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API Gateway pixel tracker
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PRX Pixel Tracker

A generic pixel tracker to log impressions to kinesis (and eventually BigQuery)


This repo is deployed as an API Gateway Lambda function. Incoming requests for the /i.gif path will log information about the user to kinesis, for later processing and shipping to BigQuery by the analytics-ingest-lambda.

In order for a request to be recorded by the pixel tracker, 5 pieces of information must be present, and 3 optional:

  1. A string ?k= key query param.
  2. A string ?c= canonical-url query param.
  3. A string ?d= destination bigquery table.
  4. A valid ?s= signature for any query params on the request
  5. A non-bot user-agent header.
  6. (optional) An x-forwarded-for header. Defaults to the source-ip of the request.
  7. (optional) A referer header.
  8. (optional) A cookie header containing the _pxid key

Additionally, requests without a cookie will be redirected from /i.gif to /r.gif in an attempt to set the optional _pxid cookie.

With all those present, a record will be put to the KINESIS_STREAM env stream name, containing a json object:

  "type": "pixel",
  "destination": "dataset1.table_name_1",
  "timestamp": 1490827132999,
  "key": "any-string-here",
  "canonical": "",
  "remoteAgent": "some-user-agent",
  "remoteIp": ",",
  "remoteReferrer": "",
  "userId": "my-user-id-string"

Signing requests

An admin page is included at the /admin route to assist in signing requests. It includes a form allowing authorized users to fill in:

  1. A string key
  2. A canonical url
  3. Select a destination dataset.table, preset in the DESTINATIONS env variable

After submitting the form, the request is signed with a ?s= query param, and is now a valid pixel tracker url.

Environment variables

  • DESTINATIONS a comma separated list of dataset.table BigQuery tables to include on the admin page dropdown.
  • ID_HOST the PRX ID server used to authenticate users for access to the admin page
  • KINESIS_STREAM the destination stream for tracked pixels
  • SIGNER_SECRET a secret string used to sign pixel query parameters


To get started, first install dev dependencies with yarn. Then run yarn test. End of list!

Or to use docker, just run docker-compose build and docker-compose run test.

To run the development server (simulates API gateway at localhost:3000):

cp env-example .env
vi .env
yarn start


The source code zipfile for the lambda can be build with the yarn run build command. Just deploy that to your API gateway lambda and you're all set.


AGPL License

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