Book Image

Kibana Essentials

Book Image

Kibana Essentials

Overview of this book

Table of Contents (15 chapters)
Kibana Essentials
About the Author
About the Reviewers

Chapter 1. An Introduction to Kibana

Kibana is a tool that is part of the ELK stack, which consists of Elasticsearch, Logstash, and Kibana. It is built and developed by Elastic. Kibana is a visualization platform that is built on top of Elasticsearch and leverages the functionalities of Elasticsearch.

To understand Kibana better, let's check out the following diagram:

This diagram shows that Logstash is used to push data directly into Elasticsearch. This data is not limited to log data, but can include any type of data. Elasticsearch stores data that comes as input from Logstash, and Kibana uses the data stored in Elasticsearch to provide visualizations. So, Logstash provides an input stream of data to Elasticsearch, from which Kibana accesses the data and uses it to create visualizations.

Kibana acts as an over-the-top layer of Elasticsearch, providing beautiful visualizations for data (structured or nonstructured) stored in it. Kibana is an open source analytics product used to search, view, and analyze data. It provides various types of visualizations to visualize data in the form of tables, charts, maps, histograms, and so on. It also provides a web-based interface that can easily handle a large amount of data. It helps create dashboards that are easy to create and helps query data in real time. Dashboards are nothing but an interface for underlying JSON documents. They are used for saving, templating, and exporting. They are simple to set up and use, which helps us play with data stored in Elasticsearch in minutes without requiring any coding.

Kibana is an Apache-licensed product that aims to provide a flexible interface combined with the powerful searching capabilities of Elasticsearch. It requires a web server (included in the Kibana 4 package) and any modern web browser, that is, a browser that supports industry standards and renders the web page in the same way across all browsers, to work. It connects to Elasticsearch using the REST API. It helps to visualize data in real time with the use of dashboards to provide real-time insights.


In this book, we will use Kibana 4.1.1, which is the latest version of Kibana. It provides a lot of features compared to Kibana 3.

As Kibana uses the functionalities of Elasticsearch, it is easier to learn Kibana by understanding the core functionalities of Elasticsearch. In this chapter, we are going to take a look at the following topics:

  • The basic concepts of Elasticsearch

  • Installation of Java

  • Installation of Elasticsearch

  • Installation of Kibana

  • Importing a JSON file into Elasticsearch