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Seacloak Software, Inc., Makers of the Traffic Report Log Analysis Tool
Reducing Traffic Report's Memory Needs

TrafficReport produces a number of sophisticated reports. Some of these reports can take a lot of memory. You may find that TrafficReport wants more memory to run a report series than you’d like to give it.

You can reduce this amount of memory by disabling the memory-intensive reports you don’t really need. (Changing the top number of items a report displays does not affect the memory used by a report.)

The following guidelines help you determine which reports are more memory-hungry than others. These are just guidelines since there’s no way to set in stone which reports use the most memory and which take the least; it depends entirely on the characteristics of your site’s activity (and not necessarily the size of your Logs).

Several reports display cool stuff about the secondary domains. These include: “Secondary Domains,” “Secondary Domains by os,” “Secondary Domains by Referrer,” and “Visits by Secondary Domain.” If you don’t need these reports, or find them to be not-so-cool :-), disable them. They can take lots of memory since there can be lots of secondary domains. The “Secondary Domains” report takes a little over 100k per 1,000 domains (for TR to not use this memory, all four of the above reports must be disabled). The Secondaries by category use less memory for each domain, but typically use much more overall since domains are tracked separately for each category. The “Secondary Domains by Referrer” takes 36k per 1,000 domains and the “Secondary Domains by os” takes 28k per 1,000 domains. It’s especially helpful to disable these two reports since if you have ten categories, and each category is tracking 1,000 domains, then this means the report is factually tracking 10,000 domains. (“Visits by Secondary Domain” takes no additional memory since it is tied to the “Secondary Domains” report.)

While we’re on the topic of domains, what about the reports based on the primary domain? These include “Primary Domains,” “Primary Domains by os,” “Primary Domains by Referrer,” and “Visits by Primary Domain.” Domain for domain, these reports require the same memory as their Secondary-based counterparts. Yet in practice, they use much less memory because there are so few primary domains compared to the possible number of secondary domains. For instance, the “Primary Domains” report might track around 100 domains (which would only take 10k). So if you like these reports, don’t be afraid to run them since their memory use is minimal.

Disabling both the “Jump within Site” & “Paths through Site” reports can be very helpful for large sites (disabling only one won’t have any effect). The more pages your site has, the more memory these reports use. Jump starting points use close to 6k per 100. Jump ending points use 2k per 100. For instance, let’s say your site has 100 pages. This would take 6k if each were a jump starting point. If the pages averaged ten links, this would be 1,000 possible jump ending points (or about 20k). So overall, this 100-page site takes 26k. Not too bad, but this example uses a small site with an average of 10 links per page. A 1,000-page site with an average of 20 links per page would take nearly 450k. If your site is quite large, then bar the door, Sally! (It will take a whole lot of memory.)

The Item reports, such as “URL” and “Agent”, use memory based on how many different items (such as URLs or Agents) are in your log. These reports take close to 24k per 1,000 items. If you have 20,000 different URLs then the “URL” report would take about 475k.

Some reports display an item by the categories you’ve set up. Like the Item reports, these take close to 24k per 1,000 items. The one that’s likely to take the most memory is the “URLs by os” report. If you have ten OScategories which average 2,500 URLs, this would be 25,000 items, or nearly 600k! The “Referrers by Agent” report may also take a lot of memory. If you have ten Agent categories which average 500 Referrers, this takes almost 120k.

The memory the “Visitor” report needs depends on how many different visitors had the good fortune of seeing your site. (This number is equal to the number of different host names that appear in your log; not to the number of visits to your site.) It takes 35k per 1,000 visitors.

In the “Referrer Stats” report, TR displays useful stuff about those domains that won’t fit into the categories you’ve set up. It uses 10k per 100 un-categorized domains. If you’d prefer to remain oblivious to these domains, think it clutters the report or just like to hoard memory, then you’ll probably enjoy eliminating them from the report. By default this report displays the top 10 un-categorized domains. Set this number to zero to disable reporting on these domains. (See the “Adjusting the Reports’ Level of Detail” section for more information.)

The “Directory” report uses about 10k for every 100 directories you have in your log. Unless you’ve really got a lot of directories, disabling this report won’t significantly affect memory use.

Reports based on site-access points (“Entry Pages,” “Exit Pages” and “Single-Page Visits”) take little memory. It uses 28k per 1,000 pages used as an entry or exit point at your site. If your site has tons of pages (five or ten thousand or more) or you are just feeling stingy or mean, then you may want to disable these reports to conserve memory. (All three reports must be disabled; disabling just one or two won’t affect memory use.)

Next: Appendix A: Log Formats

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