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Frequently asked Questions

1. General

Q: What is the difference between Membrane Monitor and Membrane ESB?
A: The Monitor adds a graphical user interface on top of the ESB. So you can debug and test with the Monitor. Once you have a working configuration, you can load it into the ESB. Because the ESB comes without a rich GUI it is much faster and can be deployed almost everywhere. For administration and monitoring the ESB provides a simple Web console.

Q: We are behind a firewall. We need to access a proxy server to access the Web. Does Membrane support an HTTP proxy?
A: Yes. You can specify an HTTP proxy in the preferences dialog. Click on the Window Preferences Menu. You will find the Proxy Preferences when you expand the Membrane Monitor tab.

Q: How is Membrane different to Apache TCPMon?
A: The Apache TCPMon is a nice tool with a very small footprint. The size of the executable jar file is only a few kilobytes. TCPMon uses Swing as user interface and can be executed on any platform that supports Java. The footprint of Membrane Monitor is a little bit bigger and it uses the Rich Client Platform from the Eclipse project.
TCPMon can monitor any TCP Socket connection. Membrane is a specialized tool that can only monitor HTTP and SOAP connections. The reason for this limitation is that Membrane Monitor knows something about HTTP and SOAP. So for instance, Membrane allows you to intercept a message and then to change the SOAP request. Before sending the request to its destination, Membrane Monitor can adjust the Content-Length HTTP header to match the length of the modified message.

2. Support

Q: Where can I get help?
A: You can browse the mailing list. Or you can post questions and feedback to the list. A subscription is not needed in order to post.

Q: Can I get professional Support?
A: Yes. Have a look at our support offerings.

3. Monitor

Q: Can I execute the Monitor on Linux or Mac OS?
A:Yes. We provide Linux and Mac versions. However, you can build Membrane Monitor from source at any time.

Q: Can I monitor HTTP connections?
A: Yes. Besides SOAP you can use Membrane Monitor also for other HTTP connections. You can learn more about HTTP Monitoring in a short tutorial.

Q: Can I use Membrane Monitor without the GUI?
A: Yes. If you do not need the graphical user interface you can use the Membrane ESB. It is just the plain Router without the GUI. It can be started from command line or deployed as Windows or Linux Service.

4. Troubleshooting

Q: The Router keeps crashing after consuming all available memory. Is this a bug?
A: Membrane Router cannot detect circular requests. The Router calling itself over and over again floods the memory with requests that cannot be completed. Make sure that no rule accidentally calls itself.

Q: I've tried to start Membrane but got an error dialog about missing a library, what's wrong with it?
A: If you see the following error dialog after start up of the application

DLL Error Dialog

Figure1: Eclipse Error Dialog

than, make shure that you grant executable permissions to eclipse_xxxx.dll file located in
/plugin/rg.eclipse.equinox.launcher.win32.win32.x86_1.1.0.vxxxx
directory. On Windows you can fix it with the following steps:

Permissions Popup Dialog

Figure2: Eclipse Error Dialog

Sorry for the German screen-shot, it will be nice if someone could provide us an English one.


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