Make logging useful with Timber.io

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Check out Timber.io for more details on how to make logging work for you.

Timber

  1. What is timber?
  2. Examples
  3. Pricing
  4. Install

What is Timber?

Glad you asked :) Timber tames the crazy world that is logging. First, it automatically augments your logs with structured data. Second, it provides a transparent, no lock-in, API for logging your own events. Lastly, it can be paired with a simple modern console for querying.

For example, it automatically turns this:

Completed 200 OK in 117ms (Views: 85.2ms | ActiveRecord: 25.3ms)

Into this:

{
  "dt": "2016-12-01T02:23:12.236543Z",
  "level": "info",
  "message": "Completed 200 OK in 117ms (Views: 85.2ms | ActiveRecord: 25.3ms)",
  "context": {
    "http": {
      "method": "GET",
      "path": "/checkout",
      "remote_addr": "123.456.789.10",
      "request_id": "abcd1234"
    },
    "user": {
      "id": 2,
      "name": "Ben Johnson",
      "email": "[email protected]"
    }
  },
  "event": {
    "http_response": {
      "status": 200,
      "time_ms": 117
    }
  }
}

It does the same for http requests, sql queries, exceptions, template renderings, and any other event your framework logs. (for a full list see Timber::Events)

This enables you to query your logs in a way that even your mother would get excited about!

  1. context.user.email:[email protected] - Tail a specific user!
  2. context.http.request_id:1234 - View all logs for a given HTTP request!
  3. event.http_reponse.time_ms>3000 - Easily find outliers and have the proper context to resolve them!
  4. level:warn - Log levels in your logs. Imagine that!

Examples

Another service? More lock-in? More code debt? More sadness? :*(

Nope! This is exactly why we created Timber. Timber is Just Logging™. No special API, no risk of code debt, no weird proprietary data format locked away in our servers. Absolutely no lock-in!

Besides automatically capturing known events, you can also log custom events. Check it out:

# Simple string (original Logger interface remains untouched)
Logger.warn "Payment rejected for customer abcd1234, reason: Card expired"

# Structured hash
Logger.warn message: "Payment rejected", type: :payment_rejected,
  data: %{customer_id: "abcd1234", amount: 100, reason: "Card expired"}

# Using a Struct
PaymentRejectedEvent = Struct.new(:customer_id, :amount, :reason) do
  def message; "Payment rejected for #{customer_id}"; end
  def type; :payment_rejected; end
end
Logger.warn PaymentRejectedEvent.new("abcd1234", 100, "Card expired")

(for more examples, see the Timber::Logger docs)

No Timber specific code anywhere! In fact, this approach pushes things the opposite way. What if, as a result of structured logging, you could start decoupling other services from your application?

Before:

               |---[HTTP]---> sentry / bugsnag / etc
My Application |---[HTTP]---> librato / graphite / etc
               |---[HTTP]---> new relic / etc
               |--[STDOUT]--> logs
                                |---> Logging service
                                |---> S3
                                |---> RedShift

After:

                                                    |-- sentry / bugsnag / etc
                                                    |-- librato / graphite / etc
My Application |--[STDOUT]--> logs ---> Timber ---> |-- new relic / etc
                               ^                    |-- S3
                               |                    |-- RedShift
                               |                                 ^
                    fast, efficient, durable,                    |
                     replayable, auditable,        change any of these without
                          just logging                  touching your code
                                                       *and* backfill them!

Pricing

This is all gravy, but wouldn't it get expensive?

If you opt to send your data to the Timber service, we only charge for the size of the message, dt, and event.custom attributes. Everything else is stored at no cost to you. Say wha?!. This ensures pricing remains predictable. And our pricing is simple, we charge per GB transferred to us and retained, no user limits, and no weird feature matrixes. Lastly, the data is yours, in a simple non-proprietary JSON format.

For more details checkout our timber.io.

Install

1. Install the gem:

# Gemfile
gem 'timberio', require: "timber"

2. Install the logger:

Heroku:

# config/environments/production.rb (or staging, etc)
config.logger = ActiveSupport::TaggedLogging.new(Timber::Logger.new(STDOUT))

The command to add your log drain will be displayed in the Timber app after you add your application.

Non-Heroku:

# config/environments/production.rb (or staging, etc)
log_device = Timber::LogDevices::HTTP.new(ENV['TIMBER_KEY']) # key can be obtained by signing up at https://timber.io
config.logger = ActiveSupport::TaggedLogging.new(Timber::Logger.new(log_device))

Your Timber application key will be displayed in the Timber app after you add your application.

Other transport methods coming soon!


That's it! Log to your heart's content.

For documentation on logging structured events, and other features, checkout the docs. For more information on Timber visit timber.io.

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