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Since the update to Prometheus 2.0, the documentation still has to catch up. Because I’ve been debugging a custom written exporter, some unwanted metrics landed in my Prometheus.

This is how to delete those series.

Enable the Prometheus Admin API

Deleting the metrics is only available over the Admin API. You can enable it with a flag. Just edit your Prometheus start-up script and add:


My full CLI command now looks like this:

/usr/bin/prometheus --web.enable-admin-api --config.file=/etc/prometheus/prometheus.yaml --storage.tsdb.path=/var/lib/prometheus2 --storage.tsdb.retention=365d --web.external-url=https://xxx[redacted]xxx/prometheus/ --web.console.templates=/usr/share/prometheus/consoles --web.console.libraries=/usr/share/prometheus/console_libraries

Delete the Time Series

As you’ve probably noticed, I use a custom URL for Prometheus. Showing an example on how to delete the up series.

If you’re not using a custom URL:

curl --silent -H "Content-Type: application/json" -X POST -d '{"matchers":[{"type":"EQ","name":"__name__","value":"up"}]}' 'http://localhost:9090/api/v2/admin/tsdb/delete_series'|jq .

If you’re using a custom URL (example: /prometheus):

curl --silent -H "Content-Type: application/json" -X POST -d '{"matchers":[{"type":"EQ","name":"__name__","value":"up"}]}' 'http://localhost:9090/prometheus/api/v2/admin/tsdb/delete_series'|jq .

Other Matchers

Looking at the Source Code, the following matchers are available:

  • Equals: EQ
  • Not equal: NEQ
  • Regex match: RE
  • Regex not match: NRE

Later edit: Changed the link to the source code, since it’s bound to be fluid. This way, you will know what to look for in the current master.