Debugging and optimizing performance on Drupal and WordPress sites often involves the use of logs, either from the application or the web server. Pantheon provides access to logs for each application container and database; these logs are helpful when attempting to correlate application issues to traffic, external API integration, or other externalities.
Log aggregation and analysis services allow for collection of data from the application and the Pantheon platform; this can be combined with logging from many other channels, such as social media or e-commerce platforms. Having more visibility into an application’s detailed activity and being alerted when unexpected incidents occur give application management teams a head start towards faster resolution.
Loggly is a SaaS service which provides log management and analysis. Logs can be collected in real-time over HTTP in some cases or by forwarding text-based logs. From this data, reports and data visualizations can be created and customized, making it easier to spot and troubleshooting intermittent Drupal and WordPress issues, such as slow external services or heavy traffic spikes. It also provides alerting when critical issues occur. Loggly also integrates with other applications such as Jira, allowing a user to quickly turn an anomalous log into a trouble ticket.
Pantheon users can forward server logs to Loggly, as well as stream certain data over http to Loggly. Additionally application performance issues spotted in New Relic can be easily accessed in Loggly via a Chrome extension. For many common debugging issues, this an excellent way to search for correlated server events that may provide more detail than New Relic alone provides.
Many organizations have built their log monitoring process around the combination of three open source tools: Logstash, which collects and prepares messages for storage, Elasticsearch, which stores this data and provides an API for search access, and Kibana, an analytics and visualization tool. These applications bundled together are known as the ELK stack. Logz.io offers a managed, pre-configured, optimized version of an ELK stack. As ELK is a widely used, open source set of tools, there is a large community to seek help from, as well as Logz.io support and community.
Sites on Pantheon can integrate with Logz.io’s service by using FTP to access appserver files and pushing to their customized, managed ELK stack. Alerts can be set based on a wide variety of parameters. Drupal or WordPress logs can safely be sent over HTTP in certain cases, as well.
Splunk is a log aggregation and business intelligence platform that collects logs, monitors web traffic, and allows users to interact with this data. Managers of Drupal or WordPress websites can create alerts based on relevant parameters: PHP error messages or an unexpected volume or web requests, for example.
Pantheon provides access to all website application containers via SFTP. An external forwarding server can be setup to periodically collect this data from all application containers and send to Splunk. Additionally New Relic, an application monitoring service provided to all sites on Pantheon can be connected to the Splunk instance for additional data collection. Finally, Drupal Watchdog logs can also be fed into Splunk on Pantheon in certain use cases. Alerts from Splunk can be forwarded to PagerDuty or other alerting services for Agencies providing SLA-based support for websites.