Woodpile does it with style, filters, and preferences

If you’ve used Consolation 3 to browse your log, you will I hope have discovered how valuable its styles and filters are. Those features are now included in the latest beta release of Woodpile.

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Styles are user-defined formats which determine which fields of each log entry are displayed, and in what colours their text is shown. The new unified log contains a great deal of information, and each log entry can have up to sixteen different fields of data, which include not only the date and time, but even the number of internal system ticks.

Depending on what you are looking at, only some of those fields are likely to be useful. Customising how many are displayed, and in what order, is thus valuable to anyone looking at log extracts.

Woodpile and Consolation 3 go one step further by letting you use a small range of colours, which are applied to each field. You might, for example, want the clock time to be shown in red, and the log message itself in green.

Together with styles, Woodpile’s log extracts now have a search filter. If you’re looking for log entries containing a specific keyword, there are three solutions available:

  • You can set them as a filter predicate for the log command; that is a major feature of Consolation, and is best when you know exactly what you’re looking for. It is already used internally in Woodpile, to filter log entries by process.
  • You can use the Find menu command, which works well in Woodpile’s text view, but picks the hits out of a display containing many other log entries.
  • New filters are applied to log extracts which have already been obtained, and display only those entries whose message field contains the search text. This is very quick if not instantaneous, and now available in Woodpile, as well as Consolation 3.

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You can create, edit, and remove styles, filters, and custom processes in Woodpile’s new Preferences sheet.

This new release is available here: woodpile10b2
and in Downloads above.

In the course of implementing these features, I have been patching issues with synchronisation of the text and chart views, to try to get them to be more reliable in what they display. At the moment, some features are prone to losing that synchrony. Most affected is display of full analysis for a custom process: that is most reliable and least annoying if performed in a new window, and synchrony can be lost if you have previously done a lot of things with that window before enabling Full analysis.

I will next be working to ensure proper synchrony in the text and chart views, and starting to look at implementing printing for the chart view.