Apr 13, 2023
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The Akita Docker Extension, Now in Beta

Lauren Rother
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Akita is the fastest time-to-value monitoring solution, providing the metrics that teams need to quickly identify and fix customer-impacting issues. With the Akita Docker Desktop extension, you can use Docker Desktop to see where the problems with your API are in a matter of minutes.

After crossing 1800 installs, the Akita Docker Desktop extension is now officially in beta! Read on to learn more about our journey from alpha to beta and the problems we’ve solved along the way.

Akita’s Docker extension in alpha

In December of last year, we launched the alpha version of our Akita Docker Desktop extension. Our goal was to get you to see your API endpoints, which ones might be slow, and which ones are throwing errors—in just minutes. But we didn’t entirely meet that goal.

Lots of people tried it out, but we noticed a significant number of them getting stuck along the way. Many of these users couldn’t get Akita to see any traffic, let alone get to an API model.

So we started watching our logs to see what patterns emerged when users were onboarding, and we found a few common problems.

  • Creating a project was confusing. We heard from quite a few people that they would like to try Akita, but weren’t clear on how to use or create a project, as it required going out into the app and often getting conflicting information from our onboarding flow there.
  • Onboarding friction. We had a step where you needed to explicitly enable container visibility in the extension, and if you missed this step it meant the extension wouldn’t start up or communicate with Akita properly. That’s a pretty big consequence for missing a step in onboarding.
  • Akita’s Docker extension not seeing traffic. We also noticed a handful of users who didn’t seem to have their apps running in Docker Desktop, which meant there was nothing for Akita to see. Akita works by observing your API in action out in the world, but it can be hard to know exactly which container your app is running in. And sometimes, you might do development from Docker Desktop, but push to staging and production in systems that your Docker Desktop can’t see at all!

What’s changed

It’s now easier than ever to get started with Docker Desktop. We’ve made a lot of small changes that add up to a much more straightforward, streamlined onboarding. These changes include:

  • An Akita demo. An end-to-end demo embedded directly in the Docker Desktop extension, so you can see traffic in Akita and get a sense of what Akita does before hooking us up to your application (read more about the demo below).
  • Reduced onboarding friction. We now automatically set the correct visibility for containers, no need to dive into additional settings in order to get started. We also added a customized onboarding experience within Akita just for Docker Desktop users.
  • Improving the extension’s ability to see traffic. Before, it was hard to tell if Akita was successfully running or not; now there are clear indications within the extension of when a model is building, when it is completed, and if something went wrong. We’ve also streamlined the settings page, so it’s easier than ever to tell Akita to look at a specific container or run on a specific port. Before, this was an easy step to miss and hard to find if you needed to go back to edit.

Akita Demo

Sometimes, you just want to see what a tool does before hooking up to your application. We get it! So we’ve created a demo that allows you to see how Akita handles the good, the bad, and the ugly of APIs. 

All you have to do to try the demo is click the “Enable Demo Mode” button within the Akita extension in Docker Desktop:

Enabling the Akita Docker extension.

You will see a message that “Akita is starting”

Starting Akita.

And when it’s ready, you’ll see a messaging that your project is receiving traffic.


Click the View API Model button and check out our demo API! Here’s a sneak peek:

Demo API model.

Make sure to check the Metrics and Errors page to see what endpoints are misbehaving.

Try Akita on Docker Desktop

Now that we’re officially in beta, we hope you try out the Akita Docker Desktop extension and let us know what you think!

Once you’ve seen what we can do, run us where you run your app.

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