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Ship logs using syslog to Logstash

Learn how configure Syslog to securely ship logs over SSL to your Stack via Logstash. This is a good choice when you need to ship logs from appliances or devices where you cannot run one of the beats shippers.

Follow this step by step guide to get 'logs' from your system to

Step 1 - Download the SSL Certificate

Download file and place in /etc/rsyslog.d/keys/ca.d/ or another directory

sudo mkdir -p /etc/rsyslog.d/keys/ca.d
sudo curl -o /etc/rsyslog.d/keys/ca.d/
rsyslog trusts these root CA keys to validate the key presented by, preventing man-in-the-middle attacks.

Step 2 - RSyslog

Edit the Syslog config file as below

$ActionSendStreamDriver gtls
$ActionSendStreamDriverMode 1
$ActionSendStreamDriverAuthMode x509/name
$ActionSendStreamDriverPermittedPeer *

*.* @@your-logstash-host:your-port
  • On many distros, also install the rsyslog-gnutls package (including CentOS, Fedora, Debian, and Ubuntu)
  • If possible run the latest minor versions of rsyslog v7 or v8. There are many TLS bugs in past versions.
  • Ensure you have @@ not a single @ infront of the host. This is so TCP is used.

Step 3 - Restart

Restart rsyslog so it detects the TLS-over-TCP destination:

sudo /etc/init.d/rsyslog restart

Step 4 - Troubleshooting

If you see either

could not load module '/usr/lib/rsyslog/',
rsyslog error -2078 [try ]


could not load module '/usr/lib/rsyslog/', 
dlopen: /usr/lib/rsyslog/ cannot open shared object file: No such file or directory
[try ]
First, make sure that module actually exists by running ls against the path in the error, such as:
ls -la /usr/lib/rsyslog/

If it doesn’t exist, install the related package (often called rsyslog-gnutls) or if you compiled rsyslog from source, compile the module.

sudo apt-get install rsyslog-gnutls
Second, ensure that the user which runs rsyslog has permissions to read’s public key. On many distributions, rsyslog starts as root and then drops to a user. In that case, in order to let all users read the key file, run the following command
chmod 644 /etc/rsyslog.d/keys/ca.d/
Finally confirm how you are loading the TLS Module:

If you are using $ModLoad lmnsd_gtls to explicitly load the TLS module, and that configuration option occurs before the $DefaultNetstreamDriverCAFile has been defined. Explicitly loading the module is rarely required and the configuration above does not use it.

We recommend removing that $ModLoad lmnsd_gtls option and relying on autoloading. If your lmnsd_gtls needs to be explicitly loaded, like because it is in a non-default location, move the $DefaultNetstreamDriverCAFile config line above the $ModLoad line.

Step 5 - Check for your logs

Now you should view your data:

View my data

If you don't see logs take a look at How to diagnose no data in Stack below for how to diagnose common issues.

Step 6 - how to diagnose no data in Stack

If you don't see data appearing in your Stack after following the steps, visit the Help Centre guide for steps to diagnose no data appearing in your Stack or Chat to support now.

Step 7 - Syslog dashboard

The Syslog module comes with predefined Kibana dashboards. To view your dashboards for any of your stacks, launch Logs and choose Dashboards.

Predefined kibana dashboard screenshot

Predefined kibana dashboard screenshot

Predefined kibana dashboard screenshot

Predefined kibana dashboard screenshot

Step 8 - Syslog Logging Overview

Syslog is a format of message logs commonly used across many operating systems & network devices to send data to a logging server. Event data recorded by the system logging protocol can then be accessed by IT teams for the purposes of auditing, diagnostics & improving operational efficiency.

Because Syslog is so often used across a variety of devices and systems, there is little standardization. This means that log data gathered by events being triggered may be hard to manage and understand quickly enough for swift implementation, especially in fast-growing businesses generating data faster than they can scale for.

Our Syslog log analyser allows you to conduct analysis of hundreds of GBs of Syslog log data fast, allowing you to identify the root cause of performance issues and prevent instances of downtime across your infrastructure.

If you need any further assistance with migrating your Syslogs logs to Logstash, we're here to help you get started. Feel free to reach out by contacting our support team by visiting our dedicated Help Centre or via live chat & we'll be happy to assist.

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