To ingest AWS Elastic Load Balancer access
(useful for visualizing questions such as “Which backend servers are taking the
longest to answer requests?” or “Which calls to our app are returning non-200
HTTP status codes?”) Honeycomb provides a tool called
The source is available on Github and instructions for getting started are provided here.
Please use the following instructions to install
wget -q https://honeycomb.io/download/honeyelb/honeyelb_1.91_amd64.deb && \ echo 'b7b68fe8f4f32187a656e2a86c5305c5895ce90c07907acf63c3500aa65a963f honeyelb_1.91_amd64.deb' | sha256sum -c && \ sudo dpkg -i honeyelb_1.91_amd64.deb
wget -q https://honeycomb.io/download/honeyelb/honeyelb-1.91-1.x86_64.rpm && \ echo 'd6778cafc1ee6485c72fb8148e515f32e4a8dda325d53bbd367293b9d1fc95c2 honeyelb-1.91-1.x86_64.rpm' | sha256sum -c && \ sudo rpm -i honeyelb-1.91-1.x86_64.rpm
wget -q -O honeyelb https://honeycomb.io/download/honeyelb/1.91 && \ echo '971bf99e4ca6339c31a46b7af14e2aaafaebb25e6d1e382ddbf47d7624727c45 honeyelb' | sha256sum -c && \ chmod 755 ./honeyelb
honeyelb assumes access to an AWS access key ID and AWS secret access key with
the proper permissions. It will attempt to obtain these via the default profile
~/.aws/config, by the proper environment variables, or by an IAM EC2
instance profile. See the AWS guide on providing
for more details.
See the provided IAM policy
JSON in the
honeyelb repository for one example of a policy which has the proper
permissions. This can be scoped down to more specific resources if desired.
honeyelb can be used interactively (meant for beginning exploration,
debugging credential management, etc.) or as a daemon. Try running some
commands interactively at first to get a feel for using the tool and then
configure it to run as a proper system service when you’re ready to be
To show all ELBs, you can invoke
$ honeyelb ls frontend internal-service service-proxy
To ingest access logs from an ELB, use
honeyelb ingest with one or more ELB
names. Make sure to set your Honeycomb write
key with the
--writekey flag. By default the
events will be sent to a dataset called
Note: If access logs are not configured for the ELB it will throw an error. Please see enable access logs for your Classic Load Balancers to enable this feature.
e.g. Ingesting logs from one ELB named
$ honeyelb --writekey=<key> ingest frontend ...
Ingesting logs from multiple specific load balancers (named
$ honeyelb --writekey=<key> ingest frontend internal-service service-proxy ...
honeyelb ingest without any arguments will use all available (“described”)
load balancers in your configured AWS region. With arguments, it will ingest
logs for the specified load balancer names.
$ honeyelb --writekey=<key> ingest ...ingesting logs from all LBs in DescribeLoadBalancers...
The agent will drop state files (to avoid sending duplicate events) in the
current working directory where it is invoked by default. To modify where these
files are kept, use the
honeyelb, while supporting a interactive workflow for initial discovery and
experimentation, is meant to be invoked as a long-running process by a system
To do this, edit the system init files (Upstart and systemd are supported) installed by the package manager to add the write key.
Once you receive data from
honeyelb you will want to explore it. The
descriptions of the sent fields is available in the AWS documentation for ELB
There is one small difference: the
backend:port keys from
that guide are represented as
backend_authority in the
Here are some suggestions for things to try:
MAX(backend_processing_time)to see which server(s) answered your slowest requests
P99(backend_processing_time)to see which endpoints (URL paths) take the longest
P99(backend_processing_time)to see which ELBs returned the most HTTP status code 200, 404, 500 etc. responses
MIN()to see when backends have timed out (timeouts are represented by -1 response time in the ELB access logs)