I’m sure plenty of people have used NGROK. It is a tool that I used a lot as a developer to quickly stand up and test webhooks if I needed to hit my local computer. It helped to just give me an external URL that I could use to get the data. However I recently had an instance where I needed to use it a little more in depth recently for a very odd instance with a client.
The coolest thing to me was that it showed requests coming in on the CLI. This allowed me to see that 200s were going back out and the application wasn’t just crashing constantly. This also included any other routes that might have been hit so that I can track down very specific issues. This just helped while the client was having issues and being able to see that things are coming through and that I should be seeing data.
It provides a dashboard that helps to show what the request looked like coming in as well as the response going out. This shows that it is probably not the greatest for a system processing sensitive data but this is super helpful from a more developer perspective. Something isn’t parsing right and you can immediately see what it was trying to parse without having to add thousands of print lines everywhere.
Being a person who loves CloudFlare Tunnels and has written articles about them. NGROK wins out on just ease of standing up a quick route. This isn’t something I would want to use for long term production needs, but overall it is super helpful for a quick “I need a route”. It is also great for the quick POC that you just want to run from your computer because it isn’t worth a full deployment (or you just ran out of time).
I will be keeping NGROK installed on my computers and will be adding it to some of the VMs that I have. I absolutely see myself using this regularly over the next while and will keep talking about it.
Disclaimer: I am not sponsored by NGROK in any way at the time of writing this. This is simply my experience and wanting to share a cool tool that I found.