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Log exporter send logs in UTC time zone to syslog server

Hi All,


We configured log exporter on our MLM and send logs of all CLM to syslog server. On checking on syslog server we found out logs are coming in UTC Time zone. I gone through sk133472 and not able to understand the last two lines.


"The CP Log Server can send logs to syslog in different timezone, and it needs to be UTC so target Log Server can convert it to the local timezone.

This is also how Splunk and other SIEM vendors behave."

Is this means we need to send logs through log exporter in UTC time zone

We are using IST time zone. 


Please guide.

4 Replies

What it means is that Log Exporter will always send logs in UTC format as this is what other vendors are expecting to receive it in.
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Is there any way we can change the timezone and syslog get logs in timezone we are using?

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While @Dan_Zada can confirm, I believe this is not currently possible and would require an RFE.
The SK indicates Log Exporter sending syslogs in UTC is expected, RFC-compliant behavior.

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Old post, but could be useful for people who haven't found a way to change the time stamps from log exporter.

I had to deal with the same issue recently where logs are shipped in UTC and it's always a pain to sort through the logs and having to convert timestamp manually. 

I've found a solution to this issue by modifying syslog format definitions.

Go to $EXPORTERDIR/targets/$target_syslog_server/conf

Make a backup of current SyslogFormatDefinition.xml 

open file in text editor and find a section that starts with <!-- TIMESTAMP-->, should look something like below:

 <!-- TIMESTAMP-->                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              

you can delete this entire section from the config file and restart your log exporter process

# cp_log_export restart

This will get rid of the UTC time stamps and will only include timestamp that are generated by your gateways in your respective timezone. 

It's also good idea to modify the header_format to exclude fields that are not required in the logs as your syslog SEIM could be addition additional header information such as host names and etc.

The section looks like the following 

<!-- Log Header will be generated according this format string. Every (header_format_replacment_string val) "{}" will be replaced with header value -->                                                                                                                
<header_format>{}{} {} {} {} {} {} </header_format>

Here's what it looks like before the modifications (I'm using rsyslog as my SEIM) timestamp in UTC: 

<134>1 2021-02-19T17:03:00Z RH-SMS-02 CheckPoint 17769 - [action:"Accept"; flags:"411908"; ifdir:"inbound"; ifname:"eth2"; logid:"0"; loguid:"{0x602fef44,0x0,0x49bcb9cb,0xd5bff1ea}"; origin:""; originsicname:"CN=FW-5100-S01-S2S-MGMT,O=RH-SMS-01..y8sqgb"; sequen
cenum:"2"; time:"1613754180"; version:"5"; __policy_id_tag:"product=VPN-1 & FireWall-1[db_tag={64437249-B834-954A-BD81-B1FC6A733BB8};mgmt=RH-SMS-02;date=1613751112;policy_name=PolicyPackage-TR1-IMP\]"; dst:""; inzone:"Internal"; layer_name:"TR1"; layer_uuid:"3b06
02c8-80c9-44df-9385-87b7456bc8d1"; match_id:"0"; parent_rule:"0"; rule_action:"Accept"; rule_name:"Implied Rule "; rule_uid:"0E3B6801-8AB0-4b1e-A317-8BE33055FB43"; outzone:"Internal"; product:"VPN-1 & FireWall-1"; proto:"6"; s_port:"60053"; security_inzone:"Interface_s-m
gmt"; service:"18192"; service_id:"CPD_amon"; src:""; ]

Time stamp in EST after removing TIMESTAMP section

<134>1 2021-02-19T12:04:01.219674-05:00 RH-SMS-02 CheckPoint - - -  18036 - {} {} [action:"Accept"; flags:"411908"; ifdir:"inbound"; ifname:"eth2"; logid:"0"; loguid:"{0x602fef7e,0x0,0xfb64ed58,0xfb2725e8}"; origin:""; originsicname:"CN=FW-5100-S01-S2S-MGMT,O=R
H-SMS-01..y8sqgb"; sequencenum:"3"; time:"1613754238"; version:"5"; __policy_id_tag:"product=VPN-1 & FireWall-1[db_tag={64437249-B834-954A-BD81-B1FC6A733BB8};mgmt=RH-SMS-02;date=1613751112;policy_name=PolicyPackage-TR1-IMP\]"; dst:""; inzone:"Internal"; layer_nam
e:"TR1"; layer_uuid:"3b0602c8-80c9-44df-9385-87b7456bc8d1"; match_id:"0"; parent_rule:"0"; rule_action:"Accept"; rule_name:"Implied Rule "; rule_uid:"0E3B6801-8AB0-4b1e-A317-8BE33055FB43"; outzone:"Internal"; product:"VPN-1 & FireWall-1"; proto:"6"; s_port:"59331"; secur
ity_inzone:"Interface_s-mgmt"; service:"18192"; service_id:"CPD_amon"; src:""; ]

as you can see  above I have some additional field now - {} {} which are just values that no longer exist from log exporter, so that's where you have to modify your header_format section in order to get rid of the extra fields in the logs. So I changed mine from 

<header_format>{}{} {} {} {} {} {} </header_format>


<header_format>{}{} {} {} </header_format>

and this is the result:

<134>1 2021-02-19T12:11:36.007271-05:00 RH-SMS-02 CheckPoint - - -  19916 [action:"Encrypt"; flags:"411908"; ifdir:"inbound"; ifname:"bond1"; logid:"0"; loguid:"{0x602ff158,0x0,0x1b1a89ba,0xd17d4c8a}"; origin:""; originsicname:"CN=FW-5100-D01-S2S-MGMT,O=RH-SMS-
01..y8sqgb"; sequencenum:"1"; time:"1613754712"; version:"5"; __policy_id_tag:"product=VPN-1 & FireWall-1[db_tag={0A65B690-0B26-A845-9F63-78237EB9CBAF};mgmt=RH-SMS-02;date=1613670734;policy_name=PolicyPackage-DL1\]"; community:"TR1-DL1"; dst:""; fw_subproduct:"
VPN-1"; inzone:"External"; layer_name:"DL1-SRX_policy_Opt Network"; layer_uuid:"b69886f5-1979-4e4f-8d62-6973f494244e"; match_id:"14"; parent_rule:"0"; rule_action:"Accept"; rule_name:"Inter-Cluster-D Traffic"; rule_uid:"64d66cc5-63d5-4a0c-8cc1-97486e3f3e43"; methods::"ES
P: AES-128 + SHA1 + PFS (group 5)"; outzone:"External"; peer_gateway:""; product:"VPN-1 & FireWall-1"; proto:"6"; s_port:"48158"; scheme::"IKE"; security_inzone:"NAME_COLLISION_RESOLVED_Interface_d-InterCluster"; service:"4369"; service_id:"NAME_COLLISION_RESOLVE
D_2_TCP_4369"; src:""; vpn_feature_name:"VPN"; ]

still have some additional - - - characters, but at least I have my timestamps in EST and looks a bit better than having extra fields. You can always play around with header_format to get the results you want.

Hope that helps! 


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