Configure audit logging in YSQL

YugabyteDB YSQL uses PostgreSQL Audit Extension (pgAudit) to provide detailed session and/or object audit logging via YugabyteDB YB-TServer logging.

The goal of the YSQL audit logging is to provide YugabyteDB users with capability to produce audit logs often required to comply with government, financial, or ISO certifications. An audit is an official inspection of an individual's or organization's accounts, typically by an independent body.

Enable audit logging

To enable audit logging, first configure audit logging for the cluster. This is done in one of the following ways:

  • Use the --ysql_pg_conf_csv YB-TServer flag.

    Database administrators can use ysql_pg_conf_csv to configure audit logging with pgAudit flags.

    For example, ysql_pg_conf_csv="pgaudit.log='DDL',pgaudit.log_level=notice"

    These configuration values are set when the YugabyteDB cluster is created and hence are picked up for all users and for every session.

  • Use the SET command in a running session.

    The SET command essentially changes the run-time configuration parameters.

    For example, SET pgaudit.log='DDL'

    SET only affects the value used by the current session. For more information, see the PostgreSQL documentation.

After configuring the YB-TServer and starting the cluster, create the pgAudit extension by executing the following statement in ysqlsh:


Customize audit logging

You can customize YSQL audit logging using the pgAudit flags, as per the following table.

Option Description Default
pgaudit.log Specifies which classes of statements are logged by session audit logging, as follows:
  • READ: SELECT and COPY when the source is a relation or a query.
  • WRITE: INSERT, UPDATE, DELETE, TRUNCATE, and COPY when the destination is a relation.
  • FUNCTION: Function calls and DO blocks.
  • ROLE: Statements related to roles and privileges: GRANT, REVOKE, CREATE/ALTER/DROP ROLE.
  • DDL: All DDL that is not included in the ROLE class.
  • MISC: Miscellaneous commands, such as DISCARD, FETCH, CHECKPOINT, VACUUM, SET.
  • MISC_SET: Miscellaneous SET commands, such as SET ROLE.
  • ALL: Include all of the preceding options.
Multiple classes can be provided using a comma-separated list and classes can be subtracted by prefacing the class with a minus (-) sign.
pgaudit.log_catalog ON - Session logging would be enabled in the case for all relations in a statement that are in pg_catalog.
OFF - Disabling this setting reduces noise in the log from tools.
pgaudit.log_client ON - Log messages are to be visible to a client process such as psql. Helpful for debugging.
OFF - Reverse.
Note that pgaudit.log_level is only enabled when pgaudit.log_client is ON.
pgaudit.log_level Values: DEBUG1 .. DEBUG5, INFO, NOTICE, WARNING, LOG.
Log level is used for log entries (ERROR, FATAL, and PANIC are not allowed). This setting is used for testing.
Note that pgaudit.log_level is only enabled when pgaudit.log_client is ON; otherwise the default is used.
pgaudit.log_parameter ON - Audit logging includes the parameters that were passed with the statement. When parameters are present they are included in CSV format after the statement text. OFF
pgaudit.log_relation ON - Session audit logging creates separate log entries for each relation (TABLE, VIEW, and so on) referenced in a SELECT or DML statement. This is a shortcut for exhaustive logging without using object audit logging. OFF
pgaudit.log_statement_once ON - Specifies whether logging will include the statement text and parameters with the first log entry for a statement or sub-statement combination or with every entry. Disabling this setting results in less verbose logging but may make it more difficult to determine the statement that generated a log entry. OFF
pgaudit.role Specifies the master role to use for object audit logging. Multiple audit roles can be defined by granting them to the master role. This allows multiple groups to be in charge of different aspects of audit logging. None


Use the following steps to configure audit logging in a YugabyteDB cluster with bare minimum configurations.

Enable audit logging

Start the YugabyteDB cluster with the following audit logging configuration:


Alternatively, start ysqlsh and execute the following commands:

SET pgaudit.log='DDL';
SET pgaudit.log_client=ON;
SET pgaudit.log_level=notice;

Load the pgAudit extension

To enable the pgAudit extension on the YugabyteDB cluster, create the pgAudit extension as follows:


Create a table and verify the log

As pgaudit.log='DDL' is configured, CREATE TABLE YSQL statements are logged and the corresponding log is shown in the YSQL client:

CREATE TABLE employees (empno int, ename text, address text,
  salary int, account_number text);
"create table employees ( empno int, ename text, address text, salary int,
account_number text );",<not logged>

Notice that audit logs are generated for DDL statements.

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