NSX with Log Insight Integration

This post covers the steps required to configure NSX with Log Insight integration. The versions used are NSX 6.2.5 and Log Insight 4.0, for assistance with getting these products up and running see the NSX Install Guide and vRealize Log Insight Install Guide posts. Log Insight is available to NSX customers entitled to use v6.2.4 and above, at no extra cost. The Log Insight for NSX license allows for the collection of vSphere and NSX log data.

The first step is to install the NSX Content pack on the Log Insight instance, then we’ll configure NSX Manager, the NSX Controllers, and any NSX Edges to use Log Insight as a syslog server.

NSX Content Pack

Browse to the IP address or FQDN of the Log Insight appliance and log in as admin.


Click the menu option in the top right hand corner of the page.


If you need to configure vSphere integration click Administration and vSphere under the Integration menu on the left hand navigation pane. Enter the connection details of the vCenter Server. To configure only specific hosts to send logs to Log Insight click Advanced options. Test the connection and when you’re ready click Save.


To install the NSX Content Pack select Content Packs from the menu option in the right hand corner of the page. Under Marketplace locate the VMware NSX-vSphere Content Pack.


Select the content pack, accept the license agreement and click Install.


The next message informs you to setup vSphere Integration, which we covered above, and log forwarding for the NSX Manager, Controllers, and Edge components, which we’ll cover next. Click Ok.


The NSX Content Pack gives us additional dashboards accessible by clicking the drop down menu next to General on the Dashboards page. We won’t see any data there yet, as we need to configure the NSX components to use syslog.


NSX Manager

Browse to the IP address or FQDN of the NSX Manager and login as admin.


Click Manage Appliance Settings.


From the General tab locate Syslog Server and click Edit.


Enter the syslog server name or IP address and use port 514 protocol UDP. Click Ok to save the settings.


NSX Controllers

Configuration of a syslog server for NSX Controllers is done through an API call. For the initial configuration a REST client is required. In this example we’ll use Postman for Google Chrome. Download the Postman app from the Chrome Web Store. When you first open the app click skip to use without creating an account. On the Authorisation tab set the authorisation type to Basic Auth. Enter the admin username and password of the NSX Manager.


Click the Headers tab, in the key field type Content-Type, in the value field type application/xml. (The Authorization key in the screenshot automatically generates after configuring authorisation).


To view the configured syslog server of an NSX Controller enter the URL https://NSX/api/2.0/vdn/controller/controller-1/syslog, replacing NSX with the NSX Manager name, you can also update the controller if required (i.e. controller-2, controller-3, and so on). Ensure Get is selected and click Send, the output will list the syslog configuration and is displayed in the Response field.


To configure the syslog server change Get to Post in the drop down menu. Then click the Body tab and select raw. Enter the following text, replacing LOG with the correct syslog server.


Click Send. The new syslog server will be set. Change the controller-1 section of the URL to controller-2 and click Send to configure the same syslog server for controller-2, and again for controller-3. It is important that each NSX Controller is configured with the IP address of the Log Insight server. You can change Post to Get to view the syslog server configuration again once complete.

NSX Edges

NSX Edge Service Gateways and Distributed Logical Routers can be configured for syslog in the vSphere web client. From the home page click Networking & Security, select NSX Edges.


Double click the ESG or DLR and open the Manage tab, Settings, Configuration. In the Details pane next to Syslog servers click Change.


Enter the syslog server name or IP, ensure the protocol is UDP and click Ok.


The syslog configuration is now complete, after a few minutes you should see events start to appear in the Log Insight dashboards.


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