Docker log driver plugins

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Logging driver plugins

This document describes logging driver plugins for Docker.

Logging drivers enables users to forward container logs to another service for processing. Docker includes several logging drivers as built-ins, however can never hope to support all use-cases with built-in drivers. Plugins allow Docker to support a wide range of logging services without requiring to embed client libraries for these services in the main Docker codebase. See the plugin documentation for more information.

Create a logging plugin

The main interface for logging plugins uses the same JSON+HTTP RPC protocol used by other plugin types. See the example plugin for a reference implementation of a logging plugin. The example wraps the built-in jsonfilelog log driver.

LogDriver protocol

Logging plugins must register as a LogDriver during plugin activation. Once activated users can specify the plugin as a log driver.

There are two HTTP endpoints that logging plugins must implement:

/LogDriver.StartLogging

Signals to the plugin that a container is starting that the plugin should start receiving logs for.

Logs will be streamed over the defined file in the request. On Linux this file is a FIFO. Logging plugins are not currently supported on Windows.

Request:

{
		"File": "/path/to/file/stream",
		"Info": {
			"ContainerID": "123456"
		}
}

File is the path to the log stream that needs to be consumed. Each call to StartLogging should provide a different file path, even if it’s a container that the plugin has already received logs for prior. The file is created by docker with a randomly generated name.

Info is details about the container that’s being logged. This is fairly free-form, but is defined by the following struct definition:

type Info struct {
	Config              map[string]string
	ContainerID         string
	ContainerName       string
	ContainerEntrypoint string
	ContainerArgs       []string
	ContainerImageID    string
	ContainerImageName  string
	ContainerCreated    time.Time
	ContainerEnv        []string
	ContainerLabels     map[string]string
	LogPath             string
	DaemonName          string
}

ContainerID will always be supplied with this struct, but other fields may be empty or missing.

Response

{
	"Err": ""
}

If an error occurred during this request, add an error message to the Err field in the response. If no error then you can either send an empty response ({}) or an empty value for the Err field.

The driver should at this point be consuming log messages from the passed in file. If messages are unconsumed, it may cause the container to block while trying to write to its stdio streams.

Log stream messages are encoded as protocol buffers. The protobuf definitions are in the docker repository.

Since protocol buffers are not self-delimited you must decode them from the stream using the following stream format:

[size][message]

Where size is a 4-byte big endian binary encoded uint32. size in this case defines the size of the next message. message is the actual log entry.

A reference golang implementation of a stream encoder/decoder can be found here

/LogDriver.StopLogging

Signals to the plugin to stop collecting logs from the defined file. Once a response is received, the file will be removed by Docker. You must make sure to collect all logs on the stream before responding to this request or risk losing log data.

Requests on this endpoint does not mean that the container has been removed only that it has stopped.

Request:

{
		"File": "/path/to/file/stream"
}

Response:

{
	"Err": ""
}

If an error occurred during this request, add an error message to the Err field in the response. If no error then you can either send an empty response ({}) or an empty value for the Err field.

Optional endpoints

Logging plugins can implement two extra logging endpoints:

/LogDriver.Capabilities

Defines the capabilities of the log driver. You must implement this endpoint for Docker to be able to take advantage of any of the defined capabilities.

Request:

{}

Response:

{
	"ReadLogs": true
}

Supported capabilities:

  • ReadLogs - this tells Docker that the plugin is capable of reading back logs to clients. Plugins that report that they support ReadLogs must implement the /LogDriver.ReadLogs endpoint

/LogDriver.ReadLogs

Reads back logs to the client. This is used when docker logs <container> is called.

In order for Docker to use this endpoint, the plugin must specify as much when /LogDriver.Capabilities is called.

Request:

{
	"ReadConfig": {},
	"Info": {
		"ContainerID": "123456"
	}
}

ReadConfig is the list of options for reading, it is defined with the following golang struct:

type ReadConfig struct {
	Since  time.Time
	Tail   int
	Follow bool
}
  • Since defines the oldest log that should be sent.
  • Tail defines the number of lines to read (e.g. like the command tail -n 10)
  • Follow signals that the client wants to stay attached to receive new log messages as they come in once the existing logs have been read.

Info is the same type defined in /LogDriver.StartLogging. It should be used to determine what set of logs to read.

Response:


The response should be the encoded log message using the same format as the messages that the plugin consumed from Docker.

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