Load the Elasticsearch index templateedit

Elasticsearch uses index templates to define:

  • Settings that control the behavior of your indices. The settings include the lifecycle policy used to manage indices as they grow and age.
  • Mappings that determine how fields are analyzed. Each mapping sets the Elasticsearch datatype to use for a specific data field.

The recommended index template file for Winlogbeat is installed by the Winlogbeat packages. If you accept the default configuration in the winlogbeat.yml config file, Winlogbeat loads the composable template automatically after successfully connecting to Elasticsearch. If the template already exists, it’s not overwritten unless you configure Winlogbeat to do so.

A connection to Elasticsearch is required to load the index template. If the output is not Elasticsearch (or Elasticsearch Service), you must load the template manually.

This page shows how to change the default template loading behavior to:

For a full list of template setup options, see Elasticsearch index template.

Load your own index templateedit

To load your own composable index template, set the following options:

setup.template.name: "your_template_name"
setup.template.fields: "path/to/fields.yml"

If the template already exists, it’s not overwritten unless you configure Winlogbeat to do so.

If your template is still in the legacy format, please set setup.template.type to legacy. Please, convert your index template to the composable format, because in the future support for legacy templates is going to be removed.

Overwrite an existing index templateedit

Do not enable this option for more than one instance of Winlogbeat. If you start multiple instances at the same time, it can overload your Elasticsearch with too many template update requests.

To overwrite a template that’s already loaded into Elasticsearch, set:

setup.template.overwrite: true

Disable automatic index template loadingedit

You may want to disable automatic template loading if you’re using an output other than Elasticsearch and need to load the template manually. To disable automatic template loading, set:

setup.template.enabled: false

If you disable automatic template loading, you must load the index template manually.

Load the index template manuallyedit

To load the index template manually, run the setup command. A connection to Elasticsearch is required. If another output is enabled, you need to temporarily disable that output and enable Elasticsearch by using the -E option. The examples here assume that Logstash output is enabled. You can omit the -E flags if Elasticsearch output is already enabled.

If you are connecting to a secured Elasticsearch cluster, make sure you’ve configured credentials as described in the Quick start: installation and configuration.

If the host running Winlogbeat does not have direct connectivity to Elasticsearch, see Load the index template manually (alternate method).

To load the template:

Open a PowerShell prompt as an Administrator (right-click the PowerShell icon and select Run As Administrator).

From the PowerShell prompt, change to the directory where you installed Winlogbeat, and run:

PS > .\winlogbeat.exe setup --index-management -E output.logstash.enabled=false -E 'output.elasticsearch.hosts=["localhost:9200"]'

Force Kibana to look at newest documentsedit

If you’ve already used Winlogbeat to index data into Elasticsearch, the index may contain old documents. After you load the index template, you can delete the old documents from winlogbeat-* to force Kibana to look at the newest documents.

Use this command:

PS > Invoke-RestMethod -Method Delete "http://localhost:9200/winlogbeat-*"

This command deletes all indices that match the pattern winlogbeat-*. Before running this command, make sure you want to delete all indices that match the pattern.

Load the index template manually (alternate method)edit

If the host running Winlogbeat does not have direct connectivity to Elasticsearch, you can export the index template to a file, move it to a machine that does have connectivity, and then install the template manually.

To export the index template, run:

PS > .\winlogbeat.exe export template --es.version 7.17.21 | Out-File -Encoding UTF8 winlogbeat.template.json

To install the template, run:

PS > Invoke-RestMethod -Method Put -ContentType "application/json" -InFile winlogbeat.template.json -Uri http://localhost:9200/_index_template/winlogbeat-7.17.21