ROTATELOGS(8) rotatelogs ROTATELOGS(8)
rotatelogs - Piped logging program to rotate Apache logs
rotatelogs [ -l ] [ -f ] logfile rotationtime|filesizeM [ 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.
-l Causes the use of local time rather than GMT as the base for the interval or for
strftime(3) formatting with size-based rotation. Note that using -l in an environ-
ment which changes the GMT offset (such as for BST or DST) can lead to unpre-
-f 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). Available in version 2.2.9 and
The time between log file rotations in seconds. The rotation occurs at the begin-
ning 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 megabytes followed by the letter M to specify size rather
offset 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 off-
CustomLog "|bin/rotatelogs /var/logs/logfile 86400" common
This creates the files /var/logs/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/logs/logfile.%Y.%m.%d 86400" common
This creates the files /var/logs/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 mid-
night, local time.
CustomLog "|bin/rotatelogs /var/logs/logfile 5M" common
This configuration will rotate the logfile whenever it reaches a size of 5 megabytes.
ErrorLog "|bin/rotatelogs /var/logs/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 errorlog.YYYY-
The following logfile format string substitutions should be supported by all strftime(3)
implementations, see the strftime(3) man page for library-specific extensions.
o %A - full weekday name (localized)
o %a - 3-character weekday name (localized)
o %B - full month name (localized)
o %b - 3-character month name (localized)
o %c - date and time (localized)
o %d - 2-digit day of month
o %H - 2-digit hour (24 hour clock)
o %I - 2-digit hour (12 hour clock)
o %j - 3-digit day of year
o %M - 2-digit minute
o %m - 2-digit month
o %p - am/pm of 12 hour clock (localized)
o %S - 2-digit second
o %U - 2-digit week of year (Sunday first day of week)
o %W - 2-digit week of year (Monday first day of week)
o %w - 1-digit weekday (Sunday first day of week)
o %X - time (localized)
o %x - date (localized)
o %Y - 4-digit year
o %y - 2-digit year
o %Z - time zone name
o %% - literal `%'
Apache HTTP Server 2010-11-06 ROTATELOGS(8)