Common Questions when troubleshooting your trace data:
If you’re not seeing the complete trace, where you seem to be missing spans within the trace, it could be one of several reasons.
You must set the timestamp to the start of the span and provide the duration of the span as a part of the span record. Within your system, double check that the timestamp is being set correctly. For example, not set to 1970-01-01T00:00:00 or some other unexpected value.
Once you have verified the timestamps are set correctly, be aware that we currently only locate spans in the time range of the original query.
So if, for example, you do a query of “Last 30 minutes” and then select a
trace.trace_id, we only locate the spans in that 30 minute window.
If some of the span timestamps are older than that, you won’t see them.
Ensure the query time window is large enough to show all the spans within your trace.
Honeycomb can accept data in either Honeycomb’s JSON format over HTTP, or as OTLP format over gRPC/HTTP. Make sure that your Exporter is configured to export trace data to Honeycomb. Try running an OpenTelemetry Collector in Docker to confirm that data is being exported correctly.
Depending on your configuration, field names may be slightly different. In addition, you can manually select columns as tracing fields, as explained in changing the trace schema.
|Standard Tracing Fields||Legacy Zipkin Fields|
When Honeycomb isn’t recognizing your traces, it’s typically caused by a few common pitfalls.
First, to verify that Honeycomb is correctly detecting your trace, check that the trace.trace_id field is hyperlinked. To do this, select trace.trace_id in the GROUP BY window and COUNT in the VISUALIZE window.
If the trace.trace_id field looks like it does below - as a quoted string - Honeycomb is not properly recognizing your traces.
Honeycomb recognizes a dataset as a tracing dataset by the existence of the column “trace.parent_id”. You must send at least one event that has the column “trace.parent_id” in it or Honeycomb will not recognize the dataset as a tracing dataset and will not show traces.
But, remember that root spans should not have the column “trace.parent_id” in order to be recognized as root spans.
This likely raises a question for you: what if I’m sending a traces that only have a single span? As root spans, they’re not allowed to have a “trace.parent_id” column if they’re to be detected properly, so how will my dataset get a trace.parent_id column?
If this is your situation (and it very well may be if you’re experimenting with tracing), just send in any event with a column trace.parent_id.
All you need is one event to be sent into Honeycomb with
trace.parent_id as a field and the column will be created.
Then, Honeycomb will properly recognize your dataset as a tracing dataset.
Alternately, by manually changing the trace schema, you can ensure that the trace schema is recognized.
Every trace event must have a defined trace identifier (
trace.trace_id), a span identifier (
trace.span_id), and a duration (
trace.span_id must both be strings; the duration must be a number, measuring milliseconds.
If the tracing view appears to show out of order spans, then there are gaps in the layout of the spans or the root span is missing.
There are a number of reasons why spans in a trace may appear out of order or have strange time offsets.
When sending trace events into Honeycomb, you must include a “timestamp” field in the event that represents the start time of the span.
If you do not do this, Honeycomb will set the timestamp for the event to when that event was received by our collectors. This could cause the spans in a trace to appear out of order or have strange time offsets.
The root span for any given trace must have no field for “trace.parent_id” in its event. If all of the spans in a trace have a “trace.parent_id”, Honeycomb will not show a root span for that trace.
Honeycomb identifies which span is the root span by its absence of the column “trace.parent_id”. If all of your span events have a “trace.parent_id” column, then Honeycomb assumes the root span is missing.
Thus, first, ensure that your root spans have no “trace.parent_id” field and validate that your child spans have their “trace.parent_id” and “id” set properly as well.
You must include the duration of the span, in milliseconds and in the field
Verify that this duration is being set properly.