Install Promtail Binary and Start as a Service
Download and Install Promtail Binary
Now we will create the Promtail service that will act as the collector for Loki.
We can also get the Promtail binary from the same place as Loki.
To check the latest version of Promtail, visit the Loki releases page. https://github.com/grafana/loki/releases/
And allow the execute permission on the Promtail binary
Create the Promtail config
Now we will create the Promtail config file.
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Test Promtail Works,
You can now test Promtail by running
Open a browser and visit,
http://[Your Server Domain or IP]:9080
http://[Your Server Domain or IP]:9080/metrics
After having a good look around to verify it works, stop the Promtail server by pressing CTRL-C.
Configure Promtail as a Service
Now we will configure Promtail as a service so that we can keep it running in the background.
Create user specifically for the Promtail service
Create a file called promtail.service
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Now start and check the service is running.
We can now leave the new Promtail service running.
Now, since this example uses Promtail to read the
promtail user won't yet have permissions to read it.
So add the user promtail to the
If you ever need to stop the new Promtail service, then type
Note it may take a minute to stop.
If you reboot your server, the Promtail Service may not restart automatically.
You can set the Promtail service to auto restart after reboot by entering,
sudo systemctl enable promtail.service
When your Promtail server is running, it will be accessible remotely. If you only want localhost to be able to connect, then type
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Be sure to backup your iptables rules if you installed iptables-persistent in the last section.
After blocking port 9080 for external requests, you can verify that local request still work using
iptables settings will be lost in case of system reboot. You will need to reapply them manually,
This will save your settings into two files called,
Any changes you make to the iptables configuration won't be auto saved to these persistent files, so if you want to update these files with any changes, then use the commands,
iptables-save > /etc/iptables/rules.v4
iptables-save > /etc/iptables/rules.v6
If you see the error in the promtail status
msg="error creating promtail" error="open /tmp/positions.yaml: permission denied"
You should check the owner of the file configured in the positions section of the config-promtail.yml matches the name of the user configured in the promtail.service script above.
My user is promtail, and the positions is set as /tmp/positions.yaml so I set the owner.
chown promtail:promtail /tmp/positions.yaml
If you set up Promtail service with to run as a specific user, and you are using Promtail to view
systemd-journal and you don't see any data in Grafana, but you can see the job name, then possibly you need to add the user promtail to the
usermod -a -G systemd-journal promtail
You may need to restart the promtail service and checking again its status.
If you see the error "found character that cannot start any token" than that is likely to mean you have a tab somewhere in the yml indenting one of the tokens. Replace it with spaces.