Tuesday, April 21st, 2009

Common HTTP Tracing Export Format

Category: Performance, Utility

There are many tools that can track HTTP at various levels, but they each have their own format. What if we lived in a world where there was a common format which would enable the following:

Steve Souders: “Hey Dion, Facebook is doing something wacky on their category pages. Take a look at the waterfall that you see in this data that I exported from AOL PageTest”

Dion Almaer: “Interesting. I just imported it into Firebug, and I see what you mean.”

Well, Jan Odvarko of the Firebug team is working on just that:

There is currently several existing tools that can be used for HTTP tracking. To name a few:

They have various advantages over each other. For example, in-browser tools can easily group requests by page and analyze browser-cache usage while network-level tools can easily gather low level detailed info (e.g. HTTP compression). But in general, they all can be used to track HTTP traffic.

It would be obviously very beneficial to have a common export/import format that is used across all HTTP tracing tools and perhaps other projects. This would allow effective processing and analyzing data coming from various sources.

I have put together a document (fist draft) that represents a proposal for HTTP Trace Data export/import format (based on HTTPWatch’s structure, but designed for JSON). Any comments and suggestions are greatly appreciated!

I hope this happens.

Posted by Dion Almaer at 5:39 am

4 rating from 18 votes


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“I hope this happens.”

Make it happen Dion ;)

Comment by V1 — April 21, 2009

I second that, but I wonder, what’s wrong with pcap?

Comment by reconbot — April 21, 2009

“What if we lived in a world where”

But can we afford the “in a world” guy to do the voice-over?

Comment by Joeri — April 21, 2009

Don’t forget HttpFox! It’s the inbrowser equivalent of Wireshark. If you’re only doing web sniffing, then you don’t need all of the power of Wireshark, so you can just install HttpFox, which gives you much more information the Firebug net panel.

Comment by dmayle — April 21, 2009

@Joeri, I think the “in a world” guy is actually dead, so we’re good there :p

This is a great concept, hope to see it in real world usage soon.

Comment by starkraving — April 21, 2009

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