Searching through two logfiles in parallel?

Victor Hooi victorhooi at
Mon Jan 7 23:10:10 CET 2013


I'm trying to compare two logfiles in Python.

One logfile will have lines recording the message being sent:

    05:00:06 Message sent - Value A: 5.6, Value B: 6.2, Value C: 9.9

the other logfile has line recording the message being received

    05:00:09 Message received - Value A: 5.6, Value B: 6.2, Value C: 9.9

The goal is to compare the time stamp between the two - we can safely assume the timestamp on the message being received is later than the timestamp on transmission.

If it was a direct line-by-line, I could probably use itertools.izip(), right?

However, it's not a direct line-by-line comparison of the two files - the lines I'm looking for are interspersed among other loglines, and the time difference between sending/receiving is quite variable.

So the idea is to iterate through the sending logfile - then iterate through the receiving logfile from that timestamp forwards, looking for the matching pair. Obviously I want to minimise the amount of back-forth through the file.

Also, there is a chance that certain messages could get lost - so I assume there's a threshold after which I want to give up searching for the matching received message, and then just try to resync to the next sent message.

Is there a Pythonic way, or some kind of idiom that I can use to approach this problem?


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