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How To Guides

Retrieving Debug Information

Each Dgraph data node exposes profile over /debug/pprof endpoint and metrics over /debug/vars endpoint. Each Dgraph data node has it’s own profiling and metrics information. Below is a list of debugging information exposed by Dgraph and the corresponding commands to retrieve them.

If you are collecting these metrics from outside the dgraph instance you need to pass --expose_trace=true flag, otherwise there metrics can be collected by connecting to the instance over localhost.

  • Metrics exposed by Dgraph

    curl http://<IP>:<HTTP_PORT>/debug/vars
  • Heap Profile

    go tool pprof http://<IP>:<HTTP_PORT>/debug/pprof/heap
    #Fetching profile from ...
    #Saved Profile in ...

    The output of the command would show the location where the profile is stored.

  • CPU Profile

    go tool pprof http://<IP>:<HTTP_PORT>/debug/pprof/profile
  • Block Profile Dgraph by default doesn’t collect the block profile. Dgraph must be started with --block=<N> with N > 1.

    go tool pprof http://<IP>:<HTTP_PORT>/debug/pprof/block

Giving Nodes a Type

It’s often useful to give the nodes in a graph types (also commonly referred to as labels or kinds).

This allows you to do lots of useful things. For example:

  • Search for all nodes of a certain type in the root function.

  • Filter nodes to only be of a certain kind.

  • Enable easier exploration and understanding of a dataset. Graphs are easier to grok when there’s an explicit type for each node, since there’s a clearer expectation about what predicates it may or may not have.

  • Allow users coming from traditional SQL-like RDBMSs will feel more at home; traditional tables naturally map to node types.

The best solution for adding node kinds is to associate each type of node with a particular predicate. E.g. type foo is associated with a predicate foo, and type bar is associated with a predicate bar. The schema doesn’t matter too much. I can be left as the default schema, and the value given to it can just be "".

The has function can be used for both searching at the query root and filtering inside the query.

To search for all foo nodes, follow a predicate, then filter for only bar nodes:

  q(func: has(foo)) {
    pred @filter(bar) {

Another approach is to have a type predicate with schema type string, indexed with the exact tokenizer. eq(type, "foo") and @filter(eq(type, "foo")) can be used to search and filter. This second approach has some serious drawbacks (especially since the introduction of transactions in v0.9). It’s recommended instead to use the first approach.

The first approach has better scalability properties. Because it uses many predicates rather than just one, it allows better predicate balancing on multi-node clusters. The second approach will also result in an increased transaction abortion rate, since every typed node creation would result in writing to the type index.

A Simple Login System


This example is based on part of the transactions in v0.9 blogpost. Error checking has been omitted for brevity.

Schema is assumed to be:

email: string @index(exact) . # @index(hash) would also work
pass: password .
// Create a new transaction. The deferred call to Discard
// ensures that server-side resources are cleaned up.
txn := client.NewTxn()
defer txn.Discard(ctx)

// Create and execute a query to looks up an email and checks if the password
q := fmt.Sprintf(`
        login_attempt(func: eq(email, %q)) {
            checkpwd(pass, %q)
`, email, pass)
resp, err := txn.Query(ctx, q)

// Unmarshal the response into a struct. It will be empty if the email couldn't
// be found. Otherwise it will contain a bool to indicate if the password matched.
var login struct {
    Account []struct {
        Pass []struct {
            CheckPwd bool `json:"checkpwd"`
        } `json:"pass"`
    } `json:"login_attempt"`
err = json.Unmarshal(resp.GetJson(), &login); err != nil {

// Now perform the upsert logic.
if len(login.Account) == 0 {
    fmt.Println("Account doesn't exist! Creating new account.")
    mu := &protos.Mutation{
        SetJson: []byte(fmt.Sprintf(`{ "email": %q, "pass": %q }`, email, pass)),
    _, err = txn.Mutate(ctx, mu)
    // Commit the mutation, making it visible outside of the transaction.
    err = txn.Commit(ctx)
} else if login.Account[0].Pass[0].CheckPwd {
    fmt.Println("Login successful!")
} else {
    fmt.Println("Wrong email or password.")