Alternatives to Datadog

Alternatives to Datadog

Table of Contents


Before we dive into the specifics of each alternative to Datadog, let's address the most critical point: scaling. Datadog is great for users who need to do a little bit of everything, but Datadog's biggest weakness is scaling.

Datadog can do logs, APM, time series and more, but scaling time-series metrics, alerts, and servers will cause your monthly bill to escalate. The graph below shows what you pay at Datadog vs. MetricFire, a leading competitor:

Screen Shot 2020-08-18 at 12.29.37 PM...


MetricFire is a time-series metrics monitoring platform, built on the open-source Graphite and Hosted Grafana. MetricFire specializes in scaling custom-series metrics, whereas Datadog doesn't. MetricFire balances the cost, functionality, and ease of use that today's DevOps engineers are looking for. To find out more, book a demo with the MetricFire team!

Key Takeaways

  1. Scaling is a critical issue for Datadog, as it becomes expensive to scale time-series metrics, alerts, and servers, causing the monthly bill to escalate.

  2. MetricFire is an enterprise-focused monitoring solution that specializes in scaling custom-series metrics, with Hosted Graphite running on Riak, offering increased support for tagged metrics, backups, and 24/7 support from engineers, all starting at $99 a month.

  3. New Relic provides infrastructure monitoring that records metrics and watches out for events affecting servers in near real-time. It provides pre-configured dashboards for 50 or more services, including Amazon Web Services, Microsoft Azure, and Google Cloud Platform and their integrations.

  4. Prometheus is an open-source monitoring system that provides an end-to-end monitoring solution for its own time-series database, with a focus on reliability, multi-dimensional data collection, and visualizations through Grafana dashboards.

  5. AWS CloudWatch is a suite of tools that includes a wide range of capabilities such as monitoring operational health and performance, log analysis, and event management, with the ability to automate actions to troubleshoot issues.



MetricFire is an enterprise-focused monitoring solution providing users with end-to-end infrastructure monitoring built open-source services including Graphite and Grafana. MetricFire has made technical improvements to these open-source systems, as well as made the open-source projects available as one hosted product. MetricFire is designed for teams of every size, from startups to large-scale enterprises.

With Hosted Graphite on MetricFire, we store your data for up to two years with 3 times redundancy. With Hosted Graphite running on Riak, essentially replacing Graphite’s antiquated file-based whisper storage, one can seamlessly scale with a cluster-based database. MetricFire additionally provides increased support for tagged metrics, backups and 24/7 support from engineers all starting at $99 a month. MetricFire helps get your business set up quickly - you can get your infrastructure monitoring solution up and running today by signing up for a free two-week MetricFire free trial.

Grafana as a service is a highly intuitive user interface that is included in all of MetricFire's standard pricing plans.





Datadog is a Software as a Service (SaaS) infrastructure & application monitoring tool. Datadog is used mostly in environments with a need to monitor a diverse range of tools and services over the cloud - from network to system to server monitoring. Datadog covers it all with its 200+ integrations for tools and services, making it easier to monitor every component of the tech stack. You should book a demo with MetricFire!

Datadog started in 2010, as a cloud infrastructure monitoring service, with dashboards, alerting, and visualizations of metrics. As cloud adoption increased, Datadog grew rapidly and expanded its product offering to cover service providers including Amazon Web Services (AWS), Microsoft Azure, Google Cloud Platform, Red Hat OpenShift, and OpenStack. Datadog quite recently launched its application monitoring service as well.  

Datadog, with its customizable dashboards, is free for up to 5 hosts (with 1-day data retention). After that, customers are billed $15/per host per month. There’s also a 14-day free trial available. You can check the updated pricing of the Datadog infrastructure on the website. The UI can be a bit murky at times, with a steep learning curve as it takes some time to get used to it. It is possible to integrate with apps such as PagerDuty or Slack to receive notifications.  As well, scaling time series metrics can be very expensive at Datadog.




New Relic

New Relic comes in as a strong alternative to Datadog by providing infrastructure monitoring that records metrics, and it watches out for events that affect the servers in near real-time. It also provides pre-configured dashboards for 50 or more services including Amazon Web Services, Microsoft Azure, and Google Cloud Platform and their integrations.

Monitoring capabilities for Kubernetes provide customers with the ability to troubleshoot, access, and analyze metrics across both application-related and infrastructure-related use cases. It also can create dynamic alerting, build custom integrations through New Relic’s integrations SDK, and configure management tools. New Relic is surely a strong contender to DataDog. However, New Relic’s integrations aren’t easy for everyone to set up and require some level of technical understanding. On the documentation and UI front, New Relic can do much better.

To compare pricing, at first New Relic provides a 30-day free trial. Then the essentials pack goes for $7.20 per user per month, and the pro pack goes for $14.40 per user per month. You can learn more about what’s included by checking the pricing page here.  





Prometheus is an open-source monitoring system that is built around providing an end-to-end monitoring solution for its own time-series database. It’s part of the Cloud Native Foundation and it's well supported by the community. It’s able to receive data and store it, in addition to supporting queries, graphs, and in-built alerting. It comes with a push gateway for exporting metrics from ephemeral or batch jobs and comes with a range of exporters. The Prometheus query language (PromQL) can be used to explore metrics and draw simple graphs with a lot of complexity.

Prometheus is built for both system monitoring as well as dynamic service-oriented architectures. Its design is focused on reliability, multi-dimensional data collection, and visualizations through Grafana dashboards. While being open-source and free, Prometheus can be quite technical, not to mention time-intensive to set up, configure and deploy in enterprise environments. Open-source Prometheus metrics have a default retention period of 15 days, which can be increased with the amount of storage you assign to it.

‍ ‍ 

AWS CloudWatch

AWS CloudWatch is a suite of tools that encompasses a wide range of cloud resources, including collecting logs and metrics, monitoring, visualization, alerting, and automated action in response to operational health changes. The resources can be on AWS, on-premises or a combination of both. CloudWatch is an excellent tool because it allows you to go beyond monitoring into observability.

In the case where you have an application running and it's using EC2, SNS, and AWS Lambda - CloudWatch can take care of both the application performance data and the infrastructure monitoring information that goes with it. Also, it simultaneously displays both on the same dashboard. CloudWatch collects the metrics, monitors instances, and alerts (Alarms and Events functions) and analyzes the overall system. CloudWatch charges on a pay-per-metric basis, where the cost of processing large amounts of metrics can grow substantially higher than competing monitoring solutions.

While it can’t be customized like other open-source alternatives, it’s the best tool for monitoring other services in Amazon Web Services. However, there is no Dashboard customization available. AWS also doesn’t automatically provide storage metrics. CloudWatch needs to improve integrations with a broader range of services to become a more widely applicable infrastructure monitoring tool.





Graphite is designed to be a time-series monitoring and graphing tool. It was a truly groundbreaking tool when it was released back in 2006. Graphite was way ahead of its time in the monitoring space, boasting the best performance whether installed on cheap hardware or Cloud infrastructure. More than a decade later, the community is loyal to its stability and performance.

Graphite stores numeric time-series data and renders graphs of this data on demand. According to its architecture, Graphite doesn’t collect any metrics on its own, rather it offers a simpler path for getting your measurements into a time-series DB. You can use several already available metric collectors like StatsD and Telegraf. You can see more about how to implement StatsD with Graphite in the StatsD configuration article.

Vanilla Graphite has been getting mixed reviews over the last few years because it has issues when running at scale and in clustered environments. The Carbon daemon is not always able to perform optimally due to its native code written in Python, and it doesn't have the best UI. However, these issues are sorted out by MetricFire's Hosted Graphite. MetricFire's Hosted Graphite improves upon open-source Graphite in other ways too, such as adding team accounts, a metrics collector agent, granular dashboard permissions, and further integrations.

If you want an open-source metrics and visualization tool that has features that are on par with many enterprise tools, Graphite is a suitable option for your monitoring requirements. MetricFire's Hosted Graphite service takes the good parts of open-source Graphite and supercharges them. Adding everything vanilla Graphite is missing: a built-in agent, team accounts, granular dashboard permissions, and integrations to other technologies and services like AWS, Heroku, Kubernetes and more.





Dynatrace’s cloud infrastructure entities serve its users with ML-powered solutions spanning native as well as hybrid environments, with continuous auto-discovery of host machines, containers, events, and logs. Dynatrace also permits its users to analyze key infrastructure health metrics in real-time. With AI-Ops, one can deduce precise and immediate answers about anomalies and data points of possible concern. Dynatrace enterprise can be set up on bare metal, VMware, OpenStack, AWS, Azure, or as a hybrid solution.

Dynatrace went public in August 2019. From then APM, AIOps, cloud infrastructure monitoring, and more. Dynatrace has transaction tracing, synthetic monitoring, real user monitoring, and network monitoring. The software manages the availability and performance of software applications as well as the impact on overall user experience. The free version allows up to 5 servers to be monitored for an unlimited time, however, it excludes data retention. The number of visits on the free version is capped at 100k.

While there is no mention of pricing on the Dynatrace website, the free version is good for small and immediate deployment infrastructures. The interface seemed a bit too cluttered, especially for users with no experience with cloud monitoring tools. Otherwise all and all a solid alternative to Datadog.






There are many extremely competitive tools available in the market for infrastructure monitoring. Hopefully, this post provides you with the right insight, knowledge, and advice before choosing the right tool for you.

If you're ready to start monitoring now, try out MetricFire's free trial. Also, book a demo and talk to us directly about your monitoring needs.

You might also like other posts...
comparisons Nov 30, 2023 · 12 min read

Grafana vs. Power BI

Can Grafana or Power BI give you a solution that gives you meaningful insight... Continue Reading

comparisons Oct 12, 2023 · 16 min read

Prometheus vs. ELK

What are the differences and similarities between Prometheus vs. ELK? Which one should you... Continue Reading

comparisons Oct 12, 2023 · 19 min read

Top 8 Open Source Dashboards

Take a look at the top 8 open source dashboards for data visualization available... Continue Reading

header image

We strive for
99.999% uptime

Because our system is your system.

14-day trial 14-day trial
No Credit Card Required No Credit Card Required