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Gem 1.3: Giving Sinatra some love

Tom de Bruijn on

Hello there appsignal gem user!

We just released gem version 1.3 which improves our support for Sinatra and adds some awesome new gem features.

Sinatra use case improvements

Sinatra is a great framework which is very flexible in the many ways people can use it. Therefore supporting Sinatra for every use case out there is something we continue to work on. This 1.3 gem update update covers even more cases for Sinatra.

Modular app namespacing

When using modular apps you might have missed a mount path in the URIs inside the AppSignal event tree. Routes like /api/accounts would instead be shown as /accounts, missing the mount path. You can now see the whole path of the requests.

Modular app configuration

If you use Sinatra::Base or Sinatra::Application subclasses for your applications AppSignal will now load correctly by default. The Appsignal::Rack::SinatraInstrumentation middleware now gets included automatically, so you don’t have to anymore.

Before, you installed appsignal into your Sinatra app like this:

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# Pre 1.3.0
require 'sinatra'
require 'appsignal/integrations/sinatra'
class MyApp < Sinatra::Base
  use Appsignal::Rack::SinatraInstrumentation
end

Since version 1.3.0, you can drop the explicit use in your application class:

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# Since 1.3.0
require 'sinatra' # 'sinatra/base' works too
require 'appsignal/integrations/sinatra'
class MyApp < Sinatra::Base
end

If you use Sinatra, please check out the documentation page to read how we support Sinatra after these updates.

New features

AppSignal powered parameter filtering

The appsignal gem can now filter parameters everywhere, instead of only in Rails applications.

Inside Rails applications we continue to rely on Rails’ built-in parameter filtering to filter out things like passwords on sign-in requests.

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# config/application.rb
# or in config/initializers/filter_parameter_logging.rb (Rails 4+)
class Application < Rails::Application
  config.filter_parameters += [:password, :password_confirmation, :card_number, :card_cvc]
end

For non-Rails applications you can now use AppSignal’s own parameter filtering to do the same.

You can filter request parameters using a blocklist so you don’t accidentally send all your users’ passwords to our servers.

Start using it in gem version 1.3 by adding the following to your config file:

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# config/appsignal.yml
production:
  filter_parameters:
    - password
    - confirm_password

Or use an environment variable instead:

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export APPSIGNAL_FILTER_PARAMETERS="password,confirm_password"

Hostname config option

Set your application’s hostname with the hostname config. Useful for when you run on servers with randomly generated hostnames.

Take back control of your hostnames as they appear in AppSignal by setting them to something more descriptive with this config setting.

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# config/appsignal.yml
production:
  hostname: frontend1

Alternatively, you can set a hostname with the APPSIGNAL_HOSTNAME environment variable per machine, if you run multiple machines.

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export APPSIGNAL_HOSTNAME="worker42"

Instrumentation for Ruby methods

We’ve added a new way to instrument your code. Using the new Method integration you can now track the performance of methods directly. This allows for better insights of individual methods in your application, so you can more easily identify which parts are not performing well.

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require 'appsignal/integrations/object'
class Foo
  def bar
    1
  end
  appsignal_instrument_method :bar

  def self.baz
    sleep 10
    2
  end
  appsignal_instrument_class_method :baz
end

Foo.new.bar
# => 1
Foo.baz
# => 2

Read more about it on the documentation site.

Webmachine and DataMapper

We support Webmachine and DataMapper now! DataMapper works straight out of the box. For Webmachine you will need some manual configuration.

Host metrics on by default

Introduced in Gem 1.2, host metrics are now on by default.

Furthermore this release includes some other additions and refactorings of internals, too much to list here. See the change log for details. Get in touch with us if you run into problems after upgrading.

Enjoy!

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