We maintain a Google Analytics account to track JBoss Tools usage. Google Analytics is designed to track web page usage but it might be adapted to track other applications. That's what we did for JBoss Tools and implemented an Eclipse plugin that shall help us to gather userfull informations about our users in an anonymous manner.
How do we track users?
When a JBoss Tools user starts its eclipse he triggers a hit to /tools/usage/action/wsstartup in our Google Analytics Account. There are other urls that are tracked (for instance /pureTest), but these are not triggered by JBoss Tools users and they're not relevant to our use case though.
|/tools/usage/action/wsstartup||A JBoss Tools user starts its Eclipse|
|/pureTest||Test plugin JUnit tests are run|
|Users browse our usage page on jboss.org http://jboss.org/tools/usage.html|
What are the user values we track?
Google Analytics is designed to track browsers and users browsing web sites. Our Eclipse plugin emulates a browser and reports values the way a browser would. Of course using JBoss Tools in Eclipse does not match the use case of browsing web pages at 100%. It's very close to it though. There are values that are unique to our use case (to track application usage) and are not present in browsers. We map those to values to settings Google Analytics tracks for browsers and misuse their original intent.