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Live activity monitoring

Get real-time application performance metrics with NGINX Plus

See it in action

Ever needed to know what’s going on right now with your NGINX Plus server? Do you suspect a DDoS attack, or are users reporting errors from your website? NGINX Plus includes a real‑time activity monitoring interface that provides key load and performance metrics. Using a simple RESTful JSON interface, it’s very easy to connect these stats to live dashboards and third‑party monitoring tools.

NGINX Plus has a graphical dashboard with key performance numbers
The NGINX Plus dashboard provides critical insights into application performance (live demo)

The live activity monitoring data is generated by the NGINX Plus API. You can configure live activity monitoring as follows:

server {
    listen 8080;

    location /api {
        api write=on;
        # directives limiting access to the API
    }

    location = /dashboard.html {
        root   /usr/share/nginx/html;
    }

    # Redirect requests made to the old dashboard
    location = /status.html {
        return 301 /dashboard.html;
    }
}

The write=on parameter is required if you want to use the API to reconfigure upstream groups or clear the set of collected statistics. It is not required to retrieve status information.

It is recommended to restrict access to /api. The NGINX Plus Admin Guide describes appropriate security schemes in more detail.

In Detail – The Live Activity Monitoring JSON Feed

When you access /api, NGINX Plus returns a JSON document containing the current activity data:

  • /api/3/nginx/ – Basic version, uptime, and identification information
  • /api/3/connections/ – Total active and idle connections
  • /api/3/http/server_zones/ – Request and response counts for each HTTP status zone
  • /api/3/http/upstreams/ – Request and response counts, response time, health‑check status, and uptime statistics per server in each HTTP upstream group
  • /api/3/http/caches/ – Instrumentation for each named cache zone

The 3 represents the version of the NGINX Plus API. You can drill down to obtain subsets of the data, or single data points using a RESTful approach.

For more information, check out the reference documentation.

External monitoring

You can also export NGINX Plus metrics to your choice of external monitoring tools. NGINX Plus currently integrates with:

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