Provided by: rsyslog_1.19.12-1_i386
rsyslog.conf - rsyslogd(8) configuration file
The rsyslog.conf file is the main configuration file for the
rsyslogd(8) which logs system messages on *nix systems. This file
specifies rules for logging. For special features see the rsyslogd(8)
manpage. Ryslog.conf is backward-compatible with sysklogd’s syslog.conf
file. So if you migrate from syklogd you can rename it and it should
Lines starting with a hash mark (’#’) and empty lines are ignored.
Rsyslog.conf should contain following sections (sorted by recommended
order in file):
Global directives set some global properties of whole rsyslog
daemon, for example size of main message queue
($MainMessageQueueSize), loading external modules ($ModLoad) and
so on. All global directives need to be specified on a line by
their own and must start with a dollar-sign. The complete list
of global directives can be found in html documentation in doc
directory or online on web pages.
Templates allow you to specify format of the logged message.
They are also used for dynamic file name generation. They have
to be defined before they are used in rules. For more info about
templates see TEMPLATES section of this manpage.
Output channels provide an umbrella for any type of output that
the user might want. They have to be defined before they are
used in rules. For more info about output channels see OUTPUT
CHANNELS section of this manpage.
Rules (selector + action)
Every rule line consists of two fields, a selector field and an
action field. These two fields are separated by one or more
spaces or tabs. The selector field specifies a pattern of
facilities and priorities belonging to the specified action.
The action field of a rule describes what to do with the message. In
general, message content is written to a kind of "logfile". But also
other actions might be done, like writing to a database table or
forwarding to another host.
Typically messages are logged to real files. The file has to be
specified with full pathname, beginning with a slash (’/’).
*.* /var/log/traditionalfile.log;TraditionalFormat #
log to a file in the traditional format
This version of rsyslogd(8) has support for logging output to named
pipes (fifos). A fifo or named pipe can be used as a destination for
log messages by prepending a pipe symbol (’|’) to the name of the file.
This is handy for debugging. Note that the fifo must be created with
the mkfifo(1) command before rsyslogd(8) is started.
Terminal and console
If the file you specified is a tty, special tty-handling is done, same
To forward messages to another host, prepend the hostname with the at
sign ("@"). A single at sign means that messages will be forwarded via
UDP protocol (the standard for syslog). If you prepend two at signs
("@@"), the messages will be transmitted via TCP.
Please note that this version of rsyslogd by default does NOT forward
messages it has received from the network to another host. Specify the
"-h" option to enable this.
In the example above, messages are forwarded via UDP to the machine
192.168.0.1, the destination port defaults to 514.
List of users
Usually critical messages are also directed to ‘‘root’’ on that
machine. You can specify a list of users that shall get the message by
simply writing the login. You may specify more than one user by
separating them with commas (’,’). If they’re logged in they get the
message. Don’t think a mail would be sent, that might be too late.
Everyone logged on
Emergency messages often go to all users currently online to notify
them that something strange is happening with the system. To specify
this wall(1)-feature use an asterisk (’*’).
This allows logging of the message to a database table. Currently, only
MySQL databases are supported. By default, a MonitorWare-compatible
schema is required for this to work. You can create that schema with
the createDB.SQL file that came with the rsyslog package. You can also
use any other schema of your liking - you just need to define a proper
template and assign this template to the action.
The database writer is called by specifying a greater-then sign (’>’)
in front of the database connect information. Immediately after that
sign the database host name must be given, a comma, the database name,
another comma, the database user, a comma and then the user’s password.
If a specific template is to be used, a semicolon followed by the
template name can follow the connect information.
Important: to use the database functionality, the MySQL output module
must be loaded in the config file BEFORE the first database table
action is used. This is done by placing the $ModLoad MySQL directive
some place above the first use of the database write (we recommend
doing at the the beginning of the config file). You have to install
the rsyslog-mysql package to get this module.
If the discard action is carried out, the received message is
immediately discarded. Discard can be highly effective if you want to
filter out some annoying messages that otherwise would fill your log
files. To do that, place the discard actions early in your log files.
This often plays well with property-based filters, giving you great
freedom in specifying what you do not want.
Discard is just the single tilde character with no further parameters.
*.* ~ # discards everything.
Binds an output channel definition (see there for details) to this
action. Output channel actions must start with a $-sign, e.g. if you
would like to bind your output channel definition "mychannel" to the
action, use "$mychannel". Output channels support template definitions
like all all other actions.
This executes a program in a subshell. The program is passed the
template-generated message as the only command line parameter. Rsyslog
waits until the program terminates and only then continues to run.
The program-to-execute can be any valid executable. It receives the
template string as a single parameter (argv).
Rsyslog offers two different types "filter conditions":
* "traditional" severity and facility based selectors
* property-based filters
Rsyslogd supports BSD-style blocks inside rsyslog.conf. Each block of
lines is separated from the previous block by a program or hostname
specification. A block will only log messages corresponding to the most
recent program and hostname specifications given. Thus, a block which
selects "ppp" as the program, directly followed by a block that selects
messages from the hostname "dialhost", then the second block will only
log messages from the ppp program on dialhost.
Selectors are the traditional way of filtering syslog messages. They
have been kept in rsyslog with their original syntax, because it is
well-known, highly effective and also needed for compatibility with
stock syslogd configuration files. If you just need to filter based on
priority and facility, you should do this with selector lines. They are
not second-class citizens in rsyslog and offer the best performance for
Property-based filters are unique to rsyslogd. They allow to filter on
any property, like HOSTNAME, syslogtag and msg.
A property-based filter must start with a colon in column 0. This tells
rsyslogd that it is the new filter type. The colon must be followed by
the property name, a comma, the name of the compare operation to carry
out, another comma and then the value to compare against. This value
must be quoted. There can be spaces and tabs between the commas.
Property names and compare operations are case-sensitive, so "msg"
works, while "MSG" is an invalid property name. In brief, the syntax is
:property, [!]compare-operation, "value"
The following compare-operations are currently supported:
Checks if the string provided in value is contained in
Compares the "value" string provided and the property
contents. These two values must be exactly equal to
Checks if the value is found exactly at the beginning of
the property value
Compares the property against the provided regular
Every output in rsyslog uses templates - this holds true for files,
user messages and so on. Templates compatible with the stock syslogd
formats are hardcoded into rsyslogd. If no template is specified, we
use one of these hardcoded templates. Search for "template_" in
syslogd.c and you will find the hardcoded ones.
A template consists of a template directive, a name, the actual
template text and optional options. A sample is:
$template MyTemplateName,"\7Text %property% some more
The "$template" is the template directive. It tells rsyslog that this
line contains a template. The backslash is an escape character. For
example, \7 rings the bell (this is an ASCII value), \n is a new line.
The set in rsyslog is a bit restricted currently.
All text in the template is used literally, except for things within
percent signs. These are properties and allow you access to the
contents of the syslog message. Properties are accessed via the
property replacer and it can for example pick a substring or do date-
specific formatting. More on this is the PROPERTY REPLACER section of
% = \%
\ = \\ --> ’\’ is used to escape (as in C)
$template TraditionalFormat,%timegenerated% %HOSTNAME%
Properties can be accessed by the property replacer (see there for
Please note that as of 1.15.0, templates can also by used to generate
selector lines with dynamic file names. For example, if you would like
to split syslog messages from different hosts to different files (one
per host), you can define the following template:
This template can then be used when defining an output selector line.
It will result in something like "/var/log/system-localhost.log"
The <options> part is optional. It carries options influencing the
template as whole. See details below. Be sure NOT to mistake template
options with property options - the later ones are processed by the
property replacer and apply to a SINGLE property, only (and not the
Template options are case-insensitive. Currently defined are:
sql format the string suitable for a SQL statement in MySQL
format. This will replace single quotes ("’") and the
backslash character by their backslash-escaped
counterpart ("´" and "\") inside each field. Please note
that in MySQL configuration, the NO_BACKSLASH_ESCAPES
mode must be turned off for this format to work (this is
stdsql format the string suitable for a SQL statement that is to
be sent to a standards-compliant sql server. This will
replace single quotes ("’") by two single quotes ("’’")
inside each field. You must use stdsql together with
MySQL if in MySQL configuration the NO_BACKSLASH_ESCAPES
is turned on.
Either the sql or stdsql option MUST be specified when a template is
used for writing to a database, otherwise injection might occur. Please
note that due to the unfortunate fact that several vendors have
violated the sql standard and introduced their own escape methods, it
is impossible to have a single option doing all the work. So you
yourself must make sure you are using the right format. If you choose
the wrong one, you are still vulnerable to sql injection.
Please note that the database writer *checks* that the sql option is
present in the template. If it is not present, the write database
action is disabled. This is to guard you against accidental forgetting
it and then becoming vulnerable to SQL injection. The sql option can
also be useful with files - especially if you want to import them into
a database on another machine for performance reasons. However, do NOT
use it if you do not have a real need for it - among others, it takes
some toll on the processing time. Not much, but on a really busy system
you might notice it ;)
The default template for the write to database action has the sql
option set. As we currently support only MySQL and the sql option
matches the default MySQL configuration, this is a good choice.
However, if you have turned on NO_BACKSLASH_ESCAPES in your MySQL
config, you need to supply a template with the stdsql option. Otherwise
you will become vulnerable to SQL injection.
Please note that the samples are split across multiple lines. A
template MUST NOT actually be split across multiple lines.
A template that resembles traditional syslogd file output:
$template TraditionalFormat,"%timegenerated% %HOSTNAME%
A template that tells you a little more about the message:
A template for RFC 3164 format:
$template RFC3164fmt,"<%PRI%>%TIMESTAMP% %HOSTNAME%
A template for the format traditionally used for user messages:
$template usermsg," XXXX%syslogtag%%msg%0r"
And a template with the traditional wall-message format:
$template wallmsg,"\r\n\7Message from syslogd@%HOSTNAME% at
A template that can be used for writing to a database (please note the
SQL template option)
$template MySQLInsert,"insert iut, message, receivedat values
(’%iut%’, ’%msg:::UPPERCASE%’, ’%timegenerated:::date-mysql%’)
into systemevents\r\n", SQL
NOTE 1: This template is embedded into core application under
name StdDBFmt , so you don’t need to define it.
NOTE 2: You have to have MySQL module installed to use this
Output Channels are a new concept first introduced in rsyslog 0.9.0. As
of this writing, it is most likely that they will be replaced by
something different in the future.
So if you use them, be prepared to change you configuration file
syntax when you upgrade to a later release.
Output channels are defined via an $outchannel directive. It’s syntax
is as follows:
name is the name of the output channel (not the file), file-name is the
file name to be written to, max-size the maximum allowed size and
action-on-max-size a command to be issued when the max size is reached.
This command always has exactly one parameter. The binary is that part
of action-on-max-size before the first space, its parameter is
everything behind that space.
Keep in mind that $outchannel just defines a channel with "name". It
does not activate it. To do so, you must use a selector line (see
below). That selector line includes the channel name plus an $ sign in
front of it. A sample might be:
The property replacer is a core component in rsyslogd’s output system.
A syslog message has a number of well-defined properties (see below).
Each of this properties can be accessed and manipulated by the property
replacer. With it, it is easy to use only part of a property value or
manipulate the value, e.g. by converting all characters to lower case.
Syslog message properties are used inside templates. They are accessed
by putting them between percent signs. Properties can be modified by
the property replacer. The full syntax is as follows:
propname is the name of the property to access. It is case-sensitive.
msg the MSG part of the message (aka "the message" ;))
rawmsg the message exactly as it was received from the socket. Should
be useful for debugging.
hostname from the message
hostname of the system the message was received from (in a relay
chain, this is the system immediately in front of us and not
necessarily the original sender)
TAG from the message
the "static" part of the tag, as defined by BSD syslogd. For
example, when TAG is "named", programname is "named".
PRI PRI part of the message - undecoded (single value)
the PRI part of the message in a textual form (e.g.
IUT the monitorware InfoUnitType - used when talking to a
MonitorWare backend (also for phpLogCon)
the facility from the message - in numerical form
the facility from the message - in text form
severity from the message - in numerical form
severity from the message - in text form
timestamp when the message was RECEIVED. Always in high
timestamp from the message. Resolution depends on what was
provided in the message (in most cases, only seconds)
alias for timereported
The contents of the PROTOCOL-VERSION field from IETF draft
The contents of the STRUCTURED-DATA field from IETF draft draft-
The contents of the APP-NAME field from IETF draft draft-ietf-
PROCID The contents of the PROCID field from IETF draft draft-ietf-
MSGID The contents of the MSGID field from IETF draft draft-ietf-
$NOW The current date stamp in the format YYYY-MM-DD
$YEAR The current year (4-digit)
$MONTH The current month (2-digit)
$DAY The current day of the month (2-digit)
$HOUR The current hour in military (24 hour) time (2-digit)
The current minute (2-digit)
Properties starting with a $-sign are so-called system properties.
These do NOT stem from the message but are rather internally-generated.
FromChar and toChar are used to build substrings. They specify the
offset within the string that should be copied. Offset counting starts
at 1, so if you need to obtain the first 2 characters of the message
text, you can use this syntax: "%msg:1:2%". If you do not wish to
specify from and to, but you want to specify options, you still need to
include the colons. For example, if you would like to convert the full
message text to lower case, use "%msg:::lowercase%". If you would like
to extract from a position until the end of the string, you can place a
dollar-sign ("$") in toChar (e.g. %msg:10:$%, which will extract from
position 10 to the end of the string).
There is also support for To use them, you need to place a "R" into
FromChar. This tells rsyslog that a regular expression instead of
position-based extraction is desired. The actual regular expression
must then be provided in toChar. The regular expression must be
followed by the string "--end". It denotes the end of the regular
expression and will not become part of it. If you are using regular
expressions, the property replacer will return the part of the property
text that matches the regular expression. An example for a property
replacer sequence with a regular expression is: "%msg:R:.*Sev:. \(.*\)
Also, extraction can be done based on so-called "fields". To do so,
place a "F" into FromChar. A field in its current definition is
anything that is delimited by a delimiter character. The delimiter by
default is TAB (US-ASCII value 9). However, if can be changed to any
other US-ASCII character by specifying a comma and the decimal US-ASCII
value of the delimiter immediately after the "F". For example, to use
comma (",") as a delimiter, use this field specifier: "F,44". If your
syslog data is delimited, this is a quicker way to extract than via
regular expressions (actually, a *much* quicker way). Field counting
starts at 1. Field zero is accepted, but will always lead to a "field
not found" error. The same happens if a field number higher than the
number of fields in the property is requested. The field number must be
placed in the "ToChar" parameter. An example where the 3rd field
(delimited by TAB) from the msg property is extracted is as follows:
"%msg:F:3%". The same example with semicolon as delimiter is
Please note that the special characters "F" and "R" are case-sensitive.
Only upper case works, lower case will return an error. There are no
white spaces permitted inside the sequence (that will lead to error
messages and will NOT provide the intended result).
Property options are case-insensitive. Currently, the following options
convert property to lowercase only
convert property text to uppercase only
The last LF in the message (if any), is dropped. Especially
useful for PIX.
format as mysql date
format as RFC 3164 date
format as RFC 3339 date
replace control characters (ASCII value 127 and values less then
32) with an escape sequence. The sequence is "#<charval>" where
charval is the 3-digit decimal value of the control character.
For example, a tabulator would be replaced by "#009".
replace control characters by spaces
drop control characters - the resulting string will neither
contain control characters, escape sequences nor any other
replacement character like space.
Configuration file for rsyslogd
rsyslogd(8), logger(1), syslog(3)
The complete documentation can be found in the doc folder of the
rsyslog distribution or online at
The rsyslogd is taken from sysklogd sources, which have been heavily
modified by Rainer Gerhards (firstname.lastname@example.org) and others.