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Sep 14

Application Monitoring with AspectJ, JMX, and GlassBox

AOP, Tech Add comments

Ron Bodkin has written about Performance monitoring with AspectJ: A look inside the Glassbox Inspector with AspectJ and JMX, which is part of the AOP@Work series.

Say goodbye to scattered and tangled monitoring code, as Ron Bodkin shows you how to combine AspectJ and JMX for a flexible, modular approach to performance monitoring. In this first of two parts, Ron uses source code and ideas from the Glassbox Inspector open source project to help you build a monitoring system that provides correlated information to identify specific problems, but with low enough overhead to be used in production environments.

The article gets into some serious code, and discusses:

  • An aspect for capturing time and counts of servlets
  • Managing overhead
  • Thread safety
  • Exposing performance data
  • Exposing beans for JMX management
  • Database request monitoring
  • Servlet request tracking
  • JDBC monitoring
  • Tracking JDBC information

Not only is this a great example of seeing *real* AOP at work, but it also let’s us see the work being done in Glassbox, which wil hopefully end up with us being able to find problems in our software a LOT faster!


4 Responses to “Application Monitoring with AspectJ, JMX, and GlassBox”

  1. Binil Thomas Says:


    Please see InfraRED ( for a similar tool.


  2. William Louth Says:

    Hi Dion,

    I would really like to hear how you view the difference in GlassBox and other performance management tools that provide much more contextual information including execution patterns today with powerful visualizations. I am sure that most professional performance engineers would love all performance problems to be as simple to identify with a simplistic UI as the JMX console. The reality is different. It would be great if the Java community started looking at solutions with real innovation at the user level and not just playing with new technology.

    If you are really interested in performance management solutions and not just the application of AOP then you should check out our Insight articles on:

    As soon as the commercial offering behind this product is made available we can do a side by side comparison of a real world application problem.


    William Louth
    JXInsight Product Architecture

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