Using Widgets and Templates in DataDog - Tutorial

Welcome to this tutorial on using widgets and templates in DataDog. DataDog is a powerful monitoring and analytics platform that provides various features to help you gain insights into your applications and infrastructure. Widgets and templates are essential tools in DataDog that allow you to visualize and customize your monitoring dashboards. In this tutorial, we will walk through the steps of using widgets and templates effectively.


Before we begin, make sure you have the following:

  • An active DataDog account
  • Access to DataDog dashboards

Step 1: Creating a Widget

To create a widget in DataDog, follow these steps:

  1. Login to your DataDog account and navigate to the dashboard where you want to add the widget.
  2. Click on the "Add Widget" button or the "+" icon on the dashboard.
  3. Choose the type of widget you want to create from the available options (e.g., time series graph, top list, heatmap, etc.).
  4. Configure the widget settings such as data source, metric, time range, and visualization options.
  5. Customize the widget appearance by changing the size, color, and layout.
  6. Save the widget to add it to the dashboard.

Here's an example of a command to create a time series graph widget using the DataDog API:

POST /api/v1/dashboard HTTP/1.1
Content-Type: application/json
{"widgets": [{"type": "timeseries", "requests": [{"q": "avg:system.cpu.idle{*}"}]}]}

Step 2: Using Templates

Templates in DataDog allow you to create reusable widget configurations across multiple dashboards. Here's how to use templates:

  1. Create a new template by going to the "Templates" section in DataDog.
  2. Define the widget configuration, including data source, metric, visualization, and any other relevant settings.
  3. Save the template.
  4. Apply the template to one or more dashboards by selecting the template from the "Add Widget" menu and choosing the appropriate settings.

With templates, you can easily maintain consistency across multiple dashboards and update widget configurations in a centralized manner.

Common Mistakes to Avoid

  • Not selecting the correct data source or metric when creating a widget.
  • Overloading a dashboard with too many widgets, causing clutter and decreased readability.
  • Forgetting to save templates after creating them, resulting in lost configurations.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Q1: Can I modify the appearance of a widget after it's been created?

A1: Yes, you can edit the properties of a widget, such as its size, color, and layout, even after it has been created.

Q2: Can I share my custom templates with other users in DataDog?

A2: Yes, you can share templates by exporting them as JSON files and providing them to other DataDog users who can import them into their accounts.

Q3: Can I use widgets and templates with custom metrics?

A3: Absolutely! DataDog supports custom metrics, and you can create widgets and templates using these metrics for monitoring and visualization.

Q4: How can I delete a widget from a dashboard?

A4: To remove a widget, simply click on the "Edit" or "Delete" option available on the widget and confirm your action.

Q5: Can I clone a widget from one dashboard to another?

A5: Yes, you can clone widgets by selecting the "Clone" option and specifying the target dashboard where you want to replicate the widget.


In this tutorial, you learned how to effectively use widgets and templates in DataDog to create and customize monitoring dashboards. We covered the steps to create a widget, including choosing the type, configuring settings, and saving it to the dashboard. Additionally, we explored the usage of templates to maintain consistent widget configurations across multiple dashboards. By avoiding common mistakes and leveraging the power of DataDog's widgets and templates, you can gain valuable insights into your applications and infrastructure.