rotatelogs - Piped logging program to rotate Apache logs
] [ -L linkname
] [ -p
] [ - f
] [ -t
] [ -v
] [ -e
] [ -n number-of-files
(B|K|M|G) [ offset
rotatelogs is a simple program for use in conjunction with Apache's piped
logfile feature. It supports rotation based on a time interval or maximum size
of the log.
- Causes the use of local time rather than GMT as the base
for the interval or for strftime(3) formatting with size-based
- -L linkname
- Causes a hard link to be made from the current logfile to
the specified link name. This can be used to watch the log continuously
across rotations using a command like tail -F linkname.
- -p program
- If given, rotatelogs will execute the specified program
every time a new log file is opened. The filename of the newly opened file
is passed as the first argument to the program. If executing after a
rotation, the old log file is passed as the second argument. rotatelogs
does not wait for the specified program to terminate before continuing to
operate, and will not log any error code returned on termination. The
spawned program uses the same stdin, stdout, and stderr as rotatelogs
itself, and also inherits the environment.
- Causes the logfile to be opened immediately, as soon as
rotatelogs starts, instead of waiting for the first logfile entry to be
read (for non-busy sites, there may be a substantial delay between when
the server is started and when the first request is handled, meaning that
the associated logfile does not "exist" until then, which causes
problems from some automated logging tools)
- Causes the logfile to be truncated instead of rotated. This
is useful when a log is processed in real time by a command like tail, and
there is no need for archived data. No suffix will be added to the
filename, however format strings containing '%' characters will be
- Produce verbose output on STDERR. The output contains the
result of the configuration parsing, and all file open and close
- Echo logs through to stdout. Useful when logs need to be
further processed in real time by a further tool in the chain.
- Create log file for each interval, even if empty.
- -n number-of-files
- Use a circular list of filenames without timestamps. With
-n 3, the series of log files opened would be "logfile",
"logfile.1", "logfile.2", then overwriting
"logfile". Available in 2.4.5 and later.
- The time between log file rotations in seconds. The
rotation occurs at the beginning of this interval. For example, if the
rotation time is 3600, the log file will be rotated at the beginning of
every hour; if the rotation time is 86400, the log file will be rotated
every night at midnight. (If no data is logged during an interval, no file
will be created.)
- The maximum file size in followed by exactly one of the
letters B (Bytes), K (KBytes), M (MBytes) or G (GBytes). .PP When time and
size are specified, the size must be given after the time. Rotation will
occur whenever either time or size limits are reached.
- The number of minutes offset from UTC. If omitted, zero is
assumed and UTC is used. For example, to use local time in the zone UTC -5
hours, specify a value of -300 for this argument. In most cases, -l should
be used instead of specifying an offset.
CustomLog "|bin/rotatelogs /var/log/logfile 86400" common
This creates the files /var/log/logfile.nnnn where nnnn is the system time at
which the log nominally starts (this time will always be a multiple of the
rotation time, so you can synchronize cron scripts with it). At the end of
each rotation time (here after 24 hours) a new log is started.
CustomLog "|bin/rotatelogs -l /var/log/logfile.%Y.%m.%d 86400" common
This creates the files /var/log/logfile.yyyy.mm.dd where yyyy is the year, mm is
the month, and dd is the day of the month. Logging will switch to a new file
every day at midnight, local time.
CustomLog "|bin/rotatelogs /var/log/logfile 5M" common
This configuration will rotate the logfile whenever it reaches a size of 5
ErrorLog "|bin/rotatelogs /var/log/errorlog.%Y-%m-%d-%H_%M_%S 5M"
This configuration will rotate the error logfile whenever it reaches a size of 5
megabytes, and the suffix to the logfile name will be created of the form
CustomLog "|bin/rotatelogs -t /var/log/logfile 86400" common
This creates the file /var/log/logfile, truncating the file at startup and then
truncating the file once per day. It is expected in this scenario that a
separate process (such as tail) would process the file in real time.
The following logfile format string substitutions should be supported by all
strftime(3) implementations, see the strftime(3) man page for library-specific
- • %A - full weekday name (localized)
- • %a - 3-character weekday name (localized)
- • %B - full month name (localized)
- • %b - 3-character month name (localized)
- • %c - date and time (localized)
- • %d - 2-digit day of month
- • %H - 2-digit hour (24 hour clock)
- • %I - 2-digit hour (12 hour clock)
- • %j - 3-digit day of year
- • %M - 2-digit minute
- • %m - 2-digit month
- • %p - am/pm of 12 hour clock (localized)
- • %S - 2-digit second
- • %U - 2-digit week of year (Sunday first day of
- • %W - 2-digit week of year (Monday first day of
- • %w - 1-digit weekday (Sunday first day of
- • %X - time (localized)
- • %x - date (localized)
- • %Y - 4-digit year
- • %y - 2-digit year
- • %Z - time zone name
- • %% - literal `%'