Chapter 18. Monitoring and Debugging

This chapter covers the key details you need to monitor and debug your Spark Applications. To do this, we will walk through the Spark UI with an example query designed to help you understand how to trace your own jobs through the execution life cycle. The example we’ll look at will also help you understand how to debug your jobs and where errors are likely to occur.

The Monitoring Landscape

At some point, you’ll need to monitor your Spark jobs to understand where issues are occuring in them. It’s worth reviewing the different things that we can actually monitor and outlining some of the options for doing so. Let’s review the components we can monitor (see Figure 18-1).

Spark Applications and Jobs

The first thing you’ll want to begin monitoring when either debugging or just understanding better how your application executes against the cluster is the Spark UI and the Spark logs. These report information about the applications currently running at the level of concepts in Spark, such as RDDs and query plans. We talk in detail about how to use these Spark monitoring tools throughout this chapter.


Spark runs the executors in individual Java Virtual Machines (JVMs). Therefore, the next level of detail would be to monitor the individual virtual machines (VMs) to better understand how your code is running. JVM utilities such as jstack for providing stack traces, jmap for creating heap-dumps, jstat for reporting time–series statistics, and ...

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