The syslog-ng application is not log analysis software. It can filter log messages and select only the ones matching certain criteria. It can even convert the messages and restructure them to a predefined format, or parse the messages and segment them into different fields. But syslog-ng cannot interpret and analyze the meaning behind the messages, or recognize patterns in the occurrence of different messages.
Log messages contain information about the events happening on the hosts. Monitoring system events is essential for security and system health monitoring reasons.
The original syslog protocol separates messages based on the priority of the message and the facility sending the message. These two parameters alone are often inadequate to consistently classify messages, as many applications might use the same facility, and the facility itself is not even included in the log message. To make things worse, many log messages contain unimportant information. The syslog-ng application helps you to select only the really interesting messages, and forward them to a central server.
Company policies or other regulations often require log messages to be archived. Storing the important messages in a central location greatly simplifies this process.
Version 3.23 of syslog-ng Open Source Edition includes the following main features.
In syslog-ng OSE version 3.23 and later, you can specify a comma-separated list of formats to parse multiple date formats with a single parser. For example:
date-parser(format( "%FT%T.%f", "%F %T,%f", "%F %T" ));
For details, see "Options of date-parser() parsers" in the Administration Guide.
You can now display the preprocessed configuration of syslog-ng OSE on the standard output using the syslog-ng --preprocess-into=/dev/stdout command.
You can now move or rename disk-buffer files using the dqtool relocate command.
You can now set the time-reap() option separately for each destination. Note that how this option works has also changed. For details, see "Global options" in the Administration Guide.
The syslog-ng application is used worldwide by companies and institutions who collect and manage the logs of several hosts, and want to store them in a centralized, organized way. Using syslog-ng is particularly advantageous for:
Internet Service Providers
Financial institutions and companies requiring policy compliance
Server, web, and application hosting companies
Wide area network (WAN) operators
Server farm administrators.