Server Fault is a question and answer site for system and network administrators. It's 100% free, no registration required.

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

i'm attempting to set up my ec2 instance (running amazon linux which as i understand is built on RHEL 5) to forward log messages to but nothing is getting forwarded. as a sanity check i followed the instructions in this article to set up another ec2 instance as the central server and found that messages are not being received. So I tried executing logger -p TEST on the client machine and found nothing is added to /var/log/cron! Something is clearly not working! But rsyslogd is running:

ps aux | grep rsys


root 25362 0.0 0.0 183768 1328 ? Sl 14:27 0:00 /sbin/rsyslogd -i /var/run/ -c 5

for reference, here's the rsyslog.conf (removed the forwarding stuff for now until i get it working locally)

#### MODULES ####

$ModLoad    # provides support for local system logging (e.g. via logger command)
$ModLoad      # provides kernel logging support (previously done by rklogd)
#$ModLoad     # provides --MARK-- message capability

# Provides UDP syslog reception
#$UDPServerRun 514

# Provides TCP syslog reception
#$InputTCPServerRun 514


# Use default timestamp format
$ActionFileDefaultTemplate RSYSLOG_TraditionalFileFormat

# File syncing capability is disabled by default. This feature is usually not required, 
# not useful and an extreme performance hit
#$ActionFileEnableSync on

#### RULES ####

# Log all kernel messages to the console.
# Logging much else clutters up the screen.
kern.*                                                 /dev/console

# Log anything (except mail) of level info or higher.
# Don't log private authentication messages!
*.info;mail.none;authpriv.none;cron.none                /var/log/messages

# The authpriv file has restricted access.
authpriv.*                                              /var/log/secure

# Log all the mail messages in one place.
mail.*                                                  -/var/log/maillog

# Log cron stuff
cron.*                                                  /var/log/cron

# Everybody gets emergency messages
*.emerg                                                 *

# Save news errors of level crit and higher in a special file.
uucp,news.crit                                          /var/log/spooler

# Save boot messages also to boot.log
local7.*                                                /var/log/boot.log
share|improve this question
both TCP/UDP 514 are commented out. – gravyface Jul 15 '12 at 14:40
right that's because this is the client config not the server config – hackerhasid Jul 15 '12 at 19:28
up vote 5 down vote accepted

The only thing you need in rsyslog.conf to forward to a remote IP address is

*.* @@;

Regarding your other question...

I tried executing logger -p TEST on the client machine and found nothing is added to /var/log/cron!

Be sure you restart rsyslogd after changing the configuration; you also need to be sure that /var/log/cron exists.


To demonstrate what successful log entries look like, I started rsyslogd with rsyslogd -c4 -d; this sends all debugging to my ssh session. I am logging to /var/log/syslog. In a different ssh session, I ran logger -p "my test again"... this is what I see before it logs successfully to /var/log/syslog...

4578.692833385:b6d8fb70: Message from UNIX socket: #3
4578.692906216:b6d8fb70: logmsg: flags 4, from 'Bucksnort', msg Jul 15 10:02:58 mpenning: my test again
4578.692936284:b6d8fb70: Message has legacy syslog format.
4578.692977796:b6d8fb70: main Q: entry added, size now 1 entries
4578.693017277:b6d8fb70: wtpAdviseMaxWorkers signals busy
4578.693079869:b6d8fb70: main Q: EnqueueMsg advised worker start
4578.693117891:b6d8fb70: --------imuxsock calling select, active file descriptors (max 5): 3 5
4578.693210533:b7590b70: main Q: entry deleted, state 0, size now 0 entries
4578.693246128:b7590b70: testing filter, f_pmask 0
4578.693269892:b7590b70: testing filter, f_pmask 255
4578.693296429:b7590b70: Called action, logging to builtin-file
4578.693340007:b7590b70: file to log to: /var/log/syslog
4578.693369336:b7590b70: doWrite, pData->pStrm 0x96b6268, lenBuf 50
4578.693400172:b7590b70: strm 0x96b6268: file 7(syslog) flush, buflen 50
4578.693487314:b7590b70: strm 0x96b6268: file 7 write wrote 50 bytes
4578.693512965:b7590b70: testing filter, f_pmask 0
4578.693530524:b7590b70: testing filter, f_pmask 0
4578.693547988:b7590b70: testing filter, f_pmask 0
4578.693564966:b7590b70: testing filter, f_pmask 0
4578.693581783:b7590b70: testing filter, f_pmask 0
4578.693599197:b7590b70: testing filter, f_pmask 0
4578.693616153:b7590b70: testing filter, f_pmask 0
4578.693632854:b7590b70: testing filter, f_pmask 0
4578.693649647:b7590b70: testing filter, f_pmask 0
4578.693666837:b7590b70: testing filter, f_pmask 0
4578.693683852:b7590b70: testing filter, f_pmask 0
4578.693700593:b7590b70: testing filter, f_pmask 128
4578.693717070:b7590b70: testing filter, f_pmask 0
4578.693734486:b7590b70: testing filter, f_pmask 1
4578.693751624:b7590b70: testing filter, f_pmask 240
4578.693769534:b7590b70: Called action, logging to builtin-pipe
4578.693791155:b7590b70:  (/dev/xconsole)
4578.693820288:b7590b70: main Q:Reg/w0: worker IDLE, waiting for work.
share|improve this answer
i restarted rsyslogd (service rsyslog restart) and /var/log/cron does exist but is empty. i think the fact that nothing is forwarding is probably because nothing is even being written to logs. – hackerhasid Jul 15 '12 at 15:00
then start rsyslogd with -d and tell us what happens when you try logging again – Mike Pennington Jul 15 '12 at 15:01
this seems to have been a stupid mistake on my part. i rewrote the config file by hand and restarted the service and it seems to work fine. thanks for your help! – hackerhasid Jul 15 '12 at 15:42

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.