Logging – a Guide from Start to Finish

The information technology team in any business is likely underappreciated and known to be extremely overworked. Given today’s environment and expectations of technology, it’s largely unfair to this particular team. Not only does your team actually understand how physically demanding but also mentally demanding, they must work with the rest of your company believing their job is easy.

The Problems that Can Occur

There are way too many logs for any one person to manage. Logs collect all variety of errors, and in that vein errors are frequent. Even something as simple as an error that affects nothing can prompt a log message. Then there are logs that collect messages for seemingly no reason. API logs, for example, collect administrative action for any great number of things. But the issue when it comes to IT is that they’ve now a barn full of hay and they’re looking for a needle.

Essentially, logs have overrun IT departments everywhere. While large companies use only the most extreme of alerts, there are many other opportunities to put into action for smaller companies. Smaller companies may not have the license to allow certain alerts to run without attention or even intervention.


Many IT personnel have taken to building logs that track building and development activities to replace traditional logs. It can even help you replace some aspects of development, such as documentation that even Agile methods require. The documentation that is put into motion during the building of an app, software, or even simple database, is vital for every change that happens afterward. Even in the most lightweight methods of building and structuring, it’s impossible to escape the need for extensive documentation fully. Build logs are working on automating part of these processes and capturing key elements in the development process.

Joint or Combined

Combining or joining various logs through a system can help IT staff by at least bringing everything into one platform. One example is Heroku logging, which combines a number of logs together into one location. It pulls the logs together into one channel and aggregates them through different categories so someone could quickly funnel through them. For example, someone looking for an issue with a customer reported add-on service could quickly sort through their add-on logs

Storing and Managing Data

Although some log data is meant to stick around for years, such as build logs, it doesn’t mean they need to be accessible straight away. Instead, you need to consider archiving logs that you need to refer to later. While you may consolidate or outright eliminate logs that serve no purpose after a certain extent of time.

Apps, software, and databases that rely on log messaging can quickly have far too much in their storage and reach capacity. Avoid that mistake by planning archives, consolidation, and clearing calendars well ahead of time. Make it clear what rules will justify archiving rather than clearing or consolidating. Logs can quickly build up in storage, so it’s not ideal to store everything.