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Published: Jan 31, 2019 License: Apache-2.0 Imports: 30 Imported by: 0


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Trickster is a reverse proxy cache for the Prometheus HTTP APIv1 that dramatically accelerates dashboard rendering times for any series queried from Prometheus.

How it works

1. Delta Proxy

Most dashboards request the entire time range of data from the time series database, every time a dashboard loads or reloads. Trickster's Delta Proxy inspects the time range of a client query to determine what data points are already cached, and requests from Prometheus only the data points still needed to service the client request. This results in dramatically faster chart load times for everyone, since Prometheus is queried only for tiny incremental changes on each dashboard load, rather than several hundred data points of duplicative data.

2. Step Boundary Normalization

When Trickster requests data from Prometheus, it adjusts the clients's requested time range slightly to ensure that all data points returned by Prometheus are aligned to normalized step boundaries. For example, if the step is 300s, all data points will fall on the clock 0's and 5's. This ensures that the data is highly cacheable, is conveyed visually to users in a more familiar way, and that all dashboard users see identical data on their screens.

3. Fast Forward

Trickster's Fast Forward feature ensures that even with step boundary normalization, real-time graphs still always show the most recent data, regardless of how far away the next step boundary is. For example, if your chart step is 300s, and the time is currently 1:21p, you would normally be waiting another four minutes for a new data point at 1:25p. Trickster will break the step interval for the most recent data point and always include it in the response to clients requesting real-time data.



Docker images are available on Docker Hub:

$ docker run --name trickster -d -v /path/to/trickster.conf:/etc/trickster/trickster.conf -p tricksterio/trickster

See the 'deploy' Directory for more information about using or creating Trickster docker images.

Kubernetes and Helm

See the 'deploy' Directory for both Kube and Helm deployment files and examples.

Building from source

To build Trickster from the source code yourself you need to have a working Go environment with version 1.9 or greater installed.

You can directly use the go tool to download and install the trickster binary into your GOPATH:

$ go get
$ trickster -origin

You can also clone the repository yourself and build using make:

$ mkdir -p $GOPATH/src/
$ cd $GOPATH/src/
$ git clone
$ cd trickster
$ make build
$ ./trickster -origin

The Makefile provides several targets:

  • build: build the trickster binary
  • docker: build a docker container for the current HEAD
  • clean: delete previously-built binaries and object files

More information

  • Refer to the docs directory for additional info.


Refer to

Who uses Trickster?

As the Trickster community grows, we'd like to keep track of who is using it in their stack. We invite you to submit a PR with your company name and @githubhandle to be included on the list.

  1. Comcast [@jranson]
  2. Selfnet e.V. [@ThoreKr]


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