
"metric": "",
"timestamp": 1544688100,
"value": 3475,
"tags": {
"datacenter": "west"

In the case of the telnet method, telnet put commands in the normal OpenTSDB format are accepted:


At least one tag key/value pair must be included. For example:


If you desire higher resolution data capture, you can suffix the timestamp with a period, followed by the number of milliseconds in the second, or simply just use 13 numeric digits without the period (the last three digits will become the millseconds). For example:


Or just:


These two examples mean 123 milliseconds into the timestamp 1480371964 or November 28, 2016 10:26:04 and 123ms PM UTC

Note that, while it resembles a floating point number, this is not a float.

For data safety reasons, we recommend that you use the RESTful POST interface to send OpenTSDB-formatted JSON data. The network socket listener provides no feedback to the sender about whether or not data was actually ingested (or indeed even made it off the sender machine and was not stuck in an outbound socket buffer) because there is no acknowledgement mechanism on a raw socket.

The HTTP interface, on the other hand, will provide feedback about whether data was safely ingested and will not respond until data has actually been written by the underlying database.


Both of the interfaces require you to namespace your OpenTSDB data. This lets you associate a UUID/Name and numeric identifier with the incoming metrics. This is useful, for example, if you want to use a single IRONdb installation to service multiple different internal groups in your organization but keep metrics hidden across the various groups.

All metrics live under a numeric identifier (you can think of this like an account_id). Metric names can only be associated with an "account_id". This allows you have separate client instances that segregate queries for metric names, or combine them all together under a single "account_id", or even separate your internal groups but recombine them under the client for visualization purposes. It's really up to you.

Furthermore, IRONdb requires associating incoming OpenTSDB data with a UUID and Name to make OpenTSDB data match data ingested from native sources more closely on the Circonus platform. We hide the complexity of this on the rendering side, so you only have to worry about this mapping on the ingestion side. This UUID can be created using uuidgen on a typical UNIX(like) system or via any external tool or website that generates well-formed, non-nil UUIDs.

When we store these metric names inside IRONdb, we prefix them with our standard collection category ("reconnoiter" will be automatically assigned) and the "Name" of the check. You can see this in the examples below in more detail.

Adding these additional fields allow us to disambiguate metric names from potential duplicate names collected from other sources.

Optional Configuration

OpenTSDB ingestion will, by default, accept timestamps up to 1 year in the past. This value may be changed through configuration.

Writing OpenTSDB Data with HTTP

OpenTSDB data is sent by POSTing a JSON object or an array of JSON objects using the format described above to the OpenTSDB ingestion endpoint:


For example:

This will place all metrics under account_id 1 with that UUID and call them dev.

This will place all metrics under account_id 1 with that UUID and call them prod.

Writing OpenTSDB Data with Network Listener

The network listener requires that we associate an account_id, uuid, and name with a network port. This is added to the IRONdb configuration file during initial installation, for the default OpenTSDB text protocol port (4242). Additional stanzas may be added, associating different IDs with different ports to segregate incoming traffic.

    <listener address="*" port="4243" type="opentsdb">

You can then use:

echo " `date +%s` 1 cpu=1" | nc 4243

to send metrics to IRONdb, and it will store the datapoint under the supplied metric name with the account, uuid, and name that was provided by the configuration for the port that was used.