Log4j2 Configuration: A Detailed Guide to Getting Started

We covered basic logging for Java applications a while back. In that tutorial, we used log4j version 2, a logging framework from the Apache project. Let’s go one step further with Java application logging and look at log4j2 configuration.

Log4j’s capabilities have made it one of Java’s most popular logging frameworks. It can be configured for multiple logging destinations and a variety of log file formats. Log messages can be filtered and directed at the individual class level, giving developers and operations personnel granular control over application messages.

Let’s examine these mechanisms by configuring log4j with a command line Java application.


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Get Started Quickly With Spring Boot Logging

Hot on the heels of the Get Started Quickly With Python Logging and Getting Started Quickly With C++ Logging articles, we’re headed across the coffee shop to look at logging in the context of the Java Spring Boot framework. While we’ve written already on the topic of Java logging in Get Started Quickly With Java Logging, the Spring Boot framework simplifies a lot of the plumbing involved in getting up and running. In this article we’ll learn how to:

  • Create a Spring Boot starter project
  • Use Gradle to build our application
  • Configure the default Spring Boot logger
  • Use Log4j2 with Spring Boot
  • Customize the logging configurations

Grab your Venti red-eye triple espresso with almond milk, and let’s get started!spring_boot_logging_scalyr

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Getting Started With the Rails Logger

Let’s continue our ongoing series on getting starting with loggers for different languages and platforms. Back in March, we covered logging with Ruby; now it’s time to take a look at the platform most often associated with that language, Rails.

We’ll start with a simple application with scaffolding for CRUD operations on a single record. We’ll look at Rails’ default logging configuration and how to use logging in an application. Then we’ll look at how logging can be improved and why you might want to improve it.

This tutorial uses Ruby v2.5.1 and Rails 5.2.0. You’ll need to have them installed to follow along. These instructions will use the command line to create and configure the application and will not rely on a specific IDE or editor. We’ll let Rails use SQLite for the backend database.rails_logger_scalyr

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The Summer of #SmoothScalin

Welcome to the summer of #SmoothScalin.

Hi, I’m Brett, a rising junior in college, I’ve taken surprisingly few classes that really take a deep dive into my majors, Information Systems, and Marketing. With graduation on the horizon, this used to concern me because I felt unprepared to enter the working world as graduation looms on the horizon. However, this summer I was fortunate enough to land a marketing operations internship at Scalyr. I’ve gained experience, confidence, a network, and a few really cool t-shirts.

After being at Scalyr for six weeks, I can confidently say I’ve learned more about marketing and what it’s like to work at a fast-paced startup than I have in two years of undergrad business classes. While I may be an intern, I’ve had a chance to work in depth on many projects ranging from designing and building landing pages to creative brainstorming for projects and engagements. One of the projects I’ve been working on is #SmoothScalin and I’m pleased to share it with you now.

What is #SmoothScalin?

#SmoothScalin is a program benefiting engineers and DevOps teams at startups. Early days for a startup can be like rough waters (believe us, we know!), especially as your team grows and – especially if you’re delivering software -as you start really ramping development. So, to help you meet the challenges that that growth can bring, we want to give you access to Scalyr. We use Scalyr to monitor our own system, which helps a ton because we’re moving super fast (don’t worry, we have a backup to help us avoid recursive errors). But enough about that; let me get to the offer!

In short, we’re offering one free year (from now until October 31, 2019) of Scalyr’s blazing-fast log management platform to startups that have received their A or B series funding within the last year.

Why should you sign up for #SmoothScalin?

Plain and simple: You get a log management platform that will help your entire team aggregate, monitor, manage, and search all of your log files. We promise you will be blown away by our speed, simplicity, and shareability. And when you’re on the front line of software delivery, that means something. Our ability to search 1.5 TBs of logs per second will totally reduce the amount of time you spend troubleshooting and debugging time. What that means to you is the same query that takes you 15 minutes in your traditional log management tool will take you less than one second in Scalyr. Besides being wicked fast, we’re also simple to use. How many hours have you spent futzing around with the query language in those traditional tools (or waiting in line for the PhD guru gatekeeper who knows how to do it – ugh!). Finally, Scalyr is shareable. We don’t mean we have a share button (okay, we do have a share button), but that the whole team can use it. Traditional tools either charge by the user, slow way down, or the company will throttle your usage. We don’t. The whole darn team can pound the crap out of Scalyr and you’ll be fine. We’re architected for this sort of thing.

What does your free year look like?

You’ll receive all the features of the Scalyr platform, along with the ability to add as many users as you want. We will also offer support and setup assistance for those who would like it. Also, you can upload up to 5GB/day of log volume on a 15-day retention. (Note that anything over the 5GB/day amount will be charged at our per GB list price of $40 per month, so it’ll still be a steal for you if you’re lucky (and good!) enough to grow fast and generate a ton of data!)

Pretty straightforward, right?

So what do you need to do?

Start by checking out the details on #SmoothScalin.
Then submit your application and we’ll take it from there.

And if you want to know more about Scalyr, check out the information on our homepage.

Not a startup who’s raised an A or B round, but still dogged by slow, complex, or non-shareable log management? Check us out anyway because we’re still a great deal. Check out our customer love on G2 Crowd, or if you’re more of a starched-shirt type, read why Gartner named us a Cool Vendor.

And may your summer (and the entire year) be #SmoothScalin.

Kubernetes: The Next VMware?

It’s been almost 10 years since VMware started selling ESX version 4.0. This set the path for VMware to dominate more than 75% of the virtualization market in 2017. Gartner considers this market “matured” since most of its revenue comes from maintenance instead of new licensing. Many companies have consolidated their workloads with virtualization, but there are new problems to solve.

Delivering, testing, deploying, and scaling applications are among these challenges. Teams that implement microservices also need to automate as much as possible to make them manageable. Kubernetes, Marathon, Swarm, and Nomad compose a new breed of tools that respond to these needs through orchestration. If you host on-premises or in the cloud, consider them to help your business more quickly deliver code to production.

Companies evolving towards data-driven decision-making often implement machine learning and business intelligence tools, looking for an edge in their markets. As information technology professionals, it’s our responsibility to make sure our businesses select tools that

  • perform in a reliable way;
  • allow quick deployment of new features;
  • scale properly in response to user demand; and
  • deploy new software in a safe and reproducible way.

In this article, I explain why I think Kubernetes is a market leader in the orchestration space and how it might steal VMware’s thunder in the not-so-distant future.


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Getting Started Quickly With C++ Logging

Since publishing my article Get Started Quickly With Python Logging, I’ve been working on a couple of C++ projects where I’ve found a need for more robust logging solutions than a simple time stamp and message written to a file. Since we also have articles on logging for C# and Java, it made sense to continue the series with an article on C++ logging with Boost.Log. Specifically in this article we are going to:

  • Create a simple Visual Studio 2017 project.
  • Install the Boost libraries using the NuGet package manager.
  • Learn how to configure log output formatting.
  • Add custom attributes to our logger.

This article is a big one, so strap in and let’s get started.


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Modern software is great, but when it comes to observability, gird your loins!

This won’t come as a shock, but engineers who are on the hook to develop revenue-generating software are quickly moving away from traditional, monolithic architectures and delivering code faster than ever. This trend is especially evident among Scalyr customers, but we wanted to understand how it is generally unfolding and how it affects DevOps observability. We surveyed 155 software development practitioners in DevOps-focused organizations over the last couple of months, and just released our State of DevOps Observability Report. You can download the full report here or check out its summary in this infographic, but in this blog I’ll give you the Cliff’s Notes version of what we found.

Croped infographic on DevOps Observability

We confirmed that organizations really are shifting away from traditional, monolithic architectures. Three-quarters of survey respondents say they deliver at least some of their applications, and more than one-third deliver most of their applications, as microservices. They are also delivering software rapidly, with 71 percent of engineers pushing code into production at least weekly and nearly one-third doing so at least daily. Looking at all of our survey findings through the lens of these two trends, we realize that modern software delivery is putting pressure on DevOps observability.

Here are some of our findings:

Companies are delivering software in a modern way.

  • Three-quarters of respondents deliver some and more than one-third deliver most of their applications as microservices.
  • 71 percent of engineers push code at least once per week, and nearly one-third push code at least once per day.

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Containers and Kubernetes vs VMs vs Config Management

In today’s DevOps-centered world, it’s often easy to be taken in by the infrastructure solution of the hour—VMs for everyone! Or wait, now containers are where it’s at! Who needs config management anyway?

Those of us that are primarily developers probably haven’t had to think about infrastructure decisions as much as our friends on the operations side. Since we haven’t had to make those decisions in the past, it can be hard to figure out what’s out there and why you’d want to use things like VMs or containers. We need to consider what actual problem these solutions are trying to solve. So let’s start simply.


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