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honeybadger CircleCI

Clojars Project

A Clojure library for reporting errors to Honeybadger.


The library only has one public endpoint: notify. You can pass notify a String, or anything which inherits from Throwable (e.g. Exception):

(require '[honeybadger.core :as hb])

(def hb-config
  {:api-key "d34db33f"
   :env     "development"})

(hb/notify hb-config "Something happened")
(hb/notify hb-config (Exception. "Things ain't good"))
(hb/notify hb-config (ex-info "99 problems" {:yet "Clojure isn't one of them"}))
  • :api-key is the only required entry in the configuration map.
  • notify returns a Manifold deferred wrapping the ID (String) of the newly-created Honeybadger fault--or nil if a filter (see below) caused the data not to be sent to Honeybadger. Because a deferred is used, the call returns immediately, not blocking your (e.g., web server) thread. This comes with the typical Clojure caveats about exceptions thrown on background threads, so I strongly recommend dereferencing these calls on the main thread unless / until you have an async error handling plan in place.
  • Honeybadger fault IDs can be handy--log them, pass them to other systems, or display them to your users as incident identifiers they can send to your support team. Manifold offers ways of receiving this data asynchronously, but for a simple (synchronous) approach, simply deref the return value:
  ("kaboom") ; Strings aren't functions
  (catch Exception e
    (let [hb-id @(hb/notify hb-config e)]
      (println (str "Exception! Learn more here:\n"
                    "" hb-id)))))
;; (Output)
;; Exception! Learn more here:


The optional third parameter to notify can be used to pass all manner of additional Honeybadger metadata. The following example shows all possible metadata values:

(hb/notify hb-config
           (Exception. "Vapor Lock")
           {:tags [:serious :business]
            :component "robot-brain" ; ~= a Rails controller
            :action "think"          ; ~= a Rails action
            :context {:name "Winston"
                      :power 42
                      :grease 12}
            :request {:method :get
                      :url ""
                      :params {"robot" "true"}
                      :session {"session-id" "d34dc0d3"}}})

All metadata is optional, so pick and choose what is useful for your project. Keys and tags can be strings or keywords. :context and :request support nested values. If you're working with Ring, use the corresponding ring-honeybadger library and the :request metadata will be populated for you.


For more advanced behavior, the library allows us to provide a sequence of functions which will be invoked with all key details (viz. exception + configuration) prior to reporting to Honeybadger. These functions can be used to transform the data in arbitrary ways, or they can return nil, halting the function chain and indicating that nothing should be reported.

For maximum flexibility we can provide a custom function, but we can handle many common cases with the preexisting filters / filter combinators in honeybadger.filter:

(require '[honeybadger.core :as hb]
         '[honeybadger.filter :as hbf])

(def hb-config
  {:api-key "d34db33f"
   :env     "development"
   :filters [(hbf/only   (hbf/env? :production))
             (hbf/except (hbf/instance? ArithmeticException))
             (hbf/obscure-params [[:config :password]])]})

(hb/notify hb-config "dag, yo")

In this example, the first two filters are used to control which errors get reported to Honeybadger, and the third is used to transform the data we do send.

More precisely, the first two filter lines say only report errors in the production environment, and don't report errors of type ArithmeticException. The third filter uses the obscure-params convenience function to replace parameters at the given keypaths with a fixed string so that sensitive parameters are not sent to be stored in Honeybadger. (Of course there isn't a param at [:config :password] in this case as we haven't provided any request metadata, so the filter won't change anything here).

To make filtering both possible and convenient, all details about the error / config / metadata / etc. are bundled up in a consistent format which filters are expected to consume and produce (with the sole exception of filters which return nil to suppress reporting of an error). You can see the details of that format at honeybadger.schemas/Event, and if you use Prismatic/schema in your own project, then you can use the provided schemas to enforce correctness. One detail worth calling out is that all map keys are normalized to keywords so that filters don't have to handle variations.

Here's an example of a fully-custom filter, applying a logged-in tag to all exception reports where we have a session-id:

(defn tag-logged-in [e]
  (if (get-in e [:metadata :request :session :session-id])
    (update-in e [:metadata :tags] conj :logged-in)

Using that is as simple as adding tag-logged-in to the list of filters.

Filters that suppress certain errors can typically be written with a simple predicate function over Events which is passed to only? or except?:

(defn logged-in? [e]
  (get-in e [:metadata :request :session :session-id]))

(def hb-config
  {;; ...
   :filters [(hbf/only logged-in?)]})

Last but not least, note that the (deferred) value returned by notify allows us to ascertain whether or not a given error was reported because it will be nil iff the error reporting was filtered out. We can use this to take conditional actions:

(if-let [hb-id @(hb/notify {:api-key "d34db33f"
                            :filters [(hbf/only (constantly nil))]}
                           "chunky bacon")]
  (str "Reported error with ID " hb-id)
  "Error reporting suppressed by filter")


If you'd like to use this project with Ring, check out camdez/ring-honeybadger.


I got a lot of mileage out of weavejester's ring-honeybadger but ultimately found that it wasn't quite flexible enough to meet my needs, and its author doesn't currently have time to extend it or review PRs. I also dislike that it's bound to Ring when the underlying service is not.

Features differentiating this library from (some of) the alternatives:

  • À la carte Honeybadger reporting.
  • Ability to report (informational) non-exceptions.
  • No implicit suppression by environment or exception type.
  • No deprecation warnings.
  • Honeybadger fault IDs are returned.
  • Set of reportable objects open to extension (by protocol).
  • Supports all known (to me) Honeybadger attributes.
  • Asynchronous reporting (doesn't block the calling thread while the exception is being reported).
  • Custom filtering of reported errors.
  • Custom transformation of reported errors.
  • Helpers for common filter / transformation operations (e.g. filtering by environment / exception class, redacting of sensitive parameters).
  • Exception cause chain reported.
  • ExceptionInfo details reported.


Copyright © 2017 Cameron Desautels

Distributed under the MIT License.


A Clojure library for reporting errors to Honeybadger.







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