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The script_exporter is a Prometheus exporter to execute scripts and collect metrics from the output or the exit status. The scripts to be executed are defined via a configuration file. In the configuration file several scripts can be specified. The script which should be executed is indicated by a parameter in the scrap configuration. The output of the script is captured and is provided for Prometheus. Even if the script does not produce any output, the exit status and the duration of the execution are provided.

Building and running

To run the script_exporter you can use the one of the binaries from the release page or the Docker image. You can also build the script_exporter by yourself by running the following commands:

git clone
cd script_exporter
make build

An example configuration can be found in the examples folder. To use this configuration run the following command:

./bin/script_exporter -config.file ./examples/config.yaml

Then visit http://localhost:9469 in the browser of your choice. There you have access to the following examples:

  • test: Invalid values which are returned by the script are omitted.
  • ping: Pings the specified address in the target parameter and returns if it was successful or not.
  • helloworld: Returns the specified argument in the script as label.
  • showtimeout: Reports whether or not the script is being run with a timeout from Prometheus, and what it is.
  • docker: Example using docker exec to return the number of files in a Docker container.
  • metrics: Shows internal metrics from the script exporter.

You can also deploy the script_exporter to Kubernetes. An example Deployment file can be found here: examples/kubernetes.yaml.

Usage and configuration

The script_exporter is configured via a configuration file and command-line flags.

Usage of ./bin/script_exporter:
  -config.file file
        Configuration file in YAML format. (default "config.yaml")
        Create bearer token for authentication.
  -timeout-offset seconds
        Offset to subtract from Prometheus-supplied timeout in seconds. (default 0.5)
        Show version information.
  -web.listen-address string
        Address to listen on for web interface and telemetry. (default ":9469")

The configuration file is written in YAML format, defined by the scheme described below.

  enabled: <boolean>
  crt: <string>
  key: <string>

  enabled: <boolean>
  username: <string>
  password: <string>

  enabled: <boolean>
  signingKey: <string>

  - name: <string>
    script: <string>
    # optional
      # in seconds, 0 or negative means none
      max_timeout: <float>
      enforced: <boolean>

The name of the script must be a valid Prometheus label value. The script string will be split on spaces to generate the program name and any fixed arguments, then any arguments specified from the params parameter will be appended. The program will be executed directly, without a shell being invoked, and it is recommended that it be specified by path instead of relying on $PATH.

Prometheus will normally provide an indication of its scrape timeout to the script exporter (through a special HTTP header). This information is made available to scripts through the environment variables $SCRIPT_TIMEOUT and $SCRIPT_DEADLINE. The first is the timeout in seconds (including a fractional part) and the second is the Unix timestamp when the deadline will expire (also including a fractional part). A simple script could implement this timeout by starting with timeout "$SCRIPT_TIMEOUT" cmd .... A more sophisticated program might want to use the deadline time to compute internal timeouts for various operation. If enforced is true, script_exporter attempts to enforce the timeout by killing the script's main process after the timeout expires. The default is to not enforce timeouts. If max_timeout is set for a script, it limits the maximum timeout value that requests can specify; a request that specifies a larger timeout will have the timeout adjusted down to the max_timeout value.

For testing purposes, the timeout can be specified directly as a URL parameter (timeout). If present, the URL parameter takes priority over the Prometheus HTTP header.

Prometheus configuration

The script_exporter needs to be passed the script name as a parameter (script). You can also pass a custom prefix (prefix) which is prepended to metrics names and the names of additional parameters which should be passed to the script (params and then additional URL parameters). If the output parameter is set to ignore then the script_exporter only return script_success{} and script_duration_seconds{}.

The params parameter is a comma-separated list of additional URL query parameters that will be used to construct the additional list of arguments, in order. The value of each URL query parameter is not parsed or split; it is passed directly to the script as a single argument.

Example config:

  - job_name: 'script_test'
    metrics_path: /probe
      script: [test]
      prefix: [script]
      - targets:
      - target_label: script
        replacement: test
  - job_name: 'script_ping'
    scrape_interval: 1m
    scrape_timeout: 30s
    metrics_path: /probe
      script: [ping]
      prefix: [script_ping]
      params: [target]
      output: [ignore]
      - targets:
      - source_labels: [__address__]
        target_label: __param_target
      - target_label: __address__
      - source_labels: [__param_target]
        target_label: target
      - source_labels: [__param_target]
        target_label: instance

  - job_name: 'script_exporter'
    metrics_path: /metrics
      - targets:

Breaking changes

Changes from version 1.3.0:

  • The command line flag -web.telemetry-path has been removed and its value is now always /probe, which is a change from the previous default of /metrics. The path /metrics now responds with Prometheus metrics for script_exporter itself.
  • The command line flag has been removed. Programs are now always run directly.


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