Streaming Data platform application topology / application lineage:

Topology overview

Basic Concepts

The Topology is a rich UI that enables the visualization of detailed Data Flow Graphs, ETL Pipelines Stream Processing and Analytics workflows and their relation to native Lenses/Kafka resources, such as Kafka Topics, SQL Processors, and Kafka Connectors.

The Graph in Lenses Topology is automatically generated based on the available applications running against your cluster.

External Applications

On top of that, we can visualize External Applications in the Topology, whether that is your Java Kafka Stream applications, Apache Flink or Spark Jobs, or Microservices written in any programming language.


Lenses Topology has built-in support for overlaying metrics for each entity. You can now monitor “Input” and “Output” Rates for Records and Data, as well as the “Status” of the Application in question. You can configure the frequency of the metrics received via the configuration


To be able to View the Lenses Topology, you will need the "ViewTopology" Permission. To instrument an Application, you will need the "ManageTopology" Permission.

If you are unfamiliar with our RBAC Security, you can find more on Application Permissions here . You can use either the Lenses HTTP API or the JVM Topology Client Library to instrument your custom applications.

HTTP Client

Register Custom Applications, with the HTTP Client, and metadata for their usages, following the instructions in this example . The HTTP Topology API provides a full HTTP Lifecycle. You can find more info here .

JVM Client

If you are developing a JVM based Application, you can take advantage of or JVM Topology Client Library. Learn how to Register an Application by following this example . You can also include Metrics with the JVM Topology Client, following the instructions here .


On top of the API, the CLI provides a stable and consistent way to promote GitOps. Meaning, we can import/export your "Topics", "SQL Processors", and "Connectors" and use them across different Lenses Deployments.

You can find more about Lenses GitOps capabilities, following the instructions here


Lenses Topology is comprised of several different Nodes Types. From Topics, SQL Processors, and Connectors, to Custom Application. Each Node on the UI is clickable. That way, we can take a close view and look for more information regarding each Node.

The Topology UI allows you to fit Nodes to your Screen quickly and the option to hide Metrics to improve readability in very dynamic topologies.

Kafka Topics

Kafka Topics, are “stores” on information. In the Topology, they are depicted as folders, and by clicking them we can see more information, about their usages as described in the image below:

  • Information about the Topic (Replication, Partitions, Configs, Schema Format).
  • Information about (Producers, Consumers) and Quick Links to them.
  • Infomration about (Metrics) such as Rate In/Out and Data Size.

Topology Kafka TopicNode

The Topology UI, will also inform you in case, either the Source or Sink Topics, aren't present in your Cluster.

Topology No KafkaTopic

SQL Processors

Lenses SQL Processors, allow you to use Streaming SQL to process real-time data. In the Topology, they are depected with a Thunder icon. By clicking them, we can see information such as:

  • Information about the Processor (Status, Runners).
  • Infomration about (Metrics) such as Rate In/Out and Data Size.
  • Information about the (Inner Topology of the Processor, SQL Statement).

Topology SQL ProcessorNode

Kafka Connectors

Connectors, are used to either import or export Data to and from your Kafka Cluster. They are represented in Lenses Topology as Puzzle icon. By clicking them, we can see information such as:

  • Information about the Connector (Status, Data Type, Number of Runners).
  • Infomration about the Conector Taks (Task Status, WorkerId).
  • Infomration about the Topics used (Name, Quick Link).

Topology Kafka ConnectorNode

In case you have enabled JMX with your Brokers, Registrey and ZK, you will be able to see Metrics for your Connectors as well.

Topology Kafka ConnectorNodeJMX

Custom Applications

Applications deployed outside of Lenses can be registered Lenses’ Topology. They are presented with a Lenses App icon. By clicking them, we can see information such as:

  • Information about the Application Status (Status, Runners).
  • Information about the Application (Owner, Deployment, Tags).

Topology Custom App Node