DEMO: Integrating GCP Operations Monitoring with Grafana
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This course shows you how to monitor your operations on GCP. It starts with monitoring dashboards. You'll learn what they are and how to create, list, view, and filter them. You'll also see how to create a custom dashboard right in the GCP console.

The course then moves on to monitoring and alerting, where you'll learn about SLI-based alerting policies and third-party integrations. You'll also learn about SLO monitoring and alerting, along with integrating GCP monitoring with products like Grafana. We’ll wrap things up by touching on SIEM tools that are used to analyze audit and flow logs.

This course contains a handful of demos that give you a practical look at how to apply these monitoring techniques on the GCP platform. If you have any feedback relating to this course, feel free to reach out to us at

Learning Objectives

  • Create, list, view, and filter dashboards
  • Configure notifications, including through third-party channels
  • Learn about SLI- and SLO-based alerting and monitoring
  • Integrate GCP operations monitoring with Grafana
  • Analyze logs with SIEM tools

Intended Audience

This course is intended for anyone who wishes to learn how to manage GCP Operations monitoring.


To get the most out of this course, you should already have some experience with Google Cloud Platform.





Hello, and welcome back. In a real world and on exams, you are going to need to know how to integrate Google Cloud monitoring with different third-party tools. What I want to do here is show you briefly how to integrate Google Cloud monitoring with Grafana.

On the screen here, I'm logged into my Grafana Instance. I'm actually using the cloud version, the hosted Instance, of Grafana. Now to integrate Google Cloud monitoring with Grafana, I need to add Google Cloud monitoring as a data source. Now to do that from Grafana, what I need to is select the gear here, and then click on data sources.

We can see I don't have any data sources added yet. So we'll go ahead and add a data source. Now this version of Grafana has not yet caught up with the collapse or rename of Stackdriver into Google Cloud monitoring. So what that means is when I add this data source, I'm still going to select Stackdriver as the data source.

Now at some point, I believe in 7.1, Grafana actually changes this, but their hosted version hasn't caught up yet. So we're going to select Stackdriver for this demonstration, but in a production environment, you may see a Google Cloud listed here. So we'll go ahead and select Stackdriver.

Now we have two ways that we can authenticate here. We can upload a service account key file, or we can use the GCE default service account. Now I can only use the GCE default service account if Grafana is running on a Google compute engine virtual machine. In this case, it's not. So what I need to do is upload a service account key file.

So what I'll do here is I'll scroll down to the bottom. And see this JSON field here? This is where I'm going to paste my service account key JSON file. Now I could also upload the service account key file here as well, but before I do either one of these, I need to create the key file. So what I'm going to do is bounce over into my IAM & Admin console in Google Cloud Platform for my project.

Now for this demonstration, what I'm going to do is add a specific key for this project, and it's going to be a JSON key. So we'll create the key, and it actually downloads into my downloads folder. 

So what I'll do here is I'll close this out. And then what I'll do is I'll bounce back over into my Grafana settings and upload my service key file. And this is the one we just created, and we'll upload it. And then we'll save and test. We get the green on both ends here, which means we've successfully added our authentication method for Grafana to communicate back to Google Cloud monitoring.

So we'll go back, and we can see Stackdriver is now our default data source. And now that we have our default data source configured as Stackdriver, or in this case the Google Cloud monitoring, what we can do is go in and create a dashboard. We'll go ahead and add a new panel, and we can see here we have a selection here where we can actually choose metrics or SLO for service level objectives. We'll leave this at metrics. We can see that our project is already selected here, and we can go ahead and select a service.

So we'll take a look at compute here, and we'll look at the dropped bytes metric. And we can see that we're now pulling in data into Grafana. We'll go ahead and save our panel, and we'll just call it MyDashboard. And we'll save it, and we now have a dashboard with one panel here. And what we can do with a panel is we can edit this panel and give it a title here. And we'll just call it Dropped Bytes. And we'll save it. And now we have our dashboard called MyDashboard, and we have a chart here, which is really a panel, called Dropped Bytes that shows the dropped byte count for our VMs.

Now the process for integrating Google Cloud monitoring with other third-party tools will obviously be different, but in this case, you now know how to integrate and use Google Cloud monitoring as a data source for Grafana.

About the Author
Learning Paths

Tom is a 25+ year veteran of the IT industry, having worked in environments as large as 40k seats and as small as 50 seats. Throughout the course of a long an interesting career, he has built an in-depth skillset that spans numerous IT disciplines. Tom has designed and architected small, large, and global IT solutions.

In addition to the Cloud Platform and Infrastructure MCSE certification, Tom also carries several other Microsoft certifications. His ability to see things from a strategic perspective allows Tom to architect solutions that closely align with business needs.

In his spare time, Tom enjoys camping, fishing, and playing poker.