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(also system logging protocol)

Syslog definition

Syslog, short for system logging protocol, is a standard for sending and receiving messages in the form of logs on a network. It allows different devices and applications to centralize the logs in a single location for easier management, review, and troubleshooting.

See also: DNS server, event log, log, log file, VPN firewall

Syslog examples

  • Network devices: Routers, switches, and firewalls use syslog to report network activities and incidents, making it easier to monitor network performance and identify potential issues.
  • Application servers: Web, mail, and database servers use syslog to log application activities and errors, providing a valuable resource for troubleshooting and performance analysis.

Advantages and disadvantages of syslog


  • Centralization: Syslog allows for centralized collection and analysis of log data, providing a broad overview of network or system activity.
  • Compatibility: It's a universal standard used by many different types of devices and applications, making it versatile.


  • Security: Syslog data is often transmitted unencrypted, making it susceptible to eavesdropping. The use of secure protocols like syslog over SSL/TLS can mitigate this issue.
  • Overhead: The continuous transmission of log data can consume network resources.

Using syslog

  • Consider using a syslog server that supports secure transmission protocols to ensure the privacy and integrity of your log data.
  • Set up meaningful and efficient filtering to avoid being overwhelmed by large volumes of log data.