Java agent release notes

Java agent release notes

Monday, December 21, 2015 - 10:00 Download


  • Fixed an issue that caused Play 2.x requests to produce empty responses when the circuit breaker is tripped.
Tuesday, December 15, 2015 - 12:19 Download


  • MongoDB

    The Java agent now reports synchronous calls to the Mongo Java Driver 2.12 through 3.1. You will see the Mongo operations in breakdowns in the Applications Overview chart, entries in the Databases tab, and segments in transaction traces. Note: The asynchronous driver is not supported.

  • Akka HTTP and Spray

    The Java agent now reports and names transactions received through Akka HTTP 1.0, Akka HTTP 2.0 and Spray. Transactions are named intuitively based on route DSLs. This instrumentation also supports Cross Application Tracing from calling systems. With our previously released support for Akka, your Akka HTTP and Spray applications will now include activity of those transactions all the way through your actor systems.


  • In rare cases the Java agent's EJB instrumentation could cause a StackOverflowException to appear in application logs.
  • In some cases the Java agent's Netty instrumentation could throw a NullPointerException to application code.
  • Improve performance when using Cross Application Tracing and a large number of threads.
  • In some cases the transaction would not be reported when using Akka with mutable messages.

Known Issues:

  • Play 2.x requests will produce empty responses when the circuit breaker is tripped. We recommend Play 2.x users disable the circuit breaker when using Java agent versions 3.22 or higher.
Tuesday, December 1, 2015 - 11:38 Download


  • Hystrix instrumentation

    This release contains support for versions 1.0.2 through 1.4 of the Hystrix framework. You will now see timing information related to each Hystrix Command's run and getFallback methods. Chained Hystrix commands will be linked into one transaction.


  • This release fixes a bug in New Relic's Cross Application Tracing (CAT) that could cause incorrect service and transaction maps.

    The problem would happen when non-identical applications, with identical transaction names, would appear to be communicating (in the Transaction / Service maps), when in fact, they were not.

    Note: Using a combination of pre-3.23.0 and 3.23.0+ can result in external calls between the old and new agents to not show up in the map. To fix this, upgrade all of your agents to 3.23.0+ at the same time

  • Resolved an issue where an application running on Tomcat and containing a large number of static JSPs (5000+) could cause a memory leak within the agent.

Monday, November 16, 2015 - 14:15 Download


  • Fixed an issue that caused Ning's AsyncHttpClient WebSockets requests to fail, or the application not to start.

  • Fixed an issue that could cause an extra transaction to be created, a background transaction named NettyDispatcher.

  • Removed the deprecated bootstrap.classpath configuration, as it could result in the Java agent's instrumentation failing to load.

Friday, November 6, 2015 - 10:25 Download


  • Play Framework 2.4 Instrumentation, and Play Framework 2 Improvements

    Previous Java Agent releases supported the Play Framework up to version 2.3. This release includes instrumentation for Play 2.4.x. This release provides more insight than ever before for all versions of Play 2, including improved segment names, and better signal-to-noise ratio in transaction details.

    This instrumentation also takes advantage of the new response time line in the New Relic UI. Because Play is a reactive framework that encourages concurrent activity, your total time for transaction components will often be greater than the response time. If the total time is less than response time, it may indicate resource exhaustion. By separating the total time from the response time, you get a clear picture of when you are getting the benefit of concurrency.

    If you have used the Java Agent to monitor Play before this release, you may see a decrease in response time. The new response time metric more accurately reflects the time from initial request to response.

    We support Play applications written in Java or Scala 2.9.3 - 2.11.x.

    Note: The deprecated -Dnewrelic.bootstrap_classpath system property can result in missing instrumentation and should not be used.

  • Netty 3.4 - 4.x Instrumentation

    This release updates our Netty support to include versions from 3.4 to 4.x. Previous release supported up to Netty 3.9. The agent will start transactions for server inbound I/O. The agent will instrument Netty HTTP methods to enable cross application tracing (CAT) in Netty transactions.

  • AsyncHttpClient Instrumentation 1.0.2 - 1.9.x

    In this release, you will see the time spent in external service calls made using AsyncHttpClient (also known as Ning Http Client). If the external service is also running New Relic, you will see cross application tracing (CAT) details as well. This includes external calls made from Play WSAPI, which uses AsyncHttpClient.

    Note: As in previous releases, Play 1 applications will not report AsyncHttpClient activity.

  • Akka Instrumentation 2.0 - 2.4

    This release enhances our Akka instrumentation by linking an actor message sender to an actor message receiver in the same transaction. In order to avoid over-instrumentation, our Akka instrumentation does not actually start transactions. If you would like a given actor call to mark the beginning of a transaction, you will need to use the @Trace(dispatcher=true) annotation, or some other form of custom instrumentation.


This release supports core Akka, not all Akka extensions. In particular, it does not identify transactions that have been routed by Spray, Akka HTTP, or Akka Streams. We have heard from customers that these frameworks are important, and we expect to support them soon! Stay tuned to the Java agent incubator, since we may provide an early access instrumentation module for these frameworks before we release them in the agent.

Known Issues:

  • If your application uses AsyncHttpClient's WebSockets, do not use this version. AsyncHttpClient WebSockets requests will fail, or the application will not start.
  • In some cases, calls to NewRelic's getBrowserTimingHeader and getBrowserTimingFooter are ignored.
Thursday, October 1, 2015 - 16:09 Download



  • Fixed a memory leak in async continuations instrumentation for Jetty 7 and 8.
  • Improved error handling with invalid JMX .yml extension files.
  • Improved Circuit Breaker logging in the event of a Circuit Breaker trip.
  • Fixed a bug in Tomcat 7+ instrumentation where request parameters could occasionally get stripped when using an async servlet with capture_params set to true.


The Java Agent now collects the following information for web transactions:

  • Accept, Host, User-Agent, Content-Length HTTP request headers
  • HTTP request method, for example POST or GET
  • Content-Type HTTP response header

Known issues

  • Fixed in 3.25.0:
    • Setting enable_custom_tracing configuration flag to false can inadvertently disable Netty instrumentation.
    • In some cases JAX-RS annotations on interfaces are not observed, causing transactions using JAX-RS services to be named on the servlet rather than the web servicepath and method.
  • Fixed in 3.24.1:
    • The Java agent's Play 2 transaction tracing instrumentation may be incomplete and cause gaps in cross application tracing.
  • Fixed in 3.24.0:
    • The Java agent's EJB instrumentation may cause a StackOverflowException to appear in application logs.
    • Applications may continue to experience the additional Circuit Breaker overhead even when disabled.
    • The Java agent may experience increased overhead when using Cross Application Tracing and a large number of threads.
  • Fixed in 3.23.0
    • This release may experience a memory leak within the agent for Tomcat containing a large number of static JSPs (5000+).
    • When a transaction makes multiple calls to a database with the same obfuscated SQL, a NullPointerException is may get thrown in the agent.
    • This release contains a bug in New Relic's Cross Application Tracing (CAT) that can cause incorrect service and transaction maps.

The problem happens when non-identical applications, with identical transaction names, would appear to be communicating (in the Transaction / Service maps), when in fact, they were not.

Using a combination of pre-3.23.0 and 3.23.0+ can result in external calls between the old and new agents to not show up in the map. To fix this, upgrade all of your agents to 3.23.0+ at the same time.

Tuesday, September 1, 2015 - 13:18 Download


  • JCache

    The Java Agent now instruments the JCache API. The instrumentation times cache operations of implementations of the JCache API.

    To get additional information about your operations in the Databases page, enable com.newrelic.instrumentation.jcache-datastore-1.0.0 in your newrelic.yml. This will incur additional overhead.

         enabled: true


  • Circuit Breaker alerts now better align with data displayed in JVMs tab.

  • In some cases the Java Agent's HttpURLConnection instrumentation could report incorrect external response time metrics

  • The Java Agent's MongoDB instrumentation no longer reports errors due to runtime exceptions that are caught and handled by applications.

  • Fixed an issue where Guice dynamic proxies could be instrumented, potentially causing MGI issues.

  • In rare cases a deadlock would occur at startup on some WebSphere applications.

  • Fixed an issue that could cause missing Cross Application Tracing information on WebLogic 12 when using HttpURLConnection.

Thursday, August 13, 2015 - 10:43 Download


  • Fixed an issue that could cause NoClassDefFoundErrors when using JDBC ResultSet instrumentation on JBoss.
Friday, August 7, 2015 - 12:12 Download


  • In some cases JBoss 4.x could fail to start due to a NullPointerException.

  • In some cases Dropwizard appservers could fail to start due to a ClassCastException during log initialization.

Wednesday, July 29, 2015 - 16:17 Download


  • Redis

    The agent’s Redis instrumentation is now more efficient.


  • In some cases the HttpClient 3 instrumentation could overstate the external call count.

  • In rare cases the agent would report errors that it was configured to ignore.

  • Some line numbers did not display correctly in stack traces.

Wednesday, July 1, 2015 - 14:42 Download


  • Jetty

    Updated Jetty instrumentation to support Jetty 9.3.

  • Thrift

    Added support for Apache Thrift 0.8 and greater. This instrumentation automatically adds timing to Thrift calls and sets transaction names based on Thrift method names. It can be disabled in the newrelic.yml by adding:

        enabled: false
  • Resin

    The New Relic Resin Instrumentation now reports errors as HttpErrors, allowing them to be ignored.

  • Heap Alerting

    A new heap utilization metric has been created for alerting purposes. This metric tracks the percentage of heap in use as a number between 0 and 1, where 0 means no heap usage and 1 means a full heap. The new metric is: Memory/Heap/Utilization

  • Exception messages for allow list

    Java exception messages will now be obfuscated when high security mode is enabled. If specific exception messages should be allowed through, they can be added to your allow list with the following configuration property:

        whitelist: 'java.lang.NullPointerException,java.lang.IllegalStateException'

    The allow list is a comma-delimited string of exception class package + class name. This can be enabled or disabled independently of high security mode with the following property:

        enabled: true
Tuesday, June 30, 2015 - 14:14 Download


  • Fixed a bug in 3.17.0, that in rare cases could cause an application thread to die. In this case, the agent log has many messages, “ERROR: Inconsistent state!”
Thursday, June 11, 2015 - 13:19 Download


  • Websphere Liberty Profile

    The Java agent now provides instrumentation for WebSphere Liberty Profile. This includes web transaction visibility, Cross Application Tracing, and app server stats.

  • Performance improvements

    The Java agent now starts more quickly so applications are available sooner. This release also reduces agent overhead at run time.

  • Customize hostname displayed in APM

    A new configuration setting has been added: process_host.display_name. When set in the newrelic.yml configuration file, the display name identifies the host in the APM UI, along with the hostname that the agent automatically captures.

        display_name: hostname

    In addition, the display name can be set using the NEW_RELIC_PROCESS_HOST_DISPLAY_NAME environment variable. This property can be viewed in all Insights transaction events.

  • WebLogic and WebSphere instance name available

    The instance name for WebLogic and WebSphere application servers is now available in transaction traces, traced errors, and Insights transaction events.

  • Custom instrumentation of transaction attributes is disabled by default

    Custom attributes defined using the Instrumentation tab in the UI are now disabled by default. In order to enable these attributes, you must have High Security mode disabled and you must place the following text in the common: block of your newrelic.yml:

        attributes_enabled: true


  • Very large thread profiles were failing to report to RPM, causing the site to display a time out message. The agent will now truncate the size of the profile before sending.
  • Cross application tracing date was failing to report when using Jersey 2 endpoints.
  • Spring AOP instrumentation is now disabled by default. It was exercising a bug in certain versions of Java 8 that caused the JVM to crash. To re-enable, include the following in your newrelic.yml:

           enabled: true
  • RabbitMQ metrics could double-report for some versions of RabbitMQ. This was introduced in Java agent version 3.16.1 and is fixed in this version.

  • In rare cases the agent would report a LinkageError.
Thursday, May 14, 2015 - 15:49 Download


  • Redis

    Added support for the Jedis client versions 1.4.0 or higher. You can now see your Redis calls in breakdowns in the overview chart, entries in the Databases tab, and segments in transaction traces.

  • RabbitMQ

    Updated RabbitMQ instrumentation to support RabbitMQ 3.5 and higher.

  • Cross Application Tracing API

    Use the cross application tracing API when the agent does not provide cross application tracing support for your application. See the documentation

  • Play 2 Framework

    Improved instrumentation for Play controller classes.

  • Circuit Breaker

    Starting in this release, the New Relic Java agent detects when memory is nearly exhausted and trips a “circuit breaker” that limits the agent’s memory usage. The agent won’t report transactions while the circuit breaker is tripped, so throughput will be understated. In the rare case that the circuit breaker trips, the New Relic UI will provide more information. For more details, see the documentation.

  • Added configuration to disable Deadlock Detection

    Under very heavy load conditions with many threads, the Deadlock Detector service may slow response time. You can now disable this feature with the following setting:

        enabled: false
  • Reduced the memory overhead of the Java agent


  • Play 2 Framework

    The Java Agent now honors the segment_limit setting for async traces, and can now handle much deeper async traces. This is useful to decrease if you're experiencing slower response time or high memory overhead when executing large async transactions.

    Cross-application requests from other New Relic-instrumented applications will reliably appear in the App and Transaction maps.

  • The proxy_host name is no longer sent to New Relic.

  • Fixed issue where external transactions were reported twice when using HttpURLConnection. Previously, this caused throughput to appear doubled.

Tuesday, March 31, 2015 - 11:45 Download


  • Labels and Rollups

The New Relic Java agent now supports the ability to apply labels to applications, so that you can easily sort, filter, and page through all of the applications on your account's Applications list.

Configuration can be done in the newrelic.yml file:

    labels: Server:One;Data Center:Primary

More information on using labels to categorize your applications can be found in the New Relic APM documentation.

  • With this version of the Java Agent, you can update Custom instrumentation XML in the extensions folder and it will be reloaded within a minute.


  • Prior to this version, some thread profiles would time out and not display. Thread profiles will now complete reliably.

  • The Java Agent now works around IBM JVM bug IV25688. The agent will scale back a small amount of its instrumentation on old IBM JVMs to avoid inducing the bug. The workaround should leave most customers unaffected. Loss of instrumentation caused by the workaround can be fixed by upgrading the JVM to the latest service release.

Wednesday, February 25, 2015 - 11:23 Download


  • Synthetics transaction tracing

    New Relic Synthetics monitors your site from around the world. When you use Synthetics to monitor your Java application, up to 20 detailed transaction traces will now be captured every minute when the application is probed from Synthetics. To learn more about this feature, visit our documentation

  • EJB Session Beans

    The Java agent now monitors Enterprise Java Beans (EJB) 3.0 session beans. The agent instruments @Stateless and @Stateful EJBs, and those that extend java.ejb.SessionBean. The agent traces methods declared by corresponding interfaces annotated with @Remote and @Local.

  • Unified view for SQL database and NoSQL datastore products.

    The response time charts in the application overview page will now include NoSQL datastores, such as Cassandra and MongoDB,and also the product name of existing SQL databases such as MySQL, Postgres, Oracle, etc. For existing SQL databases, in addition to the existing breakdown of SQL statements and operations, the queries are now also associated with the database product being used. For NoSQL datastores, such as Cassandra and MongoDB, we have now added information about operations performed against those products, similar to what is being done for SQL databases.

    This new unified Databases page will enable the filtering of metrics and operations by product, and includes a table listing all operations.

    Because this introduces a notable change to how SQL database metrics are collected, it is important that you upgrade the agent version on all hosts.If you are unable to transition to the latest agent version on all hosts at the same time, you can still access old and new metric data for SQL databases, but the information will be split across two separate views.

  • Datastax Cassandra client

    Added support for the Datastax Cassandra client versions 2.1.2 or higher. This will include breakdowns in the overview chart, entries in the Databases tab, and segments in transaction traces. Note: uses of the client's async API will not be captured in transaction traces.

  • MongoDB client

    Added support for MongoDB client versions 2.12.0 up to but not including 3.0+. This will include breakdowns in the overview chart, entries in the Databases tab, and segments in transaction traces.

  • API Reported Errors

    API reported errors can now be prioritized on a transaction over tracer reported errors. Add the following config to allow prioritizing:

      ignoreErrorPriority: false


  • The Java Agent may now capture traces for transactions that resulted in an error (4xx or 5xx response code). Prior to this release, the agent would only capture traces for successful responses.

  • Updated default newrelic.yml to use transaction_events.max_samples_stored instead of deprecated analytics_events.max_samples_stored property.

  • JBoss dispatcher reports correctly for clustered environments where jboss.home and jboss.home.dir are not set.

  • Resolved a bug which caused certain Jetty configurations to stop sending metric data.

  • Under very light load, the Agent could send incorrect transaction timestamps.

  • Fixed parsing error in log_file_count setting. Prior to this release, this setting produced one more log file than expected.

Tuesday, January 20, 2015 - 09:46 Download


  • Custom Insights events API

    In addition to attaching custom attributes to the events that the Java agent generates automatically for each transaction, you can now record custom event types into Insights with the new NewRelic.getAgent().getInsights().recordCustomEvent API.

  • The agent now captures and reports thread profiles in XRay Sessions for non-web transactions.


  • Incorrect JMS transaction names for users of Oracle ATG Web Commerce
  • In rare cases, application code would encounter a NoClassDefFoundError for one or more classes contained in the newrelic.jar.
Thursday, January 8, 2015 - 12:06 Download


This is a bugfix release for the legacy Java SE5 version of the agent. Unless you are a Java SE5 user, use the latest version of the New Relic Java agent.

  • Fixed an issue that in rare cases could cause the agent to cease reporting data until JVM restart.

Known issues

  • X-ray sessions sometimes return no transaction traces. Many x-ray session runs can cause a memory leak.
  • Play framework

    • Higher overhead with Play 2 than later releases.
    • Does not work properly with Play 2.2
    • Counts as an error.
    • Play transaction does not complete until timeout expires
    • When using Play, ignoreTransaction call does not take effect
  • In some cases running Weblogic, the Java agent fails certificate validation when connecting to New Relic. This may require a workaround.
  • This release contains some inconsistencies in the instrumentation of Hibernate across versions.
  • This release requires a workaround to use SSL with WebSphere.
  • Potential memory leak when app continually creates ClassLoaders.
  • Rare memory leak if agent does not report to New Relic for an extended period.
  • When running IBM JVM without WebSphere, you must set the sync_startup flag set to true in the common section of newrelic.yml: sync_startup: true.


If you require a workaround for one of these issues, please open a ticket at

Monday, December 22, 2014 - 15:58 Download


  • Play 2 async activity is no longer tracked when transaction is ignored.
  • Reduced GC overhead when monitoring Play 2 applications.
  • Reduced memory usage when inspecting slowest SQL statements.

Config Changes

  • stack_based_naming now false by default.

    The stack_based_naming in the transaction_tracer stanza is now false by default. Stack-based naming caused significant overhead in many Scala applications, so it now must be set to true explicitly. Set to true for better naming of trace detail segments in Scala Play applications.

        stack_based_naming: true


  • Memory leak when applications using servlets are continuously reloaded inside the JVM.
  • Memory leak with long running transactions performing a high number of external calls.
  • In some cases for JBoss application servers, two JVMs were being displayed in the UI when there was actually only one.
Thursday, November 6, 2014 - 09:25 Download


  • Various bug fixes