For a while now I have been self-hosting Grafana. I recently decided to give Cloud a try again. Overall I have ended up moving all of my metrics over to it. After factoring in all of the storage costs and everything it really came out better and I have been able to fit into the free plan.
The biggest benefit to me is the Grafana Agent. I do wish that this was more open-sourced so I could include it in a self-hosted setup. However, it is super helpful to send metrics and logs. This is really the biggest reason for it.
I do really like the free tier with a hard cap. i do wish that there was the ability to have a hard cap rather than having to go with on-demand. This is mostly just because I enjoy the predictability of what something is going to cost.
It has been great to not have to worry about keeping everything up. Grafana Cloud is reasonably stable and reliable and something that I don’t have to worry about. Since this is something that I depend on to monitor my clients this is super important.
It is the same product as what you can self-host, but it is hard to ignore the low cost and justify self-hosting all of the things in order to get everything. I have found the reliability to be worth it. This has allowed me to get the metrics I need without having to constantly worry about keeping it up.