If you’re a .NET developer, you know that a lot of what happens with web development can seem like black magic. Much of the grittiness involved with today’s complicated web services is masked from your control to make things easier on you and allow you to program faster. The side effect to this is that some aspects of debugging - particularly performance tracing - can be made more difficult.
Glimpse, a Heads-Up Display for .NET development, aims to change that. Glimpse is a mini-dashboard that retrieves the most important details about a request and displays it at the bottom of your page in a modern and intuitive way.
Once the httpModule is enabled, every page you visit while debugging locally will report back with detailed stats about the client request, the server response building, and any ajax requests that are made.
Each of those categories is a clickable element which expands to show additional detail about the page request you just performed. Using this data you can gain valuable insight into which actions are resulting in performance bottlenecks saving you significant time and effort.
You also get another tool with this package called Glimpse Wider. Clicking on the G icon in the lower right of the tool will open up a full width inspector filled with useful data. You can use this console to identify what libraries are being loaded to support your app, inspect additional request details, and much more. My favorite is the Routes inspector which shows you the logic chain which resulted in a successful route match in MVC. This can be a lifesaver for applications with complicated routing rules.
Glimpse is easily installed as a NuGet package, of which many are available to suit the most common project types:
- Glimpse ASP.NET
- Glimpse MVC2
- Glimpse MVC3
- Glimpse MVC4
- Glimpse ADO
- Glimpse EF 4.3
- Glimpse EF 5
- Glimpse EF 6
To see the open source tool in action, check out the video below.