Host agent

Instana collects data from monitored systems by using a single agent on each host. The agent runs on your hosts to collect and aggregate data from various sensors before it sends the data to the Instana backend.

Host agent types

The Instana Host Agent has two types, dynamic and static, based on whether it can update itself or not.

Host agent modes

The Instana host agent has different modes of operation, in which it monitors its host and the applications that run on it to different extents:

Note: The One-Liner host agent installation method and the Instana Host Agent Docker image accept an extra mode, AWS mode. The AWS mode of the host agent is not used for monitoring hosts. It is the INFRASTRUCTURE mode plus some automatic configuration of AWS data collection, as described in the AWS Agent documentation.

Note: Host agent modes can be changed after the host agent is installed by using the Agent Management Dashboard. For more information, see the Configuring Host Agent Mode documentation.

Changes to the Instana container image repositories

All Instana container images publicly available on Docker Hub have been migrated to the IBM Cloud Container Registry (ICR). The images can be downloaded without authentication from ICR. Images that are made available via Instana's own registry at are not affected by this change.

Affected Instana images

Docker Hub Image IBM Cloud Container Registry Image Note
instana/agent No change for*
instana/aws-fargate-nodejs No change for
instana/google-cloud-run-nodejs No change for

Existing image repositories on Docker Hub's container image registry will be kept around until at least June 2022, but images in these repositories will not be updated anymore. Only the repositories on ICR will receive updates. At some point after July 2022 the Docker Hub image repositories will become unavailable.

Affected Resources

Affected resources are:

Automatic Updates

Once all images are migrated to ICR, Instana will already adopt the migration with the next releases of the affected resources. New installations and updating from the Agent Helm chart, Agent Operator or Autotrace Webhook will already reference the new ICR repositories. Also the static Kubernetes deployment YAML will reference the new agent repository.

Manual Customer Interaction

Customers are affected by this migration and need to adjust manually when pulling Instana images in the following cases:

Manual adjustment means: changing any reference to Instana images to<image-repo-name>. Since Docker Hub is the default registry, images are typically referenced just by the repository name. For example: instana/agent references the dynamic Instana Agent on Docker Hub. This needs to be adjusted to read instana/instrumentation:latest references the Autotrace Webhook instrumentation image. This needs to be adjusted to read