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rsyslog (82) Versions 1.7.0

Installs and configures rsyslog

cookbook 'rsyslog', '= 1.7.0', :supermarket
cookbook 'rsyslog', '= 1.7.0'
knife supermarket install rsyslog
knife supermarket download rsyslog
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rsyslog Cookbook CHANGELOG

Installs and configures rsyslog to replace sysklogd for client and/or server use. By default, the service will be configured to log to files on local disk. See the Recipes and Examples sections for other uses.

Major Changes in 1.2.0: See

Important Changes in 1.1.0: See the file for important changes to this cookbook. There are some incompatibilities with existing installations. Use version 1.0.0 if you're not ready for these changes.



Tested on Ubuntu 9.10, 10.04 and Red Hat 6.3

Ubuntu 8.04, 8.10, and 9.04 are no longer supported releases and have not been tested with this cookbook.


To use the recipe[rsyslog::client] recipe, you'll need to set up the rsyslog.server_search or rsyslog.server_ip attributes. See the Recipes and Examples sections below.


See attributes/default.rb for default values.

  • node['rsyslog']['log_dir'] - If the node is an rsyslog server, this specifies the directory where the logs should be stored.
  • node['rsyslog']['server'] - Determined automaticaly and set to true on the server.
  • node['rsyslog']['server_ip'] - If not defined then search will be used to determine rsyslog server. Default is nil. This can be a string or an array.
  • node['rsyslog']['server_search'] - Specify the criteria for the server search operation. Default is role:loghost.
  • node['rsyslog']['protocol'] - Specify whether to use udp or tcp for remote loghost. Default is tcp.
  • node['rsyslog']['port'] - Specify the port which rsyslog should connect to a remote loghost.
  • node['rsyslog']['remote_logs'] - Specify wether to send all logs to a remote server (client option). Default is true.
  • node['rsyslog']['per_host_dir'] - "PerHost" directories for template statements in 35-server-per-host.conf. Default value is the previous cookbook version's value, to preserve compatibility. See server recipe below.
  • node['rsyslog']['priv_seperation'] - Whether to use privilege seperation or not.
  • node['rsyslog']['max_message_size'] - Specify the maximum allowed message size. Default is 2k.
  • node['rsyslog']['user'] - Who should own the configuration files and directories
  • node['rsyslog']['group'] - Who should group-own the configuration files and directories
  • node['rsyslog']['defaults_file'] - The full path to the defaults/sysconfig file for the service.
  • node['rsyslog']['service_name'] - The platform-specific name of the service
  • node['rsyslog']['preserve_fqdn'] - Value of the $PreserveFQDN configuration directive in /etc/rsyslog.conf. Default is 'off' for compatibility purposes.
  • node['rsyslog']['high_precision_timestamps'] - Enable high precision timestamps, instead of the "old style" format. Default is 'false'.
  • node['rsyslog']['repeated_msg_reduction'] - Value of $RepeatedMsgReduction configuration directive in /etc/rsyslog.conf. Default is 'on'
  • node['rsyslog']['logs_to_forward'] - Specifies what logs should be sent to the remote rsyslog server. Default is all ( *.* ).



Installs the rsyslog package, manages the rsyslog service and sets up basic configuration for a standalone machine.


Includes recipe[rsyslog].

Uses node['rsyslog']['server_ip'] or Chef search (in that precedence order) to determine the remote syslog server's IP address. If search is used, the search query will look for the first ipaddress returned from the criteria specified in node['rsyslog']['server_search'].

If the node itself is a rsyslog server ie it has rsyslog.server set to true then the configuration is skipped.

If the node had an /etc/rsyslog.d/35-server-per-host.conf file previously configured, this file gets removed to prevent duplicate logging.

Any previous logs are not cleaned up from the log_dir.


Configures the node to be a rsyslog server. The chosen rsyslog server node should be defined in the server_ip attribute or resolvable by the specified search criteria specified in node['rsyslog']['server_search] (so that nodes making use of the client recipe can find the server to log to).

This recipe will create the logs in node['rsyslog']['log_dir'], and the configuration is in /etc/rsyslog.d/server.conf. This recipe also removes any previous configuration to a remote server by removing the /etc/rsyslog.d/remote.conf file.

The cron job used in the previous version of this cookbook is removed, but it does not remove any existing cron job from your system (so it doesn't break anything unexpectedly). We recommend setting up logrotate for the logfiles instead.

The log_dir will be concatenated with per_host_dir to store the logs for each client. Modify the attribute to have a value that is allowed by rsyslogs template matching values, see the rsyslog documentation for this.

Directory structure:

<%= @log_dir %>/<%= @per_host_dir %>/"logfile"

For example for the system with hostname www:


For example, to change this to just the hostname, set the attribute node['rsyslog']['per_host_dir'] via a role:

"rsyslog" => { "per_host_dir" => "%HOSTNAME%" }

At this time, the server can only listen on UDP or TCP.


Use recipe[rsyslog] to install and start rsyslog as a basic configured service for standalone systems.

Use recipe[rsyslog::client] to have nodes log to a remote server (which is found via the server_ip attribute or by the recipe's search call -- see client)

Use recipe[rsyslog::server] to set up a rsyslog server. It will listen on node['rsyslog']['port'] protocol node['rsyslog']['protocol'].

If you set up a different kind of centralized loghost (syslog-ng, graylog2, logstash, etc), you can still send log messages to it as long as the port and protocol match up with the server software. See Examples


A base role (e.g., roles/base.rb), applied to all nodes so they are syslog clients:

name "base"
description "Base role applied to all nodes

Then, a role for the loghost (should only be one):

name "loghost"
description "Central syslog server"

By default this will set up the clients search for a node with the loghost role to talk to the server on TCP port 514. Change the protocol and port rsyslog attributes to modify this.

If you want to specify another syslog compatible server with a role other than loghost, simply fill free to use the server_ip attribute or the server_search attribute.

Example role that sets the per host directory:

name "loghost"
description "Central syslog server"
  "rsyslog" => { "per_host_dir" => "%HOSTNAME%" }

License & Authors

Copyright:: 2009-2012, Opscode, Inc

Licensed under the Apache License, Version 2.0 (the "License");
you may not use this file except in compliance with the License.
You may obtain a copy of the License at

Unless required by applicable law or agreed to in writing, software
distributed under the License is distributed on an "AS IS" BASIS,
See the License for the specific language governing permissions and
limitations under the License.

Dependent cookbooks

This cookbook has no specified dependencies.

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