How does filebeat react to files dumped at once


I am trying to understand how filebeat reacts to files that are dumped at once every x hours (versus log files that are fed on the fly, line by line)

For instance, I have a file /log/audit.dump that is recreated from scracth by a script every day at midnight with new content. This is a simple csv file with a few thousands lines.

I have witnessed several behaviors from filebeat :

  • The new generated file is completely read and the new lines are sent to logstash (expected behavior)
  • The file starts at the current offset and the first line sent to logstash is truncated
  • The file is not read at all as if filebeat had not detected the file change.

Here is my filebeat prospector conf :

       - /log/audit.dump

      input_type: log
      document_type: audit
      exclude_lines: ["^ACTION"]

Could you please shed some light on how one is supposed to approach this kind of situation ?
Am I missing something in the way I am configuring filebeat ?

Thanks in advance for your precious help.

(ruflin) #2

I think the reason behind the behaviour is as following:

I assume that not a new file is created but the existing file (with the same inode) is reused and the same content is put into it. This has the following consequences:

  • Because the inode stays the same, filebeat assumes it is still the same file.
  • If the new content is shorter then the content before, it assumes that something strange happened and starts reading from the beginning (your expected behaviour)
  • If the file is longer the the previous one, it reads the lines from the old offset, which could start in the middle of a line
  • If the file has the same length, nothing happens.

So the behaviour is somehow expected. To solve this issue, I recommend you to rename the old file, create the new file and dump the content, remove the old file. The reason I do not recommend delete and create directly, as this could lead to inode reuse:


@ruffin Thanks for your quick answer, I will ask the dev to try and modify the way they create the file.
Indeed, I confirm the inode remains the same and that it matches the one fromt he registry file.
I will keep you posted once the modification has been performed.


(system) #4