Scaling and Configuring the Instana Agent

Below are some answers to agent performance related queries. Please note that this information applies to the trace API on the agent and not for the public rest API (

Rest API Calls / sec. (max):


Max payload per Post/Request (SPAN):

A span must not exceed 4KB

Number of SPAN's in one array:

Maximum 1000

Amount of calls from Agent to Backend, is there a limit / sec:

Data transmission between Instana agent and Instana backend depends on a lot of factors. It is done using a persistent HTTP2 connection and highly optimized.

What is the optimal package size (splited size) to send 50000 SPAN with a size about 40MByte over the Agent to Backend:

Recommended strategy is to buffer spans for up to one second or until 500 spans were collected, then transmit the spans to the agent. An implementation of this transmission strategy can be seen here:

What are the Agent requirements for best performance (cpu, ram, etc.):

This depends on the host that should be monitored, e.g. the number of Docker containers per host etc.

How to configure the Agent environment:

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