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Connection details

To obtain access, please send us your public key as described here.

ssh -L 5672:streamer.ghtorrent.org:5672 ghtorrent@streamer.ghtorrent.org

This will create a local port 5672 to which you can connect your AMQP client. No shell is allocated for security reasons.

Declaring queues

Our queue server, RabbitMQ implements the AMQP protocol. Some familiarity with it is necessary before using the streaming service. The RabbitMQ getting started page is a very good starting point with lots of examples in many languages.

The streaming service uses topic exchanges and concequently message-based routing (see here for details). To start receiving messages, a client needs to:

  1. connect to the server
  2. declare a queue
  3. bind the declared queue to the default exchange with routing key

The following examples are in Ruby.

Connecting to the server

Assuming your connection works as described above, you should have port 5672 listening on localhost. You should connect and define the ght-streams exchange (if you define other exchnages, you will receive no messages as there is no script posting to them).

#!/usr/bin/env ruby

require 'bunny' conn = Bunny.new(:host => '', :port => 5672, :username => 'streamer', :password => 'streamer') conn.start ch = conn.create_channel exchange = ch.topic('ght-streams', :durable => true)

Declaring a queue

You can declare as many queues as you want (within reasonable limits). To make the queue unique, we ask you to prefix your queue name with your username (e.g. gousiosg_queue). You should also make your queue non persistent, to avoid consuming server resouces when your program finishes.

q = ch.queue("gousiosg_queue", :auto_delete => true)

Binding queues to routing keys

All messages posted to ght-streams exchange have an attached routing key. This allows clients to declare queues that selectively receive only the messages they are interested into. The routing key is structured as follows:


The prefix denotes the type of the updated item

  • evt: Denotes a GitHub event, as received by GHTorrent
  • ent: Denotes an update in a MongoDB collection

The second part of the key denotes the updated item; its value depends on the prefix. The permitted values are the following:

  • For evt prefixes, it is the name of a public GitHub event shortened and lower-cased: commitcomment, create, delete, deployment, deploymentstatus, download, follow, fork, forkapply, gist, gollum, issuecomment, issues, member, membership, pagebuild, public, pullrequest, pullrequestreviewcomment, push, release, repository, status, teamadd, watch

  • For ent prefixes, it is the name of the MongoDB collection that was updated. One of: commit_comments, commits, followers, forks, geo_cache, issue_comments, issue_events, issues, org_members, pull_request_comments, pull_requests, repo_collaborators, repo_labels, repos, users, watchers

The third part of the routing key denotes the update action. The allowed values are (this only applies to ent type messages; evt type messages are only marked as insert):

  • insert: An insertion of a record to a MongoDB collection
  • delete: A deletion from a MongoDB record
  • update: An update to a MongoDB record

Let's see some example routing keys:

  • evt.repos.insert: This will retrieve all new inserts to the repos collection
  • evt.fork.*: This will retrieve all fork events
  • ent.*.update: This will retrieve all updates on MongoDB collections
  • *.*.insert: This will retrieve all new events and all MongoDB inserts

q.bind(exchange, :routing_key => "evt.fork.*")
q.subscribe do |delivery_info, metadata, payload|
  puts "#{delivery_info.routing_key}: #{payload}"

Things to consider

  • Queues are configured to be garbage collected when the client that declared them has been disconnected.
  • Messages have a pre-configured Time-To-Live equal to 1 minute. If your client is not fast enough, they will be discarded. For this reason, we recommend client-side buffering of unprocessed messages.
  • All exchanges not named ght-streams are deleted every 5 minutes.
  • All queues not prefixed with username_ are deleted every 5 minutes.