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Java logging 2.0: Log4j undergoes major upgrade

JAXenter Editorial Team

Old developer faithful now offers next-generation Asynchronous Loggers, auto-extension detection, and support for properties.

After being teased with the first release candidate five months ago, Log4j users are celebrating that the major release of Apache Log4j 2.0 has finally gone live. The Java logging framework, launched in 1996 as an EU Semper project, has undergone a number of revisions in its second major version, as the Release Notes show.

The headline news is that the API for Log4j is separate from the implementation, making it clear for application developers which classes and methods they can use while ensuring forward compatibility. According to the Log4j team, this helps them to improve the implementation in a safe and compatible fashion.

Log4j 2.0 is chock-a-block with next-generation Asynchronous Loggers, based on the LMAX Disruptor library. This means that, in multi-threaded scenarios, Asynchronous Loggers have “10 times higher throughput and orders of magnitude lower latency than Log4j 1.x and Logback.”  Otherwise, Log4j 2 performs faster than Log4j 1.x in critical areas and similarly to Logback under most circumstances. 

Thanks Log4js plug-in architecture. extensions of the framework are automatically detected and included when plug-ins are referenced in the configuration.

Also new is that properties are supported , ie properties of defined values ​​from the configuration file, the system properties, environment variables, the Thread Context Map and data from the log event. Using a lookup plug-ins can be configured individually with PropertyProvider.

Log4j 2.0 requires Java 6 or later versions of the language, and is not compatible with Log4j 1.x. . However, adapters for older APIs are available, as well as for Commons Logging and SLF4J. Log4j is under Apache 2.0 license and may differ from the corresponding download page related to the Apache Foundation.

Already almost two years ago, there was reason to believe that version 2.0 of the Log4j software would frame a dramatic “Comeback of the Year” narrative for the technology. “What year?” would, in retrospect, have been quite legitimate question, with certain Twitterati scoffing that release is around a decade overdue. But it was all well worth the wait – and Logj4 2.0 is all the more impressive an achievement when you consider the sheer perseverance required from the project team to make sure it all came together in the end.

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