Azure Monitor Agents: their different functions

Sameer MhaisekarSquaredUp, Technical Evangelist

In the Azure Monitor Learning Path, we talked about metrics and collecting data in a Log Analytics workspace to be operated on with KQL. As a part of it, we also talked about Monitoring Solutions and how they help you collect data into the workspace that is more focused for specific purposes. In that series, our main focus was on the Log Analytics Agent and I briefly talked about Diagnostics extension. 

In this article, we'll talk in more detail about the different Azure Monitor agents and how they work.

If the first word that pops in your mind when you think of Azure Monitor agents is “Log Analytics Agent (or MMA)”, you’re not alone. You’re also not wrong. The LA agent is the one you’d need and use the most, but there are also some other agents that Azure Monitor uses to collect and display monitoring data. 

The capabilities of some of these agents largely overlap (especially the first two), but they are unique in some features that they provide. Guest OS level telemetry is collected by more than one agent, for example. So don’t get confused by that! Hopefully this article will make it easier for you to choose which one to use.