Re: Transfer data between java programs

Nigel Wade <>
Fri, 04 Jan 2008 14:36:39 +0000
Yao Qi wrote:

We write a java tool which could record runtime information, such as
thread call stacks, of java applications, and these runtime information
is printed to stdout.

Now, we write an Eclipse plugin as an UI for this java tool, launch our
java tool in our Eclipse plugin, and show these runtime information by
TreeItem or TreeColum in Eclipse plugin. It seems that we have to
transfer runtime information from user's java application to our Eclipse
plugin. Here are some choices in my mind,

1) Parse the output in stdout. Since our runtime information is printed
in stdout, we could extract them from stdout.
2) Socket. We could set up a socket to communicate between our java
tool and Eclipse plugin UI. It is complicated to package runtime
information, send, and build runtime information in Eclipse plugin.

  +-----+ +--------+ +-------+
  | | | | | |
  | App |--------> | Tool |----+--->|Eclipse|
  | | | | | | |
  +-----+ +--------+ | +-------+
                                 | +-------+
                                 | | |
                                 +--->|stdout |
                                      | |

At the same time, I don't want to remove the ability to print to stdout,
because sometimes, we want to show runtime information in console, while
runtime information could be shown in Eclipse plugin if our tool is
launched from our Eclipse.

I would look into using log4j. You can easily get the application to log using
log4j. This can be to a file, to stdout, or any other location which log4j
provides - and if it doesn't provide what you want you create your own
logger/appender. You can log to multiple places at the same time, so stdout and
file if you want both.

How do I get runtime information in Eclipse plugin?

You could parse the output from a log4j log file. You could do as I have done
and implement a log4j RMI client/server logger/appender pair, where the RMI
client is a log4j appender which sends its log messages to a RMI server/logger.
The RMI server could be within your Eclipse plugin. This method also allows
multiple clients to send messages to the same [remote] logger.

How do I achieve "output switch between Eclipse and stdout" easily?

log4j.configuration. This file controls which log4j loggers/appenders log4j uses
to actually log the messages.

Nigel Wade, System Administrator, Space Plasma Physics Group,
            University of Leicester, Leicester, LE1 7RH, UK
E-mail :
Phone : +44 (0)116 2523548, Fax : +44 (0)116 2523555

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