Telemetry generator

Prerequisites & setup

Opentelemetry collector builder

Install the opentelemetry-collector-builder; this is deprecated but its replacement does not work with the old version of the collector we’re still pinned to.

  1. $ cd /tmp (or wherever you like to keep code)
  2. $ git clone
  3. $ cd opentelemetry-collector-builder
  4. $ git checkout v0.35.0
  5. $ go get -u
  6. $ go install .

Get the code

  1. Clone the telemetry generator repo to a directory of your choosing:
    1. $ cd ~/Code (or wherever)
    2. $ git clone
    3. $ cd telemetry-generator
  2. Check out the development branch – until we break the receiver out into its own repo, this is our effective “main” branch: $ git checkout generatorv2
  3. $ cd collector (this will be our working directory for everything that follows)
  4. Copy hipster_shop.yaml to dev.yaml for local development. Not strictly necessary but will potentially save heartache and hassle 😅 This file is in .gitignore, so it won’t be included in your commits. If you want to share config changes, add them to a new example config file. $ cp generatorreceiver/topos/hipster_shop.yaml generatorreceiver/topos/dev.yaml

Environment variables

Access token

To send telemetery data to Lightstep, you’ll need an access token associated with the lightstep project you want to use. Go to ⚙ -> Access Tokens to copy an existing one or create a new one. Then:

$ export LS_ACCESS_TOKEN="<your token>"

Collector endpoint

The env var OTEL_EXPORTER_OTLP_TRACES_ENDPOINT determines the endpoint for traces and metrics. To send data to Lightstep, use:

$ export

Topo file (generatorreceiver config)

The env var TOPO_FILE determines which config file the generatorreceiver uses.

If you use the opentelemetry-collector-builder you’ll want to point to generatorreceiver/topos/<filename.yaml>:

$ export TOPO_FILE=generatorreceiver/topos/dev.yaml

For Docker builds, these files are copied to /etc/otel/, so set TOPO_FILE like this:

$ export TOPO_FILE=/etc/otel/dev.yaml

Build and run the collector

There are two options here, but if possible we recommend using the opentelemetry-collector-builder, which is much faster and lets you test config changes without rebuilding. With the Docker build method, you need to rebuild the image for all changes, code or config, and the build process takes much longer.

Build and run with the opentelemetry-collector-builder (recommended)

(You must first install the opentelemetry-collector-builder; see Prerequisites above.)

$ opentelemetry-collector-builder --config config/builder-config.yml
$ build/telemetry-generator --config config/collector-config.yml

When using the builder, you only need to re-run the first command for code changes; for config changes just re-run the second command. To run with a different topo file, change the TOPO_FILE environment variable.

If you run into errors while building, please open an issue.

Build and run with Docker (alternative)

$ docker build -t lightstep/telemetry-generator:latest .
$ docker run --rm -e LS_ACCESS_TOKEN -e OTEL_EXPORTER_OTLP_TRACES_ENDPOINT -e TOPO_FILE lightstep/telemetry-generator:latest

When building with Docker, you need to re-run both steps for any code or config changes. If you run into errors while building, please open an issue.


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