Welcome!

Open Source Cloud Authors: Mehdi Daoudi, Liz McMillan, Xenia von Wedel, Stackify Blog, Vaibhaw Pandey

Related Topics: Java IoT, Open Source Cloud, Machine Learning

Java IoT: Article

Asynchronous Logging Using Spring

Create applications that require high-volume logging without impacting an application’s performance

Each application developer faces the problem of logging usage information. On the one hand, the more logging that's done the easier it is to detect and locate the source of problems. On the other hand, large volume logging might impair an application's performance.

This problem is typically solved by defining various log levels dependent on a program's maturity. For example, a program in developmental stages would have a higher logging requirements; logging requirements would be relatively lower in the production phase. If an application requires a lot of logging for audit purposes, then special measures are required to protect performance.

This article provides a possible solution for this problem by using Spring asynchronous support.

Rationale for High-Volume Logging
Logging is used extensively to help find problems within applications. A developer who finds a problem can investigate it by enabling debug logging. He may then reproduce the problem, or create additional logging if needed. Programmers usually require extensive logging to locate problems.

However, the aforementioned process is not a universal solution. If a developer comes across a one-time event that does not happen again, then he has to uncover and fix the problem using only existing log data. For instance, a security problem should not be resolved by enabling full logging and waiting for another intrusion. Such cases require a lot of logging upfront.

Above and beyond the use of logging for application development, regulatory compliance requirements also demand a minimum amount of logging.

Possible Solutions
The simplest solution would be to log everything synchronously, right inside business logic methods. Of course this solution would reduce processing speed, but if an application does not have strict performance requirements, it might not be a problem.

A developer may also use some existing solutions, such as synchronous logging. Examples include log4j, AsyncAppender, and JMS. The latter is especially useful if none of the logging events should be lost.

Very often logging operations are not very fast because, for reliability purposes, these logs are often written either to a database or to a remote server. In addition, data may be subject to operations before they can be logged.

Consider a simple case when logging is needed, but performance should not be affected.

Please note that threads may not necessarily execute in the same order as they were called, so you'll have to sort the logged events by timestamp in order to have them in chronological order.

Spring 3.0 Asynchronous Support
Overview

Spring 2.0 provided a TaskExecutor abstraction that could be used for running asynchronous tasks. Evolution to version 3.0 enabled annotations to be used for this purpose. Refer to the Task Execution and Scheduling section in the Spring 3.0 documentation.

There are several built-in TaskExecutor implementations, and not all of them are asynchronous. For example, the SyncTaskExecutor invokes a task in the calling thread.

This article will concentrate on the ThreadPoolTaskExecutor - the most commonly used implementation in the Java 5 environment.

The ThreadPoolTaskExecutor provides the following configurable parameters:

pool-size: Defines the size of a pool; it also accepts a "core-max" range. The "core" is the initial number of threads in a pool; the "max" is the maximum number of threads. If only one number is defined, then the core and max are the same size.

Please note that the executor will first use the core number of threads, and then add threads to the pool only when the queue is full.

queue-capacity: Refers to the size of the task queue when all threads are busy. By default the queue is unlimited. That might lead to an OutOfMemory exception and disrupt the application, therefore, a specific queue size should be defined.

rejection-policy: A parameter that determines what should happen if both the thread pool and queue are full. In this case the task is rejected, and then the rejection policy determines what should happen to it.

The following policies are supported:

  • AbortPolicy: Executor will throw a TaskRejectedException
  • DiscardPolicy: Tasks will be skipped
  • DiscardOldestPolicy: Oldest tasks will be skipped
  • CallerRunsPolicy: Task will be executed in caller thread (synchronously)

Spring 3.0 allows bean configuration using both Annotations and XML. We will consider Annotation and XML configuration of TaskExecutors only.

Here is a simple business class that requires logging.

@Service
public class BankOperator {

@Autowired

private BusinessLogger businessLogger;

public void transferMoney() {

//... business logic for transferring money
// writing log
businessLogger.logMoneyTransfer(new Date(), "John", new BigDecimal(100));
}
}

As you can see the businessLogger has a specific method for a specific business operation. Developers always pass the current timestamp and a number of parameters. The timestamp is needed because the logging method will be invoked asynchronously at an arbitrary time in the future. The list of parameters will depend on what kind of logging is done. Usually this kind of logging is saved to a database, so developers need a number of parameters that will be mapped to the fields of the database table.

The maximum possible amount of operations should utilize asynchronous logging.

For example, if logging information depends on an account number, years of service and the balance of a bank account, then it's better to pass these three parameters to a logging method. The logging logic would be implemented, thereby, lessening the influence of logging on execution of the primary service.

XML - configuration
The configuration of ThreadPoolTaskExecutor looks like this:

<bean id="businessLogExecutor" class="org.springframework.scheduling.concurrent.ThreadPoolTaskExecutor">
<property name="corePoolSize" value="1" />
<property name="maxPoolSize" value="1" />
<property name="queueCapacity" value="1" />
<property name="rejectedExecutionHandler" ref="callerRuns" />
</bean>

<bean id="callerRuns" class="java.util.concurrent.ThreadPoolExecutor.CallerRunsPolicy"/>

Spring 3.0 enables developers to use the ‘executor' element to create a ThreadPoolTaskExecutor instance:

<task:executor id="businessLogExecutor"
pool-size="5-25"
queue-capacity="100"
rejection-policy="CALLER_RUNS"/>

The logger class might look like the following:

public class AsyncBusinessLogger implements BusinessLogger {

private TaskExecutor taskExecutor;


public void setTaskExecutor(TaskExecutor taskExecutor) {

this.taskExecutor = taskExecutor;
}

public void logMoneyTransfer(final Date timestamp, final String customerName, final BigDecimal sum) {

taskExecutor.execute(new Runnable() {
public void run() {
System.out.println("Customer '" + customerName + "' transfered $" + sum + " on " + timestamp);
}
});
}
}

A BusinessLogger may resemble the following:

<bean id="businessLogger" class="com.axmor.async.logging.AsyncBusinessLogger">
<property name="taskExecutor" ref="businessLogExecutor" />
</bean>

Using XML configuration is a more flexible approach. A developer can tell many Business Loggers to use the same TaskExecutor, or tell a single Business Logger to use multiple TaskExecutors.

@Async annotation
To use the @Async annotation, turn on task annotation support by including the following in config.xml:

<task:annotation-driven />

In this case, the ThreadPoolTaskExecutor with default settings will be used.

To use the aforementioned executor, insert the following instead:

<task:annotation-driven executor="businessLogExecutor"/>

The logger will look like the following:

@Service
public class AsyncBusinessLogger implements BusinessLogger {

@Async

public void logMoneyTransfer(Date timestamp, String customerName, BigDecimal sum) {
System.out.println("Customer '" + customerName + "' transfered $" + sum + " on " + timestamp);
}
}

The result is simpler and cleaner code. But a less flexible configuration comes at a price: all methods annotated with @Async will use the same TaskExecutor throughout the application.

@Async vs TaskExecutor: when to use
Using the @Async annotation is much simpler than having to wire the task executor to call tasks manually.

Usually the @Async annotation is the preferred method.

In cases where a developer doesn't want to use a single TaskExecutor for all asynchronous operations, which is the case for @Async annotation, he will have to use TaskExecutors.

Conclusion
Developers should strongly consider using asynchronous logging when creating applications that require high-volume logging without impacting an application's performance.

The article shows how easy it is to create your own custom asynchronous logging using Spring 3.0 Async support.

More Stories By Mylnikov Sergey

Mylnikov Sergey is a senior software engineer in the IBM Solution Group at Axmor Software. He has over seven years of experience in software development, as well as strong knowledge in Java SE/EE and web application development. He has been a technical lead and software architect in several successfully completed enterprise projects for US, UK, and Australian customers.

Comments (0)

Share your thoughts on this story.

Add your comment
You must be signed in to add a comment. Sign-in | Register

In accordance with our Comment Policy, we encourage comments that are on topic, relevant and to-the-point. We will remove comments that include profanity, personal attacks, racial slurs, threats of violence, or other inappropriate material that violates our Terms and Conditions, and will block users who make repeated violations. We ask all readers to expect diversity of opinion and to treat one another with dignity and respect.


@ThingsExpo Stories
"Cloud Academy is an enterprise training platform for the cloud, specifically public clouds. We offer guided learning experiences on AWS, Azure, Google Cloud and all the surrounding methodologies and technologies that you need to know and your teams need to know in order to leverage the full benefits of the cloud," explained Alex Brower, VP of Marketing at Cloud Academy, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 21st Cloud Expo, held Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clar...
In his session at 21st Cloud Expo, Carl J. Levine, Senior Technical Evangelist for NS1, will objectively discuss how DNS is used to solve Digital Transformation challenges in large SaaS applications, CDNs, AdTech platforms, and other demanding use cases. Carl J. Levine is the Senior Technical Evangelist for NS1. A veteran of the Internet Infrastructure space, he has over a decade of experience with startups, networking protocols and Internet infrastructure, combined with the unique ability to it...
"IBM is really all in on blockchain. We take a look at sort of the history of blockchain ledger technologies. It started out with bitcoin, Ethereum, and IBM evaluated these particular blockchain technologies and found they were anonymous and permissionless and that many companies were looking for permissioned blockchain," stated René Bostic, Technical VP of the IBM Cloud Unit in North America, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 21st Cloud Expo, held Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Conventi...
Gemini is Yahoo’s native and search advertising platform. To ensure the quality of a complex distributed system that spans multiple products and components and across various desktop websites and mobile app and web experiences – both Yahoo owned and operated and third-party syndication (supply), with complex interaction with more than a billion users and numerous advertisers globally (demand) – it becomes imperative to automate a set of end-to-end tests 24x7 to detect bugs and regression. In th...
Widespread fragmentation is stalling the growth of the IIoT and making it difficult for partners to work together. The number of software platforms, apps, hardware and connectivity standards is creating paralysis among businesses that are afraid of being locked into a solution. EdgeX Foundry is unifying the community around a common IoT edge framework and an ecosystem of interoperable components.
"MobiDev is a software development company and we do complex, custom software development for everybody from entrepreneurs to large enterprises," explained Alan Winters, U.S. Head of Business Development at MobiDev, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 21st Cloud Expo, held Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
Large industrial manufacturing organizations are adopting the agile principles of cloud software companies. The industrial manufacturing development process has not scaled over time. Now that design CAD teams are geographically distributed, centralizing their work is key. With large multi-gigabyte projects, outdated tools have stifled industrial team agility, time-to-market milestones, and impacted P&L stakeholders.
"Akvelon is a software development company and we also provide consultancy services to folks who are looking to scale or accelerate their engineering roadmaps," explained Jeremiah Mothersell, Marketing Manager at Akvelon, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 21st Cloud Expo, held Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
"Space Monkey by Vivent Smart Home is a product that is a distributed cloud-based edge storage network. Vivent Smart Home, our parent company, is a smart home provider that places a lot of hard drives across homes in North America," explained JT Olds, Director of Engineering, and Brandon Crowfeather, Product Manager, at Vivint Smart Home, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at @ThingsExpo, held Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
Coca-Cola’s Google powered digital signage system lays the groundwork for a more valuable connection between Coke and its customers. Digital signs pair software with high-resolution displays so that a message can be changed instantly based on what the operator wants to communicate or sell. In their Day 3 Keynote at 21st Cloud Expo, Greg Chambers, Global Group Director, Digital Innovation, Coca-Cola, and Vidya Nagarajan, a Senior Product Manager at Google, discussed how from store operations and ...
"There's plenty of bandwidth out there but it's never in the right place. So what Cedexis does is uses data to work out the best pathways to get data from the origin to the person who wants to get it," explained Simon Jones, Evangelist and Head of Marketing at Cedexis, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 21st Cloud Expo, held Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
SYS-CON Events announced today that CrowdReviews.com has been named “Media Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 22nd International Cloud Expo, which will take place on June 5–7, 2018, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. CrowdReviews.com is a transparent online platform for determining which products and services are the best based on the opinion of the crowd. The crowd consists of Internet users that have experienced products and services first-hand and have an interest in letting other potential buye...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Telecom Reseller has been named “Media Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 22nd International Cloud Expo, which will take place on June 5-7, 2018, at the Javits Center in New York, NY. Telecom Reseller reports on Unified Communications, UCaaS, BPaaS for enterprise and SMBs. They report extensively on both customer premises based solutions such as IP-PBX as well as cloud based and hosted platforms.
It is of utmost importance for the future success of WebRTC to ensure that interoperability is operational between web browsers and any WebRTC-compliant client. To be guaranteed as operational and effective, interoperability must be tested extensively by establishing WebRTC data and media connections between different web browsers running on different devices and operating systems. In his session at WebRTC Summit at @ThingsExpo, Dr. Alex Gouaillard, CEO and Founder of CoSMo Software, presented ...
WebRTC is great technology to build your own communication tools. It will be even more exciting experience it with advanced devices, such as a 360 Camera, 360 microphone, and a depth sensor camera. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Masashi Ganeko, a manager at INFOCOM Corporation, introduced two experimental projects from his team and what they learned from them. "Shotoku Tamago" uses the robot audition software HARK to track speakers in 360 video of a remote party. "Virtual Teleport" uses a multip...
A strange thing is happening along the way to the Internet of Things, namely far too many devices to work with and manage. It has become clear that we'll need much higher efficiency user experiences that can allow us to more easily and scalably work with the thousands of devices that will soon be in each of our lives. Enter the conversational interface revolution, combining bots we can literally talk with, gesture to, and even direct with our thoughts, with embedded artificial intelligence, whic...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Evatronix will exhibit at SYS-CON's 21st International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Evatronix SA offers comprehensive solutions in the design and implementation of electronic systems, in CAD / CAM deployment, and also is a designer and manufacturer of advanced 3D scanners for professional applications.
Leading companies, from the Global Fortune 500 to the smallest companies, are adopting hybrid cloud as the path to business advantage. Hybrid cloud depends on cloud services and on-premises infrastructure working in unison. Successful implementations require new levels of data mobility, enabled by an automated and seamless flow across on-premises and cloud resources. In his general session at 21st Cloud Expo, Greg Tevis, an IBM Storage Software Technical Strategist and Customer Solution Architec...
To get the most out of their data, successful companies are not focusing on queries and data lakes, they are actively integrating analytics into their operations with a data-first application development approach. Real-time adjustments to improve revenues, reduce costs, or mitigate risk rely on applications that minimize latency on a variety of data sources. In his session at @BigDataExpo, Jack Norris, Senior Vice President, Data and Applications at MapR Technologies, reviewed best practices to ...
An increasing number of companies are creating products that combine data with analytical capabilities. Running interactive queries on Big Data requires complex architectures to store and query data effectively, typically involving data streams, an choosing efficient file format/database and multiple independent systems that are tied together through custom-engineered pipelines. In his session at @BigDataExpo at @ThingsExpo, Tomer Levi, a senior software engineer at Intel’s Advanced Analytics gr...