{"Logging APIs"}

Log Files Are Only For When Things Go Wrong

I'm always amazed at the number of companies I work with that do not consider log files a first class data system. Log files for servers, web servers, and other systems or applications are only for when something goes wrong. I have to admit, I'm in the same situation. I have APIs on the logging for my API management layer, but I do not have easy API access to my Linux servers or the Apache web server that runs on top of them. 

I know that some companies use popular solutions like New Relic to do this, and I keep track on about eight API friendly logging solutions. I'm going to have to spend some time in my API logging research digging around for a solution I can use to stand up an API for my server(s). I'm not looking for any tooling on top of it, just something dead simple to parse my log files, put into a database, and allow me to wrap in a simple API for developing things on top of it.

The first thing I'll build is some analytics. Maybe there is some ready-to-go solution already out there, that are API-drive and familiar with server, or web server logs? It bothers me that logs aren't a first class data system in my operations. Maybe the awareness of crafting and developing against a logging API would help me get more in tune with this layer of data exhaust being generated from my operations daily. I'm guessing it will also help me get a handle on performance and security across my systems, helping take the health my operations up a notch or two.

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Connecting My API Logging With My API DNS Using CloudFlare Page Rules API

As I'm spending time learning more about what my DNS provider CloudFlare offers when it comes to securing my APIs. To facilitate this, I am playing around with how I can utilize my Apache log files, to help me better drive the definition of DNS security using the CloudfFare API. I guess this is kind of a real time reactive, but also hopefully eventually a proactive solution to quantifying and defining the frontline of my API operations.

I originally embarked on this endeavor to help me manage some of the shift in the API Evangelist network and help mitigate 404 errors across my network of API research. I had recently migrated what I call my API Stack research to a new domain (stack.network), and I am anticipating quite a few broken links in stories over the years that reference this area of my work. I have been trying to attack this from the content level by rewriting links as I find them, but I'm thinking I could automate this using my Apache log files and setting up PageRules using CloudFlareAPIs as well.

Once I started sifting through the Apache log files I began to see other traffic patterns that were more in the area of security, then with the stability of my platform and its linkages. As with any type of log file, it is taking some time for all of this to come into focus for me. I will have to spend a great deal of time evaluating traffic from specific IP ranges, user agents, etc., but I know I should be able to quickly establish some rules at the DNS level that will better help me lock down the front line of my API traffic.

Right now I am just keeping my Apache log files backed up to Amazon S3 to help alleviate server load, and keep around for historical purposes. I have built a log file viewer for sifting through my API traffic, and at the moment I'm manually creating page rules in CloudFlare, but it is something I hope to automate via the CloudFlare API once I have established an awareness of the common types of rules I will be creating. Once I evolve to this point I will write about again, and hopefully talk more about how API access to the logging for my API traffic, in conjunction with how API at the DNS level for my API is helping me better define and secure the frontline of my API operations.

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Amazon S3 - Access Logging

I was mapping some subdomains to various Amazon S3 buckets today. I decided to use the new Amazon S3 interface available in the Amazon Console, instead of S3Fox for a change.

I was setting the permissions for a new bucket and I noticed the logging feature for each bucket. For some reason this has escaped me. I see in the developers area that S3 Logging has been around for years?

Anyways, you can set access logging for each bucket. Seems like a perfect feature to help deal with security concerns about storing data in the clouds. The logging feature is a great tool if you are required keep detailed logs of who accessed your data.

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