These guidelines are meant to encourage consistency and best practices among people working on DistributedLog code base. They should be observed unless there is compelling reason to ignore them.



DistributedLog code should follow the Sun Java Coding Convention, with the following additions.

  • Lines can be up to 120 characters long.
  • Indentation should be 4 spaces. Tabs should never be used.
  • Use curly braces even for single-line ifs and elses.
  • No @author tags in any javadoc


  • Logging should be taken seriously. Please take the time to access the logs when making a change to ensure that the important things are getting logged and there is no junk there.
  • Logging statements should be complete sentences with proper capitalization that are written to be read by a person not necessarily familiar with the source code.
  • All loggings should be done with SLF4j, never System.out or System.err.
  • Logging levels:
    • INFO is the level you should assume the software will be run in. INFo messages are things which are not bad but which the user will definitely want to know about every time they occur.
    • TRACE and DEBUG are both things you turn on when something is wrong and you want to figure out what is going on. DEBUG should not be so fine grained that it will seriously affect performance of the program. TRACE can be anything. Both DEBUG and TRACE statements should be considered to be wrapped in an if (logger.isDebugEnabled) or if (logger.isTraceEnabled) check to avoid performance degradation.
    • WARN and ERROR indicate something that is BAD. Use WARN if you aren't totally sure it is bad, and ERROR if you are.


  • DistributedLog uses a pluggable StatsProvider on exporting metrics
  • Any new features should come with appropriate metrics for monitoring the feature is working correctly.
  • Those metrics should be taken seriously and only export useful metrics that would be used on production on monitoring/alerting healthy of the system, or troubleshooting problems.

Unit Tests

  • New changes should come with unit tests that verify the functionality being added
  • Unit tests should test the least amount of code possible. Don't start the whole server unless there is no other way to test a single class or small group of classes in isolation.
  • Tests should not depend on any external resources. They need to setup and teardown their own stuff.
  • It is okay to use the filesystem and network in tests since that's our business but you need to clean up them after yourself.
  • Do not use sleep or other timing assumptions in tests. It is always, always, wrong and will fail intermittently on any test server with other things going on that causes delays.


  • Names should be thought through from the point of view of the person using the config.
  • DistributedLog uses CamelCase naming convention on naming configuration settings.
  • The default values should be thought as best value for people who runs the program without tuning parameters.
  • All configuration settings should be added to default configuration file and documented.


  • DistributedLog is a purely asynchronous program. It is latency sensitive. All synchronization and locking should be in a fine granularity way.
  • All threads should have proper meaningful name.

Backwards Compatibility

  • Wire protocol should support backwards compatibility to enable no-downtime upgrades. This means the servers (e.g bookies or write proxies) MUST be able to support requests from both old and new clients simultaneously.
  • Metadata formats and data formats should support backwards compatibility.








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