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Using dotnet-counters


Nethermind can be configured to publish its metrics using System.Diagnostics.Metrics. This mechanism is a native tool embedded in .NET Platform. It allows for a low overhead monitoring and reporting. Once .NET Platform metrics are enabled, they can be monitored and collected using dotnet-counters and other tools.


Reporting metrics as System.Diagnostics.Metrics is enabled by passing and additional argument --Metrics.CountersEnabled true to the Docker containers,Nethermind.Runner or Nethermind.Launcher e.g. ./Nethermind.Runner --Metrics.CountersEnabled true.

This flag can be configured separately from setting-up-local-metrics-infrastracture.mdas this two reporting modes are treated separately.

Metrics names

Metrics reported by a Nethermind node follow the module convention. Whenever there's a module X, its metrics will be reported under meter Nethermind.X For example, Evm module will be repoted under Nethermind.Evm and so on.


dotnet-counters is a tool provided by the .NET team to monitor and collect metrics for further analysis. The usage of it is different when used on the same machine or in the Dockerized environment. To learn more about the tool, please visit the official documentation page of metrics collection with dotnet-counters.

Same machine

When a node is running on the same machine, dotnet-counters , given that the .NET runtime is already installed, can be installed with the following

dotnet tool install -g dotnet-counters

This will install the tool globally and will allow the user to monitor and to collect metrics from any .NET process that is run on the same machine. For further information how to monitor and collect, please refer to the original documentation of this command.

Docker image and docker compose

When running in a Dockerized environment, the most common way is to create a separate docker image for .NET diagnostics. This can be done with the following Dockerfile

FROM AS base

RUN dotnet tool install -g dotnet-counters; \
dotnet tool install -g dotnet-trace; \
echo 'export PATH="$PATH:/root/.dotnet/tools"' >> /root/.bashrc

ENTRYPOINT ["/bin/bash"]

Once it's built, as dotdiag image, it will enable running dotnet-counters from within.

The second part is connecting the dockerized node with the dotdiag. Whether using docker copose or images run manually, it's important to remember that dotnet-counters communicate over a named pipe (Windows) or an IPC socked (Linux, macOS). To make it work, volume mapping should be provided so that the two images share the directory used for the communication. Similarly pid namespace needs to be shared between them.

Let's visit an extract of a docker-compose.yaml that would provide such configuration.

version: "3.9"


stop_grace_period: 30s
container_name: execution-client
restart: unless-stopped
- sedge
- ./dotnet-tmp:/tmp # /tmp is used to create the IPC socket, expose it as ./dotnet-tmp
# ports omitted as they are not changed
# make counters enabled so that reporting happens by setting the flag
- --Metrics.CountersEnabled=true
driver: "json-file"
max-size: "10m"
max-file: "10"

# the created dotdiag
container_name: dotdiag
image: dotdiag
stdin_open: true # docker run -i, so that it runs
tty: true # docker run -t, so that it runs
- ./dotnet-tmp:/tmp # map to the same directory, to make IPC socket connection
pid: "service:execution" # make pid namespaces are shared - processes are visible
- execution # make the dependency explicit