collectd Ingester#

The collectd ingester is a fully standalone collectd collection agent which can directly ship collectd samples to Gravwell. The ingester supports multiple collectors which can be configured with different tags, security controls, and plugin-to-tag overrides.


To install the Debian package, make sure the Gravwell Debian repository is configured as described in the quickstart. Then run the following command as root:

apt update && apt install gravwell-collectd

To install the Redhat package, make sure the Gravwell Redhat repository is configured as described in the quickstart. Then run the following command as root:

yum install gravwell-collectd

To install via the standalone shell installer, download the installer from the downloads page, then run the following command as root, replacing X.X.X with the appropriate version:


You may be prompted for additional configuration during the installation.

The Docker image is available on Dockerhub.

Basic Configuration#

The collectd ingester uses the unified global configuration block described in the ingester section. Like most other Gravwell ingesters, the collectd ingester supports multiple upstream indexers, TLS, cleartext, and named pipe connections, a local cache, and local logging.

The configuration file is at /opt/gravwell/etc/collectd.conf. The ingester will also read configuration snippets from its configuration overlay directory (/opt/gravwell/etc/collectd.conf.d).

Collector Examples#

[Collector "default"]

[Collector "example"]
	Bind-String= #default is "


If you’re using the Gravwell Debian repository, installation is just a single apt command:

apt-get install gravwell-collectd

Otherwise, download the installer from the Downloads page. Using a terminal on the Gravwell server, issue the following command as a superuser (e.g. via the sudo command) to install the ingester:

root@gravserver ~ # bash

If the Gravwell services are present on the same machine, the installation script will automatically extract and configure the Ingest-Auth parameter and set it appropriately. However, if your ingester is not resident on the same machine as a pre-existing Gravwell backend, the installer will prompt for the authentication token and the IP address of the Gravwell indexer. You can set these values during installation or leave them blank and modify the configuration file in /opt/gravwell/etc/collectd.conf manually.


The collectd ingester relies on the same Global configuration system as all other ingesters. The Global section is used for defining indexer connections, authentication, and local cache controls.

Collector configuration blocks are used to define listening collectors which can accept collectd samples. Each collector configuration can have a unique Security-Level, authentication, tag, source override, network bind, and tag overrides. Using multiple collector configurations, a single collectd ingester can listen on multiple interfaces and apply unique tags to collectd samples coming in from multiple network enclaves.

By default the collectd ingester reads a configuration file located at /opt/gravwell/etc/collectd.conf.

Example Configuration#

	Ingest-Secret = SuperSecretKey
	Connection-Timeout = 0

[Collector "default"]

[Collector "localhost"]

Collector Configuration Options#

Each Collector block must contain a unique name and non-overlapping Bind-Strings. You cannot have multiple Collectors that are bound to the same interface on the same port.


Bind-String controls the address and port which the Collector uses to listen for incoming collectd samples. A valid Bind-String must contain either an IPv4 or IPv6 address and a port. To listen on all interfaces use the “” wildcard address.

Example Bind-String#


Tag-Name defines the tag that collectd samples will be assigned unless a Tag-Plugin-Override applies.


The Source-Override directive is used to override the source value applied to entries when they are sent to Gravwell. By default the ingester applies the Source of the ingester, but it may be desirable to apply a specific source value to a Collector block in order to apply segmentation or filtering at search time. A Source-Override is any valid IPv4 or IPv6 address.

Example Source-Override#



The Security-Level directive controls how the Collector authenticates collectd packets. Available options are: encrypt, sign, none. By default a Collector uses the “encrypt” Security-Level and requires that both a User and Password are specified. If “none” is used, no User or Password is required.

Example Security-Level#

Security-Level = sign
Security-Level = SIGN

User and Password#

When the Security-Level is set as “sign” or “encrypt” a username and password must be provided that match the values set in endpoints. The default values are “user” and “secret” to match the default values shipped with collectd. These values should be changed when collectd data might contain sensitive information.

User and Password Examples#
User = "username with spaces in it"
Password = "Password with spaces and other characters @$@#@()*$#W)("


The default collectd encoder is JSON, but a simple text encoder is also available. Options are “JSON” or “text”

An example entry using the JSON encoder:


Tag Plugin Overrides#

Each Collector block supports N number of Tag-Plugin-Override declarations which are used to apply a unique tag to a collectd sample based on the plugin that generated it. Tag-Plugin-Overrides can be useful when you want to store data coming from different plugins in different wells and apply different ageout rules. For example, it may be valuable to store collectd records about disk usage for 9 months, but CPU usage records can expire out at 14 days. The Tag-Plugin-Override system makes this easy.

The Tag-Plugin-Override format is comprised of two strings separated by the “:” character. The string on the left represents the name of the plugin and the string on the right represents the name of the desired tag. All the usual rules about tags apply. A single plugin cannot be mapped to multiple tags, but multiple plugins CAN be mapped to the same tag.

Example Tag Plugin Overrides#

Tag-Plugin-Override=cpu:collectdcpu # Map CPU plugin data to the "collectdcpu" tag.
Tag-Plugin-Override=memory:memstats # Map the memory plugin data to the "memstats" tag.
Tag-Plugin-Override= df : diskdata  # Map the df plugin data to the "diskdata" tag.
Tag-Plugin-Override = disk : diskdata  # Map the disk plugin data to the "diskdata" tag.