Infrastructure map

The Infrastructure map provides an overview of all monitored systems, which are grouped by named zones (two-dimensional colored rectangles). Within each zone are pillars comprised of opaque blocks. Each pillar as a whole represents one agent running on the respective system. Each block within the pillars represents the software components running on that system, and will change color to reflect the component's health. Specific types of components can be processes (a JVM or an Apache process), or specific servers running within those processes, such as a Tomcat server within a JVM.

To zoom in and out use the +/- buttons in the lower right corner, or your mouse wheel.

The map is broken out into a hierarchy from broad to specific: Zone > System/Host > Processes > Components.

Each pillar represents an OS instance (host) and the blocks within them representing all the running processes or components. The default grouping of entities into their zones can be defined either automatically or manually in the configuring the agent - zones. However, users can temporarily reorganize the zoning with the button in the bottom right. A list of different groupings will be available based on container technologies.

Zooming in on a specific pillar reveals visual indicators of the various entities deployed on that system as discovered by Instana's Agent. They show up as the branded icons running down the right side of the pillar.

Instana automatically tracks all versions of an entity, including configuration changes, even if the entity briefly goes offline and back online. In dynamic environments, it is normal for entities to not always be online, so knowing when a specific entity is offline means Instana can tell you which entities are actually available for selection.

Search options

The search bar located at the top of the map of the infrastructure views is part of the dynamic focus feature. This is a central part of our platform.

Change the view

In the lower right corner of the screen you will find three helpful icons which will assist you in getting necessary system information. The default view is component-based and shows you all monitored boxes in their respective zones, as well as the components running inside. You can see what entities are running within an OS instance and if there are any incidents, events, or changes (see the color change in the above image).

What if I have hundreds of servers and I want to know if there are any with high CPU cycles? Or what if I am simply overwhelmed with the number of servers?

The solution is to change the view using the icons for Tag View, Aggregate Metric View, Metric View & 3D, and Table toggle.

The next section explains these different views in greater detail.

Aggregate metrics

The default view on values like latency time or CPU usage displays a single value (based on the end of selected time window). Because live view is the default, you will usually only see the momentary status of any selected metric. To view the aggregation of metrics over the selected time period (e.g. one day), you can use the aggregate metrics view toggle. When the UI is in this mode, all the displayed metrics will show the averaged value over the selected time period, therefore you can see, for example, the average CPU usage over 24 hours.

Display metrics

When you look at the dashboard of the Linux box, for example, you will see metrics like CPU usage or the load average. Those are extremely useful metrics, and you can see them for several systems at once in order to spot which ones are overloaded or stick out, even when there is no warning present.

You can do this by using the metric view. To enable it, simply click on the Show Metrics icon (right to the Show Tags one) and select the metric you would like to see on all the boxes. There are three metrics at the moment you can select:

  1. CPU Load
  2. CPU usage
  3. Free Memory

Once you select a metric it will be displayed in realtime on the various boxes on the map. This enables you to see if, for example, the CPU usage or load is more or less equally spread throughout a deployment zone. The icon itself will be highlighted as long as a metric is selected to remind you that it is turned on.

To disable the metric view and switch back to the default component view, simply click the icon and select reset in the lower right corner.


Some important functions of Instana can be activated using keyboard shortcuts.

  • c : centering the map
  • f : open and focusing the search bar
  • esc : close the sidebar / dashboard that is currently visible
  • shift + ? : open the help dialog for shortcuts