rotor provides a cross platform R reimagination of logrotate. It is a companion package to the logging package lgr. In contrast to logrotate, rotor relies solely on information encoded in a suffixes of file names for conditionally creating backups (i.e. a timestamp or index). It therefore also works with backups created by other tools, as long as the filename has a format that rotor can understand.

rotate(), rotate_date(), and rotate_time() move a file and insert a suffix (either an integer or a timestamp) into the filename. In addition, they create an empty file in place of the original one. This is useful for log rotation. backup(), backup_date() and backup_time() do the same but keep the original file.

rotor also includes utility functions for finding and examining the backups of a file: list_backups(), backup_info(), n_backups, newest_backup(), oldest_backup(). See the function reference for details.

## Installation

You can install the released version of rotor from CRAN with:

install.packages("rotor")

And the development version from GitHub with:

# install.packages("remotes")
remotes::install_github("s-fleck/rotor")

## Example

First we create a temporary directory for the files created by the code examples

library(rotor)

# create a directory
td <- file.path(tempdir(), "rotor")
dir.create(td, recursive = TRUE)

# create an example logfile
tf <- file.path(td, "mylogfile.log")
writeLines("An important message", tf)

### Indexed backups

backup() makes a copy of a file and inserts an index between the filename and the file extension. The file with the index 1 is always the most recently made backup.

backup(tf)

# backup and rotate also support compression
backup(tf, compression = TRUE)

# display backups of a file
list_backups(tf)
#> [1] "/tmp/RtmpRZc2Qd/rotor/mylogfile.1.log.zip"
#> [2] "/tmp/RtmpRZc2Qd/rotor/mylogfile.2.log"

rotate() also backs up a file, but replaces the original file with an empty one.

rotate(tf)
list_backups(tf)
#> [1] "/tmp/RtmpRZc2Qd/rotor/mylogfile.1.log"
#> [2] "/tmp/RtmpRZc2Qd/rotor/mylogfile.2.log.zip"
#> [3] "/tmp/RtmpRZc2Qd/rotor/mylogfile.3.log"

# the original file is now empty
#> character(0)

# its content was moved to the first backup
#> [1] "An important message"

# we can now safely write to the original file
writeLines("another important message", tf)

The max_backups parameter limits the maximum number of backups rotor will keep of a file. Notice how the zipped backup we created above moves to index 4 as we create two new backups.

backup(tf, max_backups = 4)
backup(tf, max_backups = 4)

list_backups(tf)
#> [1] "/tmp/RtmpRZc2Qd/rotor/mylogfile.1.log"
#> [2] "/tmp/RtmpRZc2Qd/rotor/mylogfile.2.log"
#> [3] "/tmp/RtmpRZc2Qd/rotor/mylogfile.3.log"
#> [4] "/tmp/RtmpRZc2Qd/rotor/mylogfile.4.log.zip"

We can also use prune_backups() to delete old backups. Other than ensuring that no new backups is created, it works identically to using backup() with the max_backups parameter. By setting it to 0, we delete all backups.

prune_backups(tf, max_backups = 0)

## Timestamped backups

rotor can also create timestamped backups. backup_date() creates uses a Date (yyyy-mm-dd) timestamp, backup_time() uses a full datetime-stamp by default (yyyy-mm-dd--hh-mm-ss). The format of the timestamp can be modified with a subset of the formatting tokens understood by strftime() (within certain restrictions). Backups created with both functions are compatible with each other (but not with those created with backup_index()).

# be default backup_date() only makes a backup if the last backups is younger
# than 1 day, so we set age to -1 for this example
backup_date(tf, age = -1)
backup_date(tf, format = "%Y-%m", age = -1)
backup_time(tf)
backup_time(tf, format = "%Y-%m-%d_%H-%M-%S")  # Python logging
backup_time(tf, format = "%Y%m%dT%H%M%S")  # ISO 8601 compatible

backup_info(tf)
#>                                                       path      name
#> 1  /tmp/RtmpRZc2Qd/rotor/mylogfile.2020-12-11_20-23-35.log mylogfile
#> 2 /tmp/RtmpRZc2Qd/rotor/mylogfile.2020-12-11--20-23-35.log mylogfile
#> 5      /tmp/RtmpRZc2Qd/rotor/mylogfile.20201211T202335.log mylogfile
#> 3           /tmp/RtmpRZc2Qd/rotor/mylogfile.2020-12-11.log mylogfile
#> 4              /tmp/RtmpRZc2Qd/rotor/mylogfile.2020-12.log mylogfile
#>                    sfx ext size isdir mode               mtime
#> 1  2020-12-11_20-23-35 log   26 FALSE  664 2020-12-11 20:23:35
#> 2 2020-12-11--20-23-35 log   26 FALSE  664 2020-12-11 20:23:35
#> 5      20201211T202335 log   26 FALSE  664 2020-12-11 20:23:35
#> 3           2020-12-11 log   26 FALSE  664 2020-12-11 20:23:35
#> 4              2020-12 log   26 FALSE  664 2020-12-11 20:23:35
#>                 ctime               atime  uid  gid uname grname
#> 1 2020-12-11 20:23:35 2020-12-11 20:23:35 1000 1000 hoelk  hoelk
#> 2 2020-12-11 20:23:35 2020-12-11 20:23:35 1000 1000 hoelk  hoelk
#> 5 2020-12-11 20:23:35 2020-12-11 20:23:35 1000 1000 hoelk  hoelk
#> 3 2020-12-11 20:23:35 2020-12-11 20:23:35 1000 1000 hoelk  hoelk
#> 4 2020-12-11 20:23:35 2020-12-11 20:23:35 1000 1000 hoelk  hoelk
#>             timestamp
#> 1 2020-12-11 20:23:35
#> 2 2020-12-11 20:23:35
#> 5 2020-12-11 20:23:35
#> 3 2020-12-11 00:00:00
#> 4 2020-12-01 00:00:00

If we examine the “timestamp” column in the example above, we see that missing date information is always interpreted as the start of the period; i.e. so "2019-01" is equivalent to "2019-01-01--00--00--00" for all intents and purposes.

prune_backups(tf, max_backups = 0)  # cleanup
list_backups(tf)
#> character(0)

Besides passing a total number of backups to keep, max_backups can also be a period or a date / datetime for timestamped backups.

# keep all backups younger than one year
prune_backups(tf, "1 year")

# keep all backups from April 4th, 2018 and onwards
prune_backups(tf, "2018-04-01")  

## Cache

rotor also provides a simple on-disk key-value store that can be pruned by size, age or number of files.

cache <- Cache$new(file.path(tempdir(), "cache-test"), hashfun = digest::digest) #> creating directory '/tmp/RtmpRZc2Qd/cache-test' key1 <- cache$push(iris)
key2 <- cache$push(cars) key3 <- cache$push(mtcars)

cache$files$path
#> [1] "/tmp/RtmpRZc2Qd/cache-test/d3c5d071001b61a9f6131d3004fd0988"
#> [2] "/tmp/RtmpRZc2Qd/cache-test/f98a59010652c8e1ee062ed4c43f648e"
#> [3] "/tmp/RtmpRZc2Qd/cache-test/a63c70e73b58d0823ab3bcbd3b543d6f"

head(cache$read(key1)) #> Sepal.Length Sepal.Width Petal.Length Petal.Width Species #> 1 5.1 3.5 1.4 0.2 setosa #> 2 4.9 3.0 1.4 0.2 setosa #> 3 4.7 3.2 1.3 0.2 setosa #> 4 4.6 3.1 1.5 0.2 setosa #> 5 5.0 3.6 1.4 0.2 setosa #> 6 5.4 3.9 1.7 0.4 setosa cache$prune(max_files = 1)
cache$files$path
#> [1] "/tmp/RtmpRZc2Qd/cache-test/a63c70e73b58d0823ab3bcbd3b543d6f"
cache$purge() # deletes all cached files cache$destroy()  # deletes the cache directory

# Dependencies

rotor’s dependencies are intentionally kept slim. It only comes with two non-base dependencies:

• R6: A light weight system for encapsulated object-oriented programming.
• dint: A toolkit for working year-quarter and year-month dates that I am also the author of. It is used by rotate_date() and rotate_time() to deal with calendar periods (such as weeks or months).

Both packages have no transitive dependencies (i.e they do not depend on anything outside of base R)

Optional dependencies:

• digest,
ulid, or uuid for generating hashes or UIDs when using Cache. Storage keys for cache files can also be set manually, in which case no external dependencies are required.
• zip is supported as an alternative to the integrated zip function in R. Might work better on some systems and worse on others.
• crayon for terminal colors