Use this documentation with care! It describes
the outdated version 7, which was actively
developed around 2014 and is considered dead by the
This documentation reflects the latest update of the v7-stable branch. It describes the 7.6.8 version, which was never released. As such, it contains some content that does not apply to any released version.
To obtain the doc that properly matches your installed v7 version, obtain the doc set from your distro. Each version of rsyslog contained the version that exactly matches it.
As general advise, it is strongly suggested to upgrade to the current version supported by the rsyslog project. The current version can always be found on the right-hand side info box on the rsyslog web site.
Note that there is only limited rsyslog community support available for the outdated v7 version (officially we do not support it at all, but we usually are able to answer simple questions). If you need to stick with v7, it probably is best to ask your distribution for support.
ommail: Mail Output Module¶
Module Name: ommail
**Available since: ** 3.17.0
Author:Rainer Gerhards <firstname.lastname@example.org>
This module supports sending syslog messages via mail. Each syslog message is sent via its own mail. Obviously, you will want to apply rigorous filtering, otherwise your mailbox (and mail server) will be heavily spammed. The ommail plugin is primarily meant for alerting users. As such, it is assume that mails will only be sent in an extremely limited number of cases.
Please note that ommail is especially well-suited to work in tandem with imfile to watch files for the occurence of specific things to be alerted on. So its scope is far broader than forwarding syslog messages to mail recipients.
Ommail uses two templates, one for the mail body and one for the subject line. If neither is provided, a quite meaningless subject line is used and the mail body will be a syslog message just as if it were written to a file. It is expected that the users customizes both messages. In an effort to support cell phones (including SMS gateways), there is an option to turn off the body part at all. This is considered to be useful to send a short alert to a pager-like device. It is highly recommended to use the “$ActionExecOnlyOnceEveryInterval <seconds>” directive to limit the amount of mails that potentially be generated. With it, mails are sent at most in a <seconds> interval. This may be your life safer. And remember that an hour has 3,600 seconds, so if you would like to receive mails at most once every two hours, include a “$ActionExecOnlyOnceEveryInterval 7200” immediately before the ommail action. Messages sent more frequently are simpy discarded. Please note that once you used $ACtionExecOnlyOnceEveryInterval, this setting is preserved for all other actions as well. As such, it would also apply to actions writing to e.g. files and databases after the directive is given. This is usually not desired. To prevent it, reset the value to zero after the mail action has been defined.
Name or IP address of the SMTP server to be used. Must currently be set. The default is 127.0.0.1, the SMTP server on the local machine. Obviously it is not good to expect one to be present on each machine, so this value should be specified.
Port number or name of the SMTP port to be used. The default is 25, the standard SMTP port.
The email address used as the senders address. There is no default.
The recipient email addresses. There is no default. To specify multiple recpients, repeat this directive as often as needed. Note: This directive must be specified for each new action and is automatically reset. [Multiple recipients are supported for 3.21.2 and above.]
The name of the template to be used as the mail subject. If this is not specified, a more or less meaningless mail subject is generated (we don’t tell you the exact text because that can change - if you want to have something specific, configure it!).
Setting this to “off” permits to exclude the actual message body. This may be useful for pager-like devices or cell phone SMS messages. The default is “on”, which is appropriate for allmost all cases. Turn it off only if you know exactly what you do!
The current ommail implementation supports SMTP-direct mode only. In that mode, the plugin talks to the mail server via SMTP protocol. No other process is involved. This mode offers best reliability as it is not depending on any external entity except the mail server. Mail server downtime is acceptable if the action is put onto its own action queue, so that it may wait for the SMTP server to come back online. However, the module implements only the bare SMTP essentials. Most importantly, it does not provide any authentication capabilities. So your mail server must be configured to accept incoming mail from ommail without any authentication needs (this may be change in the future as need arises, but you may also be referred to sendmail-mode).
In theory, ommail should also offer a mode where it uses the sendmail utility to send its mail (sendmail-mode). This is somewhat less reliable (because we depend on an entity we do not have close control over - sendmail). It also requires dramatically more system ressources, as we need to load the external process (but that should be no problem given the expected infrequent number of calls into this plugin). The big advantage of sendmail mode is that it supports all the bells and whistles of a full-blown SMTP implementation and may even work for local delivery without a SMTP server being present. Sendmail mode will be implemented as need arises. So if you need it, please drop us a line (I nobody does, sendmail mode will probably never be implemented).
The following sample alerts the operator if the string “hard disk fatal failure” is present inside a syslog message. The mail server at mail.example.net is used and the subject shall be “disk problem on <hostname>”. Note how \r\n is included inside the body text to create line breaks. A message is sent at most once every 6 hours, any other messages are silently discarded (or, to be precise, not being forwarded - they are still being processed by the rest of the configuration file).
$ModLoad ommail $ActionMailSMTPServer mail.example.net $ActionMailFrom email@example.com $ActionMailTo firstname.lastname@example.org $template mailSubject,"disk problem on %hostname%" $template mailBody,"RSYSLOG Alert\\r\\nmsg='%msg%'" $ActionMailSubject mailSubject # make sure we receive a mail only once in six # hours (21,600 seconds ;)) $ActionExecOnlyOnceEveryInterval 21600 # the if ... then ... mailBody must be on one line! if $msg contains 'hard disk fatal failure' then :ommail:;mailBody # re-set interval so that other actions are not affected $ActionExecOnlyOnceEveryInterval 0
The sample below is the same, but sends mail to two recipients:
$ModLoad ommail $ActionMailSMTPServer mail.example.net $ActionMailFrom email@example.com $ActionMailTo firstname.lastname@example.org $ActionMailTo email@example.com $template mailSubject,"disk problem on %hostname%" $template mailBody,"RSYSLOG Alert\\r\\nmsg='%msg%'" $ActionMailSubject mailSubject # make sure we receive a mail only once in six # hours (21,600 seconds ;)) $ActionExecOnlyOnceEveryInterval 21600 # the if ... then ... mailBody mus be on one line! if $msg contains 'hard disk fatal failure' then :ommail:;mailBody # re-set interval so that other actions are not affected $ActionExecOnlyOnceEveryInterval 0
A more advanced example plus a discussion on using the email feature inside a reliable system can be found in Rainer’s blogpost “Why is native email capability an advantage for a syslogd?”