limitation in CAT framework

Mar 10, 2016 at 11:33 AM
I hear for the developers, there are certain limitation on this framework.
1) Tracing/logging works only for if start button is clicked on the GUI. it doesn't give option of enabling logging for certain set of interval based on a configurable value.
2) Log files will become readable only after stop button is clicked else it will be in non readable format.

can some one clarify if this is the case?
Mar 11, 2016 at 6:04 AM
1) This is an interactive GUI not intended for scheduled usage. Under the covers, it's just executing command line programs. You can easily automate the same programs yourself. See TraceManager.cs in the source code.
2) If you have real time formatting enabled, you should be able to see the logs as they are generated.

Mar 11, 2016 at 11:01 AM
Thanks for the quick response as always :)

I just went trough the TraceManager.cs in the source code, I see the process involves three steps, Start, Stop and convert binary to readable text format (All are done via ProcessStartInfo using commands). this looks tedious process in case we need to enable high level logging for ever.

I'm looking for real time logging which doesn't required BizTalk application to start, stop and convert binary to readable for human readable format every time.

for real time logging, do we need to run listeners (such as debug view) then only it captures logs??? Or it keeps logging to text file all the time??
Mar 14, 2016 at 4:52 AM
This tool is a view into the ETW (Event Tracing for Windows) framework in the OS, upon which sits the BizTalk trace framework. ETW is designed to handle huge volumes of trace messages with the ability to "sniff" the stream at will. It lets apps build in extensive tracing without giving up performance. You'll find another view into ETW in the Event Log MMC snapin under Applications and Services Logs.

One of the key limitations of ETW is the message size, so you'll be disappointed if you try to trace message bodies through it. Unless they're very small, they'll be truncated.

All of that said, you might want to choose a different framework and/or technology. .NET has a built-in class (EventSource) that lets you log events to ETW, which is a much simpler and cleaner option than the CAT framework. Since it's not suitable for message body logging, unless they are very small, you'll still need another solution for that.

As for the BizTalk CAT IF Controller, you can start a trace and have it record to a file without having DebugView open, but you won't be able to read the file until the trace is stopped and the file is processed.

I hope that helps.