Guide to Logging in Node.js

Posted By : Vignesh R | 22-Jul-2019

Logging is one of the important pieces of the software life cycle which can be taken for granted. With the good logging methodology followed can be helpful in debugging, without which it can consume hours and hours, even days of effort just to point out the cause.

Node.js generates text logs like any other application. For small scale application, the logs generated by Node itself can be enough, But for large scale application, it may not be of any use. Since these kinds of applications generate a massive amount of logs which could be reckless to track down. In this, we will go through some steps to generate a logging system for those kinds of applications.



       1. Node.js V6.0 or above (To install Node.js in your machine follow steps on

           2. Express.js (To install express in your project follow steps on


Express.js Limitations 


Express.js is a very simple framework that makes our life easy. The way of achieving this has been eliminating the maximum number of operations, having only necessary for its operation.  

In other API application frameworks(other than JavaScript), has a unique request identifier for almost all the request to the server. As in any point in time, the program can print a log, which can target unambiguously identifying the request. This can be useful in many ways such as, Tracking down the request and bugs and also to run statistics of request success and error situations.

The ability to identify the request to which a log belongs is a very important feature. So Express needs to solve this problem.

Passing request object throughout the code could not be a suitable solution for two main reasons,

         1. Passing an extra parameter would make the code dirty. 

         2. The API module would be joined to the rest of the modules, which is an excessively tedious task.  


express-logger-unique-request-id Module


This is a library that will do all the work for Us. As it uses Winston behind the hood, Even the earlier configuration could work for the same, or the new configuration can be passed to it. In each line of the log, you will add the req id in a unique way when a request arrives in the Express.

Setting up is very simple. Add the express-logger-unique-req-id in your project.

               npm install express-logger-unique-req-id --save

Below is the simple example of the logger object.


var express= require('express’);
var app = express();

var express_logger = require(‘./express-logger-unique-req-id’);

let logger = express_logger.getLogger();

logger.debug(‘First message’);




With this simple example, we already have a logger object that we can use to print the unique req id at any point of time over a request.



About Author

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Vignesh R

Vignesh is a MEAN Stack Developer. He has good skills in JS, Python, HTML, CSS, MongoDB, Angular, Node.js, C++ etc .

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