MySQL Databases can be developed to track any information type. MySQL is extremely fast, free, and reliable. Logging information about users requires attention to speed and reliability with exception handling programmed into to flow. Logging users means no interruption of the user experience while collecting pertinent tracking information.
Which data to collect is determined by the user behavior, which is in turn dictated by the functton being accessed. Logging modules can be programmed to be versatile multi-purposing handlers, as long as the database developer and the database programmer have taken the Big Picture into account.
Custom PHP functions and classes can be programmed to accept minimal data input and to automatically append key information types to the log entries. For example, the log function may accept the function module name being accessed, the user identifier, and the data being transacted. the date, IP Address and browser information could automatically be added to the log entry.
Security concerns are prevalent when using flat file log storage, much like session flat file storage. MySQL Databases offer greater dynamic access and security, but both methods of log storage should include a level of encryption when logged user data is of a sensitive nature. MySQL Database developers should have a level of Database Security as well as Security Programming.
Since log files can bloat with time and excessive user traffic, it is advisable to separate log file through time, by user, and by functions. How log files are differentiated depends on the MySQL Database Development and The Big Picture. Data analysis of a single log file that tracked 100,000 users over the course of a year for all functions is quite different from analyzing a log file or one user for one function subset over the course of one month.
MySQL Database programmers can develop any architecture required, as long as The Big Picture has been defined, clear goals have been set, and long term perspectives on storage, database security, and data analysis have been correctly evaluated.