Log File Management in Linux - Seeking Advice!

Hey everyone!

I’m currently grappling with managing log files on a Linux server. They’re growing faster than I anticipated, and it’s becoming a bit of a headache to keep them under control without losing important data.

I’ve played around with logrotate, but I’m curious about what strategies or tools you all use to manage log files effectively. Do you have any go-to methods for automating the process or ensuring that you’re not missing critical information while keeping your disk space in check?

Any tips or shared experiences would be super helpful!

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Consider implementing a centralized log management system like Graylog or ELK Stack for efficient analysis, which can help identify and reduce redundant or non-essential logging.

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The ELK Stack is an excellent tool for centralizing system logs onto one platform. Logstash can parse almost any log file and store it on ElasticSearch. Kibana provides graphs to monitor all the data, and can even send alerts. For example, you can create an alarm that sends you an email if RAM or CPU usage is abnormally high, or if you experience a DDOS attack (by parsing Nginx or Apache logs).


Agreed on a centralized logging.

I really enjoy the loki + Grafana stack. Once you understand the ‘query’ format, it’s not bad.

But I’ll be honest, once my logs go into loki and ELK, I delete them monthly.


Another con of centralized logging I forgot to mention is that you can partially delete logs. For example, you can keep all error logs but you can delete only informational or debug logs automatically. In most cases, info/debug logs are not that important, and they occupy more space than error/crit logs. Keeping logs in the log files doesn’t allow you to do that.

I would advise that you filter your logs. A tool like grep would help you to filter out unwanted logs just to focus on ones that that are really important. I believe this approach would greatly reduce the size of logs that you have to manage and you would find it easier to find important information when you need it.