OpenTelemetry Terms and Concepts

This page describes essential terms and concepts for OpenTelemetry and Datadog. For additional definitions and descriptions, see the OpenTelemetry Glossary.

TelemetryThe collection of metrics, logs, and traces that provide observations about the behaviors and performance of applications and infrastructure.
OpenTelemetry CollectorA vendor-agnostic implementation for collecting and exporting telemetry data emitted by many processes. It can be configured to receive, process, and export telemetry to one or multiple destinations including storage backends and analysis tools.
Datadog ExporterA component that lets you forward trace, metric, and logs data from OpenTelemetry SDKs to Datadog.
OTLP ReceiverA component within the OpenTelemetry Collector responsible for accepting telemetry data in the OpenTelemetry Protocol (OTLP) format. OTLP is the native protocol for OpenTelemetry, designed for transferring telemetry data between the SDKs and the Collector.
Context PropagationThe mechanism used in distributed tracing to maintain trace context across different services.
Semantic ConventionsOpenTelemetry makes use of a number of semantic conventions that specify names for different types of data.

Further reading