Logging and Error Handling

SilverStripe uses Monolog for both error handling and logging. It comes with two default configurations: one for logging, and another for core error handling. The core error handling implementation also comes with two default configurations: one for development environments, and another for test or live environments. On development environments, SilverStripe will deal harshly with any warnings or errors: a full call-stack is shown and execution stops for anything, giving you early warning of a potential issue to handle.

Raising errors and logging diagnostic information.

For general purpose logging, you can use the Logger directly. The Logger is a PSR-3 compatible LoggerInterface and can be accessed via the Injector:

use SilverStripe\Core\Injector\Injector;
use Psr\Log\LoggerInterface;
use SilverStripe\Security\Security;

Injector::inst()->get(LoggerInterface::class)->info('User has logged in: ID #' . Security::getCurrentUser()->ID);
Injector::inst()->get(LoggerInterface::class)->debug('Query executed: ' . $sql);
Injector::inst()->get(LoggerInterface::class)->error('Something went wrong, but let\'s continue on...');

Although you can raise more important levels of alerts in this way, we recommend using PHP's native error systems for these instead.

For notice-level and warning-level issues, you can also use user_error to throw errors where appropriate. As with the default Logger implementation these will not halt execution, but will send a message to the PHP error log.

public function delete()
{
    if ($this->alreadyDelete) {
        user_error("Delete called on already deleted object", E_USER_NOTICE);
        return;
    }
    // ...
}
    
public function getRelatedObject()
{
    if (!$this->RelatedObjectID) {
        user_error("Can't find a related object", E_USER_WARNING);
        return;
    }
    // ...
}

For errors that should halt execution, you should use Exceptions. Normally, Exceptions will halt the flow of execution, but they can be caught with a try/catch clause.

throw new \LogicException("Query failed: " . $sql);

Accessing the logger via dependency injection

It can be quite verbose to call Injector::inst()->get(LoggerInterface::class) all the time. More importantly, it also means that you're coupling your code to global state, which is a bad design practise. A better approach is to use dependency injection to pass the logger in for you. The Injector can help with this. The most straightforward is to specify a dependencies config setting, like this:

use Psr\Log\LoggerInterface;
use SilverStripe\Control\Controller;

class MyController extends Controller
{
    private static $dependencies = [
        'Logger' => '%$' . LoggerInterface::class,
    ];

    /**
     * This will be set automatically, as long as MyController is instantiated via Injector
     *
     * @var LoggerInterface
     */
    protected $logger;

    protected function init()
    {
        $this->logger->debug("MyController::init() called");
        parent::init();
    }
    
    /**
     * @param LoggerInterface $logger
     * @return $this
     */
    public function setLogger(LoggerInterface $logger)
    {
        $this->logger = $logger;
        return $this;
    }
}

In other contexts, such as testing or batch processing, logger can be set to a different value by the code calling MyController.

Error Levels

  • EUSERWARNING: Err on the side of over-reporting warnings. Throwing warnings provides a means of ensuring that developers know:

    • Deprecated functions / usage patterns
    • Strange data formats
    • Things that will prevent an internal function from continuing. Throw a warning and return null.
  • EUSERERROR: Throwing one of these errors is going to take down the production site. So you should only throw EUSERERROR if it's going to be dangerous or impossible to continue with the request.

Configuring error logging

You can configure your logging using Monolog handlers. The handlers should be provided in the Logger.handlers configuration setting. Below we have a couple of common examples, but Monolog comes with many different handlers for you to try.

Sending emails

To send emails, you can use Monolog's NativeMailerHandler, like this:

SilverStripe\Core\Injector\Injector:
  Psr\Log\LoggerInterface: 
    calls:
      MailHandler: [ pushHandler, [ '%$MailHandler' ] ]
  MailHandler:
      class: Monolog\Handler\NativeMailerHandler
      constructor:
        - me@example.com
        - There was an error on your test site
        - me@example.com
        - error
      properties:
        ContentType: text/html
        Formatter: %$SilverStripe\Logging\DetailedErrorFormatter

The first section 4 lines passes a new handler to Logger::pushHandler() from the named service MailHandler. The next 10 lines define what the service is.

The calls key, MailHandler, can be anything you like: its main purpose is to let other configuration disable it (see below).

Logging to a file

To log to a file, you can use Monolog's StreamHandler, like this:

SilverStripe\Core\Injector\Injector:
  Psr\Log\LoggerInterface: 
    calls:
      LogFileHandler: [ pushHandler, [ '%$LogFileHandler' ] ]
  LogFileHandler:
    class: Monolog\Handler\StreamHandler
    constructor:
      - "../silverstripe.log"
      - "info"

The log file will be relative to the main index.php file path (default: inside public/), so "../silverstripe.log" will create a file in your project root.

The info argument provides the minimum level to start logging at.

Disabling the default handler

You can disable a handler by removing its pushHandlers call from the calls option of the Logger service definition. The handler key of the default handler is pushDisplayErrorHandler, so you can disable it like this:

SilverStripe\Core\Injector\Injector:
  Psr\Log\LoggerInterface.errorhandler:
    calls:
      pushDisplayErrorHandler:  %%remove%%

Setting a different configuration for dev

In order to set different logging configuration on different environment types, we rely on the environment-specific configuration features that the config system providers. For example, here we have different configuration for dev and non-dev.

---
Name: dev-errors
Only:
  environment: dev
---
SilverStripe\Core\Injector\Injector:
  Psr\Log\LoggerInterface.errorhandler:
    calls:
      pushMyDisplayErrorHandler: [ pushHandler, [ '%$DisplayErrorHandler' ]]
  DisplayErrorHandler:
    class: SilverStripe\Logging\HTTPOutputHandler
    constructor:
      - "notice"
    properties:
      Formatter: %$SilverStripe\Logging\DetailedErrorFormatter
      CLIFormatter: %$SilverStripe\Logging\DetailedErrorFormatter
---
Name: live-errors
Except:
  environment: dev
---
SilverStripe\Core\Injector\Injector:
  # Default logger implementation for general purpose use
  Psr\Log\LoggerInterface:
    calls:
      # Save system logs to file
      pushFileLogHandler: [ pushHandler, [ '%$LogFileHandler' ]]
  
  # Core error handler for system use
  Psr\Log\LoggerInterface.errorhandler:
    calls:
      # Save errors to file
      pushFileLogHandler: [ pushHandler, [ '%$LogFileHandler' ]]
      # Format and display errors in the browser/CLI 
      pushMyDisplayErrorHandler: [ pushHandler, [ '%$DisplayErrorHandler' ]]
  
  # Custom handler to log to a file
  LogFileHandler:
    class: Monolog\Handler\StreamHandler
    constructor:
      - "../silverstripe.log"
      - "notice"
    properties:
      Formatter: %$Monolog\Formatter\HtmlFormatter
      ContentType: text/html
  
  # Handler for displaying errors in the browser or CLI
  DisplayErrorHandler:
    class: SilverStripe\Logging\HTTPOutputHandler
    constructor:
      - "error"
    properties:
      Formatter: %$SilverStripe\Logging\DebugViewFriendlyErrorFormatter
     
  # Configuration for the "friendly" error formatter
  SilverStripe\Logging\DebugViewFriendlyErrorFormatter:
    class: SilverStripe\Logging\DebugViewFriendlyErrorFormatter
    properties:
      Title: "There has been an error"
      Body: "The website server has not been able to respond to your request"
In addition to SilverStripe-integrated logging, it is advisable to fall back to PHP's native logging functionality. A script might terminate before it reaches the SilverStripe error handling, for example in the case of a fatal error. Make sure log_errors and error_log in your PHP ini file are configured.

Replacing default implementations

For most application, Monolog and its default error handler should be fine, as you can get a lot of flexibility simply by changing that handlers that are used. However, some situations will call for replacing the default components with others.

Replacing the logger

Monolog comes by default with SilverStripe, but you may use another PSR-3 compliant logger, if you wish. To do this, set the SilverStripe\Core\Injector\Injector.Monolog\Logger configuration parameter, providing a new injector definition. For example:

SilverStripe\Core\Injector\Injector:
  SilverStripe\Logging\ErrorHandler:
    class: Logging\Logger
    constructor:
     - 'alternative-logger'

If you do this, you will need to supply your own handlers, and the Logger.handlers configuration parameter will be ignored.

Replacing the error handler

The Injector service SilverStripe\Logging\ErrorHandler is responsible for initialising the error handler. By default it:

  • Create a SilverStripe\Logging\MonologErrorHandler object.
  • Attach the registered service Psr\Log\LoggerInterface to it, to start the error handler.

Core.php will call start() on this method, to start the error handler.

This error handler is flexible enough to work with any PSR-3 logging implementation, but sometimes you will want to use another. To replace this, you should registered a new service, ErrorHandlerLoader. For example:

SilverStripe\Core\Injector\Injector:
  SilverStripe\Logging\ErrorHandler: 
    class: MyApp\CustomErrorHandlerLoader

You should register something with a start() method.

Differences from SilverStripe 3

In SilverStripe 3, logging was based on the Zend Log module. Customisations were added using SS_Log::add_writer(). This function no longer works, and any Zend Log writers will need to be replaced with Monolog handlers. Fortunately, a range of handlers are available, both in the core package and in add-ons. See the Monolog documentation for more information.

Related Lessons