DeveloperWeek 2021 DeveloperWeek 2021
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PRO WORKSHOP (CloudWorld): The What's and Why's of Distributed Tracing

- PST
CloudWorld Stage E
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Dave McAllister
Splunk, Technical Evangelist

At Splunk, Dave works with DevOps and developers to promote the advantages of modern microservices architectures and orchestration to solve large-scale distributed systems challenges, especially for today's fast-moving cycles.

Dave has been a champion for open systems and open source from the early days of Linux to today's world of clouds and containers. He speaks on topics such as the real-world issues associated with emerging software architectures and practices. Currently, his driving interests is RED monitoring, observability and service mesh.

Dave was named as one of the top ten pioneers in open source by Computer Business Review, having cut his teeth on Linux and compilers before the phrase "open source" was coined.


Tracing can be very powerful. It gives the ability to connect the customer experience to the backend services several hops away. This comes down to what information is in your traces. There isn't one standard set of tags to add for EVERY application. It comes down to how traces are used and what matters to your organization. During this session we will discuss the need for tracing, dive into the why (and what) you would want to trace via distributed tracing, and delve into the OpenTelemetry specs and architecture on how we can tailor (or tag) our traces. You’ll leave with an understanding of the semantic context in OpenTelemetry and how it might help you understand your applications.