Click here to close now.


Linux Containers Authors: XebiaLabs Blog, Pat Romanski, Elizabeth White, Liz McMillan, Mike Kavis

Related Topics: @CloudExpo, Java IoT, Linux Containers, @BigDataExpo

@CloudExpo: Article

Monitoring and Analyzing AWS CloudTrail Data

Monitoring and Analyzing AWS CloudTrail data from multiple AWS regions

We recently released AWS CloudTrail integration with Logentries - and not surprisingly we've seen a significant uptick in adoption as one of our most popular integrations. My job as director of customer success is to make things as simple for our customers as possible. One question that consistently pops up, is how to collect AWS CloudTrail logs from multiple AWS regions.

We follow Amazon's best practices when it comes to integrating with, and receiving information from, CloudTrail. In short, this works as follows:

  • When configuring CloudTrail, it will write events to a S3 bucket.
  • You can configure Cloudtrail to send notifications to an Amazon SNS topic whenever new log events are recorded.
  • You can get updates sent to an Amazon Simple Queue Service (Amazon SQS) queue, which enables you to handle these notifications programmatically.
  • To configure Logentries to consume your Cloudtrail logs, simply add the URL of the SQS queue to the Logentries/Cloudtrail setup page.

Logentries speaks directly to the SQS queue inside of your AWS account, so an obvious question that presents itself is: If I'm running in multiple AWS regions, how do I get Logentries to pull from all of the regions?

The simple answer: you don't. Make AWS do the work for you!

Following the steps outlined below, you'll be able to monitor and analyze CloudTrail logs from any number of AWS regions all within one Logentries account.

Create an S3 Bucket
If you're new to the CloudTrail setup, the first requirement of CloudTrail logging is that the logs must go "somewhere." In AWS, this somewhere happens to be a S3 bucket which you should create. Simply navigate to the S3 service and select ‘Create Bucket'. By default, all permissions required are given to the bucket - i.e. there is no extra permissions/configuration necessary to configure CloudTrail logging with Logentries.
Screen Shot 2014-08-19 at 12.55.03 PM

Create an SQS Queue in a Primary Region
Next up, we need to create an SQS Queue to allow Logentries to consume your CloudTrail data. Create a new Queue and provide a ‘Queue Name' - default options are fine.

Add permissions to the SQS Queue
Once the queue has been created, the correct permissions must be applied. When adding permissions to the SQS queue, you need to add your full account number/name (officially called the AWS User ARN).

To get the User ARN navigate to the IAM Service, select the user that you want to utilize and click ‘Summary'. When the user is created within the IAM section, make sure that the user has at least ‘Read-Only' access - so that the user has the relevant permissions to read the bucket. The string you need is available under User ARN in the ‘Summary' section and follows this format:


Next add ‘Receive', ‘Send', and ‘Delete' Actions to the SQS Queue(see below):
Enable CloudTrail in any region, and publish to an SNS topic

Once the above three steps have been complete, it's time to enable CloudTrail in the relevant regions. Navigate to the CloudTrail Service in your AWS Console and turn on CloudTrail. Do not create a new S3 bucket, but instead select the S3 Bucket created in step one above from the drop down menu. Once you've done this, click the Advanced link. For the first region you enable CloudTrail for, remember to include Global Services under Advanced options - this record API calls from any global AWS services such as IAM or AWS STS. Make sure that "SNS Notification for every log file delivery" is checked, and finally, specify a SNS Topic to publish to. A new SNS topic name should be given - and will be created by CloudTrail.

Follow these above steps for each region that you want to collect CloudTrail logs from. NOTE: when adding subsequent regions you will want to exclude Global Services to avoid duplicate log events being recorded for your Global Services.

Screen Shot 2014-08-19 at 2.48.02 PM
Subscribe the SQS Queue to the multiple SNS topics
Once each region has been setup, the last step in AWS is to subscribe your SQS Queue to each newly created SNS topic. Navigate to the SQS Service in your AWS Console and highlight the queue created in step 2 above. Under the ‘Queue Actions' menu at the top select ‘Subscribe Queue to SNS Topic'. Use the ‘Topic Region' drop down to select the region and the ‘Choose a Topic' drop down to select the topic created in the previous step. Hit the ‘Subscribe' button and wait for the confirmation that the queue has subscribed to that topic.

After selecting subscribe make sure to copy the SQS URL from the ‘Details' section on the page.

Setup Logentries to Pull data from the SQS Queue
Login to your Logentries account and navigate to your AWS settings area (My Account -> AWS). Select enable CloudTrail, supply your IAM access key, secret key, and SQS URL that you have copied above. Hit Save! Note: your IAM access key and secret key are made available to your when you create a new IAM user and should be stored safely.

Log Data from CloudTrail will begin to stream in within approximately 15 minutes.

Sit back and let Logentries do it's magic!
Visit our CloudTrail documentation to see some of the other cool things you can do - in particular we provide out of the box tags and alerts for important CloudTrail events. Have questions or ideas how we can make our CloudTrail integration better? Reach out to me directly at [email protected].


More Stories By Trevor Parsons

Trevor Parsons is Chief Scientist and Co-founder of Logentries. Trevor has over 10 years experience in enterprise software and, in particular, has specialized in developing enterprise monitoring and performance tools for distributed systems. He is also a research fellow at the Performance Engineering Lab Research Group and was formerly a Scientist at the IBM Center for Advanced Studies. Trevor holds a PhD from University College Dublin, Ireland.

@ThingsExpo Stories
In his session at @ThingsExpo, Tony Shan, Chief Architect at CTS, will explore the synergy of Big Data and IoT. First he will take a closer look at the Internet of Things and Big Data individually, in terms of what, which, why, where, when, who, how and how much. Then he will explore the relationship between IoT and Big Data. Specifically, he will drill down to how the 4Vs aspects intersect with IoT: Volume, Variety, Velocity and Value. In turn, Tony will analyze how the key components of IoT influence Big Data: Device, Connectivity, Context, and Intelligence. He will dive deep to the matrix...
When it comes to IoT in the enterprise, namely the commercial building and hospitality markets, a benefit not getting the attention it deserves is energy efficiency, and IoT’s direct impact on a cleaner, greener environment when installed in smart buildings. Until now clean technology was offered piecemeal and led with point solutions that require significant systems integration to orchestrate and deploy. There didn't exist a 'top down' approach that can manage and monitor the way a Smart Building actually breathes - immediately flagging overheating in a closet or over cooling in unoccupied ho...
Scott Guthrie's keynote presentation "Journey to the intelligent cloud" is a must view video. This is from AzureCon 2015, September 29, 2015 I have reproduced some screen shots in case you are unable to view this long video for one reason or another. One of the highlights is 3 datacenters coming on line in India.
SYS-CON Events announced today that ProfitBricks, the provider of painless cloud infrastructure, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 17th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on November 3–5, 2015, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. ProfitBricks is the IaaS provider that offers a painless cloud experience for all IT users, with no learning curve. ProfitBricks boasts flexible cloud servers and networking, an integrated Data Center Designer tool for visual control over the cloud and the best price/performance value available. ProfitBricks was named one of the coolest Clo...
“The Internet of Things transforms the way organizations leverage machine data and gain insights from it,” noted Splunk’s CTO Snehal Antani, as Splunk announced accelerated momentum in Industrial Data and the IoT. The trend is driven by Splunk’s continued investment in its products and partner ecosystem as well as the creativity of customers and the flexibility to deploy Splunk IoT solutions as software, cloud services or in a hybrid environment. Customers are using Splunk® solutions to collect and correlate data from control systems, sensors, mobile devices and IT systems for a variety of Ind...
You have your devices and your data, but what about the rest of your Internet of Things story? Two popular classes of technologies that nicely handle the Big Data analytics for Internet of Things are Apache Hadoop and NoSQL. Hadoop is designed for parallelizing analytical work across many servers and is ideal for the massive data volumes you create with IoT devices. NoSQL databases such as Apache HBase are ideal for storing and retrieving IoT data as “time series data.”
Clearly the way forward is to move to cloud be it bare metal, VMs or containers. One aspect of the current public clouds that is slowing this cloud migration is cloud lock-in. Every cloud vendor is trying to make it very difficult to move out once a customer has chosen their cloud. In his session at 17th Cloud Expo, Naveen Nimmu, CEO of Clouber, Inc., will advocate that making the inter-cloud migration as simple as changing airlines would help the entire industry to quickly adopt the cloud without worrying about any lock-in fears. In fact by having standard APIs for IaaS would help PaaS expl...
Organizations already struggle with the simple collection of data resulting from the proliferation of IoT, lacking the right infrastructure to manage it. They can't only rely on the cloud to collect and utilize this data because many applications still require dedicated infrastructure for security, redundancy, performance, etc. In his session at 17th Cloud Expo, Emil Sayegh, CEO of Codero Hosting, will discuss how in order to resolve the inherent issues, companies need to combine dedicated and cloud solutions through hybrid hosting – a sustainable solution for the data required to manage I...
Mobile messaging has been a popular communication channel for more than 20 years. Finnish engineer Matti Makkonen invented the idea for SMS (Short Message Service) in 1984, making his vision a reality on December 3, 1992 by sending the first message ("Happy Christmas") from a PC to a cell phone. Since then, the technology has evolved immensely, from both a technology standpoint, and in our everyday uses for it. Originally used for person-to-person (P2P) communication, i.e., Sally sends a text message to Betty – mobile messaging now offers tremendous value to businesses for customer and empl...
Apps and devices shouldn't stop working when there's limited or no network connectivity. Learn how to bring data stored in a cloud database to the edge of the network (and back again) whenever an Internet connection is available. In his session at 17th Cloud Expo, Bradley Holt, Developer Advocate at IBM Cloud Data Services, will demonstrate techniques for replicating cloud databases with devices in order to build offline-first mobile or Internet of Things (IoT) apps that can provide a better, faster user experience, both offline and online. The focus of this talk will be on IBM Cloudant, Apa...
As more and more data is generated from a variety of connected devices, the need to get insights from this data and predict future behavior and trends is increasingly essential for businesses. Real-time stream processing is needed in a variety of different industries such as Manufacturing, Oil and Gas, Automobile, Finance, Online Retail, Smart Grids, and Healthcare. Azure Stream Analytics is a fully managed distributed stream computation service that provides low latency, scalable processing of streaming data in the cloud with an enterprise grade SLA. It features built-in integration with Azur...
SYS-CON Events announced today that HPM Networks will exhibit at the 17th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on November 3–5, 2015, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. For 20 years, HPM Networks has been integrating technology solutions that solve complex business challenges. HPM Networks has designed solutions for both SMB and enterprise customers throughout the San Francisco Bay Area.
The enterprise is being consumerized, and the consumer is being enterprised. Moore's Law does not matter anymore, the future belongs to business virtualization powered by invisible service architecture, powered by hyperscale and hyperconvergence, and facilitated by vertical streaming and horizontal scaling and consolidation. Both buyers and sellers want instant results, and from paperwork to paperless to mindless is the ultimate goal for any seamless transaction. The sweetest sweet spot in innovation is automation. The most painful pain point for any business is the mismatch between supplies a...
The broad selection of hardware, the rapid evolution of operating systems and the time-to-market for mobile apps has been so rapid that new challenges for developers and engineers arise every day. Security, testing, hosting, and other metrics have to be considered through the process. In his session at Big Data Expo, Walter Maguire, Chief Field Technologist, HP Big Data Group, at Hewlett-Packard, will discuss the challenges faced by developers and a composite Big Data applications builder, focusing on how to help solve the problems that developers are continuously battling.
SYS-CON Events announced today that IBM Cloud Data Services has been named “Bronze Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 17th Cloud Expo, which will take place on November 3–5, 2015, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. IBM Cloud Data Services offers a portfolio of integrated, best-of-breed cloud data services for developers focused on mobile computing and analytics use cases.
As enterprises capture more and more data of all types – structured, semi-structured, and unstructured – data discovery requirements for business intelligence (BI), Big Data, and predictive analytics initiatives grow more complex. A company’s ability to become data-driven and compete on analytics depends on the speed with which it can provision their analytics applications with all relevant information. The task of finding data has traditionally resided with IT, but now organizations increasingly turn towards data source discovery tools to find the right data, in context, for business users, d...
SYS-CON Events announced today that MobiDev, a software development company, will exhibit at the 17th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place November 3-5, 2015, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. MobiDev is a software development company with representative offices in Atlanta (US), Sheffield (UK) and Würzburg (Germany); and development centers in Ukraine. Since 2009 it has grown from a small group of passionate engineers and business managers to a full-scale mobile software company with over 150 developers, designers, quality assurance engineers, project manage...
Learn how IoT, cloud, social networks and last but not least, humans, can be integrated into a seamless integration of cooperative organisms both cybernetic and biological. This has been enabled by recent advances in IoT device capabilities, messaging frameworks, presence and collaboration services, where devices can share information and make independent and human assisted decisions based upon social status from other entities. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Michael Heydt, founder of Seamless Thingies, will discuss and demonstrate how devices and humans can be integrated from a simple clust...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Cloud Raxak has been named “Media & Session Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 17th Cloud Expo, which will take place on November 3–5, 2015, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Raxak Protect automates security compliance across private and public clouds. Using the SaaS tool or managed service, developers can deploy cloud apps quickly, cost-effectively, and without error.
Who are you? How do you introduce yourself? Do you use a name, or do you greet a friend by the last four digits of his social security number? Assuming you don’t, why are we content to associate our identity with 10 random digits assigned by our phone company? Identity is an issue that affects everyone, but as individuals we don’t spend a lot of time thinking about it. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Ben Klang, Founder & President of Mojo Lingo, will discuss the impact of technology on identity. Should we federate, or not? How should identity be secured? Who owns the identity? How is identity ...