Forwarding Syslogs to External Servers

Photo by Javier Quiroga on Unsplash

What is syslog?

Syslog is a standard for collecting, routing, and storing log messages. This protocol allows sending logs to a central store. Syslogs are used by system admins to debug issues that occur in the system or application and also for monitoring purposes.

Syslog Deamon

The syslog daemon is a server process that facilitates message logging for applications and system processes. The type of Syslog deamon can be vary depending on your operating system.

example Syslog Daemons:

  • RSyslog
  • Syslogd
  • Syslog-ng

To know your syslog deamon, just check for the filename in /etc directory.

In RHL ,

ls /etc/*syslog*

ls /etc/*syslog*

If the above command doesn’t return anything you can simply install a Syslog daemon.


sudo yum install rsyslog

Forwarding Syslogs

Syslogs have the capability of routing logs through a network. This has made the ability of forwarding logs to external logging servers/tools like papertrail, SolarWinds Kiwi Syslog Server, Datadog, Dynatrace etc. This gives system admins a broader view of the systems that they are managing.

How to Forward Syslogs (Red Hat Enterprise Linux)

In built, Syslog communicates via UDP 514 and 601. You can simply forward your syslogs by adding a rule to rsyslog.conf

vi /etc/rsyslog.conf

imfile is a file input module that allows you to convert any standard text file into a Syslog message.

Following are the definitions for each directive

InputFileName : Name of the input log file. This path should be an absolute path.

InputFileTag : This is the tag to be used for messages that originate from this file

InputFileStateFile : Rsyslog must keep track of which parts of the to be monitored file it already processed. This is done in the state file. This file always is created in the rsyslog working directory

InputFileSeverity : The syslog severity to be assigned to lines read


InputFileFacility : The syslog facility to be assigned to lines read


The above rule saves the given log file to a given facility in syslog. After that, you can send all data from the given facility to your remote server.

[FACILITY].* @@hostname:<portnumber>
with sample values

Now you should be able to catch your particular syslog data from the remote server.




Dev Ops Engineer | Blogger

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Randula Koralage

Randula Koralage

Dev Ops Engineer | Blogger

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