Sunday, April 8, 2012

What is Tracing and what are the advantages of using tracing to log exceptions?

What is Tracing and what are the advantages of using tracing to log exceptions?
Answer: Tracing is a technique for recording events, such as exceptions, in an application. There have always been ways to record errors in an application - usually by opening a file and writing error messages to it. But tracing offers the following significant advantages:
Standardization:Building tracing into the .NET Framework ensures that programming techniques are the same across all the applications you develop with the .NET Framework.
Built-in Web support:ASP.NET extends the .NET Framework tools by including information related to the performance and behavior of Web requests.
Configuration:You can turn tracing on and off using settings in your application’s configuration file. You don’t have to recompile your application to enable or disable tracing.
Performance:While disabled, tracing statements do not affect application performance.


How do you turn tracing on and off for an ASP.NET web application?

Answer: Tracing can be turned on or off for an entire Web application or for an individual page in the application:
1. To turn tracing on for an entire application, in the application’s Web.config file, set the trace element’s Enabled attribute to True.
Or
2. To turn tracing on for a single page, set the DOCUMENT object’s Trace property to True in the Visual Studio .NET Properties window. This sets the @ Page directive’s Trace attribute to True in the Web form’s HTML.

Where is the trace output displayed by default?

Answer: By default, trace output is displayed at the end of each Web page.
While this is fine for debugging purposes, you’ll generally want to write trace output to a log file when you start testing your completed application. To write trace messages to a log file for an entire application, in the application’s Web.config file, set the trace element’s PageOutput attribute to False. ASP.NET then writes trace output to the Trace.axd file in your application’s root folder.

How do you specify, how many page requets should be written to the trace log?

Answer: The element's RequestLimit attribute can be used to specify how many page requests to write to the trace log. For example, the following line from a Web.config file turns on tracing for the application and writes the first 10 requests to the Trace.axd file:
How do you write trace messages to a log file for only selected pages in an application?
To write trace messages to a log file for only selected pages in an application, follow these steps:
In the application’s Web.config file, set the trace element’s Enabled attribute to True and PageOutput attribute to False.
For each Web page you want to exclude from tracing, set the @ Page directive’s Trace attribute to False.

What is the difference between Trace.Write() and Trace.Warn() methods of a trace object?

Answer: The Trace object provides the Write and Warn methods to allow you to write messages to a request’s trace information. The two methods are identical with one difference: messages written with Trace.Write are displayed in black, whereas messages written with Trace.Warn are displayed in red.

How do you programatically check if tracing is enabled?

Answer: The Trace object’s IsEnabled property can be used to programatically check if tracing is enabled.

How do you prevent from trace output being written at the bottom of the web page?

Answer: You can prevent from trace output being written at the bottom of the web page by setting the trace element’s PageOutput attribute to False in the Web.config file.

What is the name of the file to which trace log is written?

Answer: Trace.axd

Can you view Trace.axd from a remote machine?

Answer: No, by default, you can view Trace.axd only from the local server running the application. If you want to view the trace log from a remote machine, set the trace element’s LocalOnly attribute to False in the Web.config file

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