This guide introduces you to Imply by taking you through the steps to install Imply, load sample data, and then query and create visualizations of your dataset.
There are several ways to get started with Imply. The easiest way is to sign up for an Imply Cloud (AWS) Free Trial. Imply Cloud is a managed service that will deploy and manage scalable Imply clusters directly in your AWS account for you.
Alternatively, you can install Imply as an evaluation instance on a single machine using the quickstart configuration. This type of Imply is not managed by the Imply Manager.
For a quickstart installation of a managed Imply instance, see the Kubernetes quickstart.
Set up Imply
To follow the steps for using one of these methods, continue with the relevant section here:
Start Imply Cloud
To follow these steps, you need an Imply Cloud account. Sign up for a free account if you do not have one.
When you log into Imply Cloud, you will start at the Clusters view:
Click on the New cluster button in the top right hand corner.
Choose a name for your cluster, and use the default values for the remainder of the settings.
Click Create cluster to launch a cluster in your AWS VPC. Note that clusters can take between 20–30 minutes to launch.
The cluster you'll create in this quickstart is not highly available. For high availability, consider as a starting point the recommended topology for the Imply Cloud trial: three m5.large instances for master servers, two c5.large instances for query servers, and three i3.xlarge instances for data servers.
Congratulations, now it's time to load data!
Start Unmanaged Imply
This section describes how to install and start Imply on a single machine using the quickstart configuration.
The configuration used in this quickstart is intended to minimize resource usage and is not meant for load testing large production data sets. For production-ready installations, see Production-ready installation instructions.
To run a single-machine Imply instance with the quickstart configuration, you will need:
- Java 8 (8u92 or higher)
- Linux, Mac OS X, or other Unix-like OS (Windows is not supported)
- At least 4GB of RAM
Download Imply 2021.09 from imply.io/get-started and unpack the release archive.
tar -xzf imply-2021.09.tar.gz cd imply-2021.09
In this package, you'll find:
bin/*- run scripts for included software.
conf/*- template configurations for a clustered setup.
conf-quickstart/*- configurations for this quickstart.
dist/*- all included software.
quickstart/*- files useful for this quickstart.
Apply a license
A new, unlicensed Imply installation comes with a free 30-day trial period. If you already have a license from Imply, you can apply it by adding the path to the license file to
conf-quickstart/pivot/config.yaml as the
licenseFile property, as follows:
Next, start the Imply services which include:
You can use the included supervise script to start everything with a single command:
bin/supervise -c conf/supervise/quickstart.conf
Imply logs a message for each service that starts up. You can view detailed logs
for any service by looking in the
var/sv/ directory using another terminal.
If you set up a license, you can see whether or not it was found in
Later on, if you want to stop the services, CTRL-C the supervise program in your terminal. If you
want a clean start after stopping the services, remove the
Now that you've gotten Imply running, it's time to load data.
Load a data file
The sample data in this tutorial represents Wikipedia edits from June 27, 2016. To complete this tutorial, your cluster must be able to reach static.imply.io, where the data is hosted.
1. Open Pivot. To access Pivot:
- In Imply Cloud: Click the Open button from the cluster list or cluster overview page.
- In a self-hosted Imply Manager: Once you've got Imply up and running, go to http://localhost:9095. You should see a page similar to the following.
If you get a connection refused error, your Imply cluster may not yet be online. Try waiting a few seconds and refreshing the page.
2. Open the Druid Console. Click Load data to open the data loader in the Druid console.
From this data loader, you can ingest data from a number of static and streaming sources:
3. Start the data loader. Select the HTTP(s) option to load data from an online location, and Connect data to start the flow.
4. Sample the data. Enter
https://static.imply.io/data/wikipedia.json.gz in the
URIs input and Apply, to preview the data.
When you see the following screen you are ready to move to the next step. Click Next: Parse data.
5. Configure the parser. The data loader automatically detects the parser type for the data and presents a preview of the
parsed output. In this case, it suggests the
json parser based upon the current dataset. Click Next: Parse time to continue.
6. Configure the time column parsing. Druid uses a timestamp column to partition your data. This page allows you to
identify which column should be used as the primary time column and how to format the timestamp. In this case, the
loader automatically detects the
timestamp column and chooses the
Click Next: Transform to continue.
7. Skip the transform, filter, and configure schema steps. Accept the defaults for the next three steps, until you reach the partition settings. In short, a transform lets you modify columns at ingestion time and create new derived columns. Filters allow you to exclude unwanted columns from the ingested data. Click Next: Filter, Next: Configure schema, and then Next: Partition.
8. Configure the partition. Imply always uses time for the primary partition. In the partition settings, set the granularity of the time intervals. Choose
DAY for the Segment granularity and choose
dynamic for Partitioning type. Dynamic partitioning configures secondary partitioning based on the number of rows in a segment. (See partitionsSpec for details.) Click Next: Tune.
9. Skip the tune and publish steps. The next sections of the data loader allow you to modify tuning and publishing parameters for the ingestion job. The defaults here are appropriate, so click Next: Publish, and then Next: Edit spec. For subsequent jobs, note that the Publish section is where you specify the name of the datasource which is used when managing or querying your data.
10. Examine the final spec. The last page of the data loader provides an overview of the ingestion spec that will be submitted. Here, advanced users can make manual adjustments to the spec to configure functionality not available through the data loader. When you are ready, click Submit to begin the ingestion task.
11. Wait for the data to finish loading. The console opens the task screen where you can see your task begin to run. Wait for the task status to change to SUCCESS. Note that you may need to scroll to the right to see the Status column. After the task finishes successfully, move on to the next section to learn how to define a data cube and visualize your data.
Create a data cube
Go back to Pivot and make sure that your newly ingested datasource appears in the list (it might take a few seconds for it to show up).
Switch to the Visualize section of Pivot by clicking on the Visuals button on the top bar. From here, you can create data cubes to model your data, explore these cubes, and organize views into dashboards. To start, click Create new data cube.
In the dialog that comes up, make sure that
wikipedia is the selected Source and that Auto-fill dimensions and measures is selected.
Continue by clicking Next: Create data cube.
From here you can configure the various aspects of your data cube, including defining and customizing the cube's dimensions and measures. The data cube creation flow can intelligently inspect the columns in your data source and determine possible dimensions and measures automatically. We enabled this when we selected Auto-fill dimensions and measures on the previous screen and you can see that the cube's settings have been largely pre-populated. In our case, the suggestions are appropriate so we can continue by clicking on the Save button in the top-right corner.
Pivot's data cubes are highly configurable and give you the flexibility to represent your dataset, as well as derived and custom columns, in many different ways. The documentation on dimensions and measures is a good starting point for learning how to configure a data cube.
Visualize a data cube
After clicking Save, the data cube view for this new data cube is automatically loaded. In the future, this view can also be loaded by clicking on the name of the data cube (in this example, 'Wikipedia') from the Visuals screen.
Here, you can explore a dataset by filtering and splitting it across any dimension. For each filtered split of your data, you will see the aggregate value of your selected measures. For example, on the wikipedia dataset, you can see the most frequently edited pages by splitting on Page. Drag Page to the Show bar, and keep the default sort, by Number of Events. You should see a screen like the following:
The data cube view suggests different visualizations based on how you split your data. If you split on a string column, your data is initially presented as a table. If you split on time, the data cube view recommends a time series plot, and if you split on a numeric column you will get a bar chart. Try replacing the Page dimension with Time in the Show bar. Your visualization switches to a time series chart, like the following:
You can also change the visualization manually by choosing your preferred visualization from the dropdown. If the shown dimensions are not appropriate for a particular visualization, the data cube view will recommend alternative dimensions.
For more information on visualizing data, refer to the Data cubes section.
Imply includes an easy-to-use interface for issuing Druid SQL queries. To access the SQL editor, go to the SQL section. If you are in the visualization view, you can navigate to this screen by selecting SQL from the hamburger menu in the top-left corner of the page. Once there, try running the following query, which will return the most edited Wikipedia pages:
SELECT page, COUNT(*) AS Edits FROM wikipedia WHERE "__time" BETWEEN TIMESTAMP '2016-06-27 00:00:00' AND TIMESTAMP '2016-06-28 00:00:00' GROUP BY page ORDER BY Edits DESC LIMIT 5
You should see results like the following:
For more details on making SQL queries with Druid, see the Druid SQL documentation.
Congratulations! You have now deployed a simple Imply cluster, loaded a sample dataset into Imply, defined a data cube, explored some simple visualizations, and executed queries using Druid SQL.
Next, you can:
- Configure a data cube to customize dimensions and measures for your data cube.
- Create a dashboard with your favorite views and share it.
- Read more about supported query methods, including visualization or SQL.
Production-ready installation instructions
As previously mentioned, the configuration described in this quickstart is intended for investigatory or learning scenarios. To learn more about production-ready installations, refer to the following guides: