Configurable logging support in RoboHelp Server 9

Thursday, March 31 2011 @ 7:34 AM, By Tulika Garg

 

RoboHelp Server keeps track of server progress and events in log files which are stored on disk. Any exception/error on server side are logged in the log files. These log files are simple text files and can be viewed in notepad. They are very helpful in troubleshooting server issues/problems and the first step in resolving any issue in RoboHelp Server is analyzing the log files.

For RoboHelp Server, these log files are located in “logs” folder inside Tomcat installation directory. Say, if Tomcat is installed at “C:\Program Files\Apache Tomcat”, then log files will be stored in “C:\Program Files\Apache Tomcat\logs” folder. Tomcat logs folder contain a lot of different kind of log files which contain log messages from both Tomcat itself and also RoboHelp Server.

Till RoboHelp Server 8, logs were distributed over many log files contained inside Tomcat logs folder for e.g. stdout.log , localhost.log etc. Beginning with RoboHelp Server 9, RoboHelp Server logs are consolidated in single file called robohelpserver.log file. Any error/exception logged in robohelpserver.log file contains exact date/time of the error and also the complete exception stack trace which is very useful for debugging server issues.

RoboHelp Server 9 uses Apache Log4j library for creating server logs.  Now users can also customize the format of these log files using the “log4j.properties” file located inside “<RHS 9 Install Path>\WEB-INF\classes” folder. Users can control various setting using “log4j.properties” such as –

  1. Whether to truncate log files when they grow in size and if yes, what is the maximum size
  2. Maximum number of files  to be backed up before purging old data
  3. Log file name
  4. Date and time format to be logged in  the log files

By default log4j.properties file has been configured to chunk robohelpserver.log file when it grows to 2MB. When robohelpserver.log file grows beyond 2MB, it is renamed to robohelpserver.log.1 ( and then robohelpserver.log.2, robohelpserver.log.3 and so on) and newer logs are written to robohelpserver.log file. By default 1000 such backup log files can be created after which oldest log files are deleted to create space for new log files.  So by default, at any given time, maximum 2000MB of RoboHelp Server logs are stored.

These default settings can be easily changed by opening “<RHS 9 Install Path>\WEB-INF\classes\log4j.properties” in notepad and making the desired changes. User will have to restart Tomcat for the logging configuration changes to take effect.

For example,

  • To chunk robohelpserver.log file at 10MB size, just change log4j.appender.R.MaxFileSize=2MB to log4j.appender.R.MaxFileSize=10MB
  • To backup only 10 log files, change log4j.appender.R.MaxBackupIndex=1000 to log4j.appender.R.MaxBackupIndex=10

More details on each of the configuration setting and it’s meaning is available on Apache Log4j site.

Tulika Goel
Adobe RoboHelp Team.

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