Working with Logstash Modules


Working with Logstash Modulesedit

Logstash modules provide a quick, end-to-end solution for ingesting data and visualizing it with purpose-built dashboards.

Each module comes pre-packaged with Logstash configurations, Kibana dashboards, and other meta files that make it easier for you to set up the Elastic Stack for specific use cases or data sources.

You can think of modules as providing three essential functions that make it easier for you to get started. When you run a module, it will:

  1. Create the Elasticsearch index.
  2. Set up the Kibana dashboards, including the index pattern, searches, and visualizations required to visualize your data in Kibana.
  3. Run the Logstash pipeline with the configurations required to read and parse the data.
Logstash modules overview

Running modulesedit

To run a module and set up dashboards, you specify the following options:

bin/logstash --modules MODULE_NAME --setup [-M "CONFIG_SETTING=VALUE"]


  • --modules runs the Logstash module specified by MODULE_NAME.
  • -M "CONFIG_SETTING=VALUE" is optional and overrides the specified configuration setting. You can specify multiple overrides. Each override must start with -M. See Specify module settings at the command line for more info.
  • --setup creates an index pattern in Elasticsearch and imports Kibana dashboards and visualizations. Running --setup is a one-time setup step. Omit this option for subsequent runs of the module to avoid overwriting existing Kibana dashboards.

For example, the following command runs the Netflow module with the default settings, and sets up the netflow index pattern and dashboards:

bin/logstash --modules netflow --setup

The following command runs the Netflow module and overrides the Elasticsearch host setting. Here it’s assumed that you’ve already run the setup step.

bin/logstash --modules netflow -M ""

Configuring modulesedit

To configure a module, you can either specify configuration settings in the logstash.yml settings file, or use command-line overrides to specify settings at the command line.

Specify module settings in logstash.ymledit

To specify module settings in the logstash.yml settings file file, you add a module definition to the modules array. Each module definition begins with a dash (-) and is followed by name: module_name then a series of name/value pairs that specify module settings. For example:

- name: netflow
  var.elasticsearch.hosts: ""
  var.elasticsearch.username: "foo"
  var.elasticsearch.password: "password" ""
  var.kibana.username: "foo"
  var.kibana.password: "password"
  var.input.tcp.port: 5606

For a list of available module settings, see the documentation for the module.

Specify module settings at the command lineedit

You can override module settings by specifying one or more configuration overrides when you start Logstash. To specify an override, you use the -M command line option:


Notice that the fully-qualified setting name includes the module name.

You can specify multiple overrides. Each override must start with -M.

The following command runs the Netflow module and overrides both the Elasticsearch host setting and the udp.port setting:

bin/logstash --modules netflow -M "netflow.var.input.udp.port=3555" -M ""

Any settings defined in the command line are ephemeral and will not persist across subsequent runs of Logstash. If you want to persist a configuration, you need to set it in the logstash.yml settings file.

Settings that you specify at the command line are merged with any settings specified in the logstash.yml file. If an option is set in both places, the value specified at the command line takes precedence.