Introduction to NRQL

The New Relic Query Language (NRQL), similar to SQL, is a query language for making calls against the Insights event database. NRQL enables you to query data collected from your application and transform that data into dynamic charts. From there, you can interpret your data to better understand how your application is used in a variety of ways.

  • For a library of videos about basic concepts, examples, and advanced procedures to use New Relic Insights, visit learn.newrelic.com.
  • For examples of using NRQL to explore the data collected by New Relic APM and other products, see NRQL Query Examples.

Use the query tool

crop-nrql-command-line
Insights > (run a query): After running an Insights query, make any necessary adjustments to get the result you want, or add it to a dashboard by using the Add to this dashboard and Add to buttons.

The command line query tool appears at the top of your dashboards and the Query history page. Use it to build out commands with SQL-style syntax. As you type, the auto-completion feature suggests attributes, and it flags syntax errors with a red underline. For more information about NRQL syntax, see NRQL reference.

If your company uses multiple New Relic accounts across your teams, you can select the source account from the account switcher in the query tool to query the source account's data.

The parser can identify syntax errors, but logic errors will normally not be apparent until you try to execute the statement. If the statement cannot be run, an error report will indicate the location of the first identified error. New Relic Insights also ignores NULL results entirely, unless your query explicitly requests NULL results.

NRQL syntax

    SELECT function(attribute) [AS 'label'][, ...] 
     FROM event
     [WHERE attribute [comparison] [AND|OR ...]][AS 'label'][, ...]
     [FACET attribute | function(attribute)]
     [LIMIT number]
     [SINCE time]
     [UNTIL time]
     [WITH TIMEZONE timezone]
     [COMPARE WITH time]
     [TIMESERIES time]

New Relic refers to NRQL statements as event queries. The syntax of the NRQL event query is similar to standard SQL queries. Basic syntax rules include:

  • The SELECT statement and FROM clause are required (all other clauses are optional).

  • Attribute names are case sensitive. NRQL clauses and functions are not case sensitive.

  • NRQL uses single quotes '' to designate strings.

  • You must use backticks `` to quote a custom attribute name with a space in it (for example: `Logged-in user`).

  • Insights does not support "coercion." This means that a float stored as a string is treated as a string and cannot be operated on by functions expecting float values.

  • Basic math functions are supported in the SELECT statement.

  • Insights does not have the equivalent of the SQL JOIN function, but you can simulate a JOIN with custom attributes.

Basic NRQL query
SELECT uniqueCount(user) 
 FROM  PageView 
 WHERE userAgentOS = 'Mac' 
 FACET countryCode
 SINCE 1 day ago 
 LIMIT 20 
NRQL query on attribute with space in name
SELECT count(*) 
 FROM Transaction 
 FACET `Logged-in user`
Query multiple events or columns

Use a comma (,) to merge data from two event types or to return multiple columns from a dataset. To return multiple event types, join the types with a comma:

SELECT ...
  FROM event, event
  ...

This query returns a count of all APM transactions and Browser events over the last three days:

SELECT count(*) FROM Transaction, PageView SINCE 3 days ago

To return multiple columns from a dataset, separate the aggregator arguments with a comma:

SELECT function(attribute), function(attribute) ...
  FROM ...

This query returns the minimum, average, and maximum duration for Browser events over the last week:

SELECT min(duration), max(duration), average(duration)
  FROM PageView SINCE 1 week ago

NRQL in Insights API queries

NRQL is also used with the Insights API to make remote queries of your data. When used in an API request, a NRQL query must be formatted a certain way. Read Generate an API query for more information.

For more help

For assistance with New Relic Insights, join us in the New Relic Online Technical Community. Ask and answer questions, and learn more about New Relic Insights from fellow Insights users.

If you need additional help, get support at support.newrelic.com.