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Quick news

  • 2014-03-27: MongoDB Watchdog module ported to Drupal 8 at the Szeged Dev Days.
  • 2014-01-26: My post on the Symfony web profiler in Silex selected in Week of Symfony. w00t !
  • 2013-10-18: My first commit went into MongoDB today. And, guess what ? It's in JavaScript
  • 2013-09-20 to 29: Working on Drupal 8 EntityAPI at the extended code sprints during and around DrupalCon Prague
  • 2012-08-19: Working on Drupal 8 EntityAPI at Drupalcon Munich
  • 2012-06-15: Working on Drupal 8 EntityAPI at DrupalDevDays Barcelona
  • 2012-03-23: Working on the future Drupal Document Oriented Storage at DrupalCon Denver. D8 or later ? Bets are on Later


Logging for MongoDB

One nice thing during Drupal 7/8 development is the ability, thanks to the devel module, to get a list of all SQL queries ran on a page. As I've been working quite a bit on MongoDB in PHP recently, I wondered how to obtain comparable results when using MongoDB in PHP projects. Looking at the D7 implementation, the magic happens in the Database class:

// Start logging on the default database.
define(DB_CHANNEL, 'my_logging_channel');

// Get the log contents, typically in a shutdown handler.
$log = \Database::getLog(DB_CHANNEL);

With DBTNG, that's all it takes, and devel puts it to good use UI-wise. So is there be an equivalent mechanism in MongoDB ? Of course there is !

Drupal 8 tip of the day : check menu links consistency

Excerpt from a Drupal 8 menu links treeOne of the interesting aspects of the revamped menu/links system in Drupal 8 is the fact that menu links are now in easily parseable YAML files, the "(module)" in each module, in which each menu link can be bound to its parent link, hopefully producing a tree-like structure.

Reducing redundancy in Doctrine Annotations loading

Doctrine Annotations is a central part of the Drupal 8 Plugin API. One of its conceptual annoyances is the need for a separate autoloading process for annotations, which in some scenarios leads to duplicated path declarations. Let us see how to remedy to it.

Tip of the day: Standalone DBTNG outside Drupal

A few days ago, while I was writing a bit of Silex code and grumbling at Doctrine DBAL's lack of support for a SQL Merge operation, I wondered if it wouldn't be possible to use DBTNG without the rest of Drupal.

Obviously, although DBTNG is described as having been designed for standalone use: DBTNG should be a stand-alone library with no external dependences other than PHP 5.2 and the PDO database library, in actual use, the Github DBTNG repo has seen no commit in the last 3 years, and the D8 version is still not a Drupal 8 "Component" (i.e. decoupled code), but still a plain library with Drupal dependencies. How would it fare on its own ? Let's give it a try...

PSR-4, really ?

Yesterday, Seldaek committed PSR-4 support to Composer, as his New Year's Day gift to the PHP community.

So, since I always supported PSR-4 in FIG discussions, and after the tl;dr discussion about it regarding autoloading in Drupal 8, I jumped on the occasion and converted the code base for PlusVite to PSR-4 to get an idea of how PSR-4 "felt" in practice.

The Drupal Block system from to Drupal 8: video from DrupalCon Prague

So DrupalCon Prague is almost over, and I can now share with you the video of my session about the history of the Drupal block system, from to Drupal 8, just as recorded on wednesday.

The session page is available on where you can also rate it. Please to it over there, or add your comments here: it is very useful for me to see what needs to be adjusted for upcoming presentations. Based on the overall feedback, it seems that:

Rethinking watchdog(): logging in Kohana 3

Continuing this exploration of logging solutions used in various projects, let's look at logging in Kohana 3.

Kohana 3.3 Logging - bundled classes While Monolog and log4php share a mostly common logging model of a frontal Logger object instantiated as many times as needed to supply different logging channels, in which log events are Processed/Filtered then written out by Handlers/Writers, Kohana builds upon a simpler model, which can be summarized by three patterns:

  • Singleton: there is only one instance of the Kohana Log
  • Observer: Log_Writer instances are attached (and detached) to(/from) the logger instance and handle events they are interested in based on their own configuration. Much like a Drupal hook, all writer instances receive each Log event
  • Delegation: the Log exposes a write() to trigger the buffered writing, but does not implement it itself, but delegates to the Log_Writer objects to perform it. Buffered logging control is a Log property, not a Log_Writer property.

Rethinking watchdog(): Monolog vs log4php

Beyond Monolog, other packages provide advanced logging services. Apache log4php is another well-known logging solution, used (among others) by CMS Made Simple, SugarCRM, and vTiger CRM.

It is based on the famous log4j package from the Java world, and from uses of this package I have seen on customer sites, I feel that it carries a lot of useless baggage, and is - in my opinion - significantly less of a good match than Monolog for Drupal 8.

Monolog vs log4php : equivalences

There is some degree of equivalence between the Monolog and log4php components:

Purpose Monolog log4php Notes
Log an event Logger Logger Very similar
Store an event Handler Appender both can be chained, group, control bubbling (Monolog) / filtering (log4php)
Format an event representation Formatter Layout log4php layouts can format a group of events, Monolog formatters format an individual event
Massage event data Processor Renderer Not so similar. Monolog processors will often add extra data, while log4php Renderers are typically used to format non-string events as strings.

Rethinking watchdog(): Monolog architecture

I've been discussing Monolog in Drupal events (DrupalCamp Lyon, DevDays Barcelona) as a possible alternative to the legacy Drupal watchdog() service for quite some time, but never took the time to explain it in writing, and the feature freeze date is looming ahead, so since I'm taking part in th Gent code sprint, and code has been starting to take shape here, here, and there, here is an overview of the Monolog classes.

The diagram below is a simplified version of the Monolog architecture. It includes all classes and interfaces, but only the most significant methods, no constants, and none of the non-bundled classes and interfaces upon which some of the builtins depend.

simplified class diagram for Monolog 1.1 (SVG rendering)

Overview of the pluginification of Field API in Drupal 8

If you have been wondering about the general organization of Field API in D8 and did not take time to work yched's existing D8 Field API sandbox, here is a simplified and cleaned-up version of the currently envisioned class and interface set.

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