In the release notes for openSUSE 13.1, developers proudly stated that Tomcat logs are no longer being written into catalina.out, but rather written to syslog. I saw similar behaviour with new distributions, but now it's my problem also. I really don't know why it is considered as improvement. And that's why,

  1. My Tomcat installation is used as a playground for several developers, and I hardly want to share my syslog with them.
  2. The webapp under Tomcat is pretty verbose with logs (since it is under development) and I don't want to put all these garbage in to the syslog.

There are a plenty of tutorials on how to redirect Tomcat log into syslog, but I need to perform reverse operation. Any ideas?

UPD: Here is my tomcat.conf, nothing suspicious there:


CATALINA_HOME="/usr/share/tomcat" CATALINA_BASE="/usr/share/tomcat" CATALINA_TMPDIR="/var/cache/tomcat/temp"





CATALINA_OPTS="-Xms2G -Xmx8G -XX:PermSize=256m -XX:MaxPermSize=4G"

  • what is your tomcat config ? (not oblige to put every virtual host)
    – Kiwy
    Mar 25, 2014 at 9:33
  • does the catalina.sh still present ?
    – Kiwy
    Mar 25, 2014 at 21:46
  • Yes, it's present. I have found some acceptable solution. I will publish it in a couple of minutes.
    – no id
    Mar 25, 2014 at 22:12

1 Answer 1


Tomcat being installed from openSUSE repo runs as a service under systemd. According to this page, it is not possible to redirect output of systemd-controlled services directly to the file. Thus, I have the only option left: filter messages from syslog when they got there.

I have created file /etc/rsyslog.d/tomcat.conf and put these lines there:

:programname,contains,"tomcat" /var/log/tomcat/tomcat.log

:programname,contains,"tomcat" ~

This works fine for me.

UPD 2018: Nowdays every developer would rather have own Tomcat instance unpacked into a folder, not installed system wide. Or even one embedded into the program, that could be done in Spring Boot for example.

  • Any idea how to do this for syslog-ng?
    – Phil
    Mar 8, 2015 at 6:07

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