Thursday, July 19, 2012

Xray again

I am having so much fun developing a system from scratch that it is hard to take time away for writing blogs. However, they say I need to do this otherwise I'd be forgotten ... Anyway the reason for this blog is XRay. XRay is a plugin for the Apache Webconsole that provides you with a quick overview of the health of your system. Since I first wrote about it I've added some features because I am using it all the time, this is the best OSGi tool I've ever made. I have the XRay window on my screen all the time. When I make changes in bndtools I see the screen move on my laptop screen in the corner of my eye. When things go wrong, the colors change and you know you have to take a deeper look. It is kind of amazing how much the inner bowels of the framework are alive. The tools has spent me countless hours because the number of wild goose chases are far fewer.

One of the major new features is that it now shows when a bundle is not refreshed. For some reason, one of my bundles sometimes escapes the refresh cycle after a bundle is updated (still have to figure out why). This caused that some services were not wired up (showing up as white services, dashed when requested but not found, see picture) which should have been connected.

When I figured out this was caused by the refresh, I just created a red dotted border around the bundle. Now the symptom is highly visible. Those poor lazily activated Eclipse bundles that are in the starting state (now, that was a bad idea ...) are now also color coded with a slightly lighter touch of orange.

The Javascript libs are now included so it can be used in environments where there is no internet. If you use service based programming, check it out! It saves an amazing amount of time.

Some people reported layout problems because they had hundreds of bundles and few services. Though I do not have a lot of time for this, I improved the layout algorithm. Still could use some improvements.  The window also became bigger and better scrollable. It probably still won't work for hundreds of bundles but I am having about 30 bundles and it works surprisingly well.

You can download the bundle from

Ok, back to development!

Peter Kriens