One of the goals that I set for myself with the NHibernate Profiler is to be able to run on unmodified NHibernate 2.0. The way that I do that is by intercepting and parsing the log stream from NHibernate.
NHibernate logging is extremely rich and detailed, so anything I wanted to do so far was possible. I am pretty sure that there would come a time when a feature would require more invasive approaches, running profiler code in the client application to gather more information, but for now this is enough.
I did run into several problems with logging interception. Ideally, I want this to happen on the fly, as we go. So I really want to get the real time logging stream. The problem is how to do so. I started with the UdpAppender, but that doesn't work on Vista in the released version. Remoting Appender is what I am using now, but it has one critical issue, it is an async appender, so message can (and do) appear out of order.
The message order is pretty important to the profiler. It can deal with that, but it would lead to surprising results. So that one is out as well.
The only other appender that comes out of the box with log4net and can be used remotedly is the telnet appender, which is next on the list for exploring. It does mean that the profiler has to connect to the application, rather than the other way around, which can be a problem.
I built an appender that fit my needs, and I am using it now to test how the profiler works, but before starting to deal with the telnet appender, I thought it would be a good time to ask.
How important is "running on unmodified NHibernate" is?
I am not talking about having a profiler build of NHibernate, I am talking about doing things like using the profiler appender, or registering an HttpModule.