Splunk is a data analysis tool and while the base package is free to use, higher plans with extra features have been added on over the years. This expansion has paid off because while still making the Community Edition free to use, the company has grown to a value of $17.67 billion.
The Splunk system now includes options for the management of IoT devices and application development support. Above all the company has added on extensive security monitoring tools.
Finding an alternative to Splunk greatly depends on what you want to use the system for. Fundamentally, the Splunk tool is most widely used for log file management. However, even in that category of task, there are a number of different uses that log file data can be put to.
Splunk is able to consolidate collections of log messages that are generated in different formats, which is a powerful aid to analysis. However, that function can be found in many tools – free and paid.
Here is our list of the eleven best Splunk alternatives for log management:
- Datadog Log Management – FREE TRIAL This cloud-based service collects, consolidates and stores log messages from more than 170 applications, plus Syslog and Windows Events messages. Start a 14-day free trial.
- Loggly – FREE TRIAL A log ingestion service that is delivered from the cloud and can consolidate logs formatted in different formats. Access the 30-day free trial.
- ManageEngine Log360 – FREE TRIAL An on-premises system that collects and manages log files to provide source data for security scanning. Runs on Windows Server. Start 30-day free trial.
- Sumo Logic A SaaS system that offers log management that includes an analysis system and archive management.
- LogZilla A high-speed log server for large volumes of log message throughput that is geared towards supporting SIEM systems. Runs on Docker containers.
- Mixpanel A market analysis tool that generates and stores interaction data with websites and mobile apps and then segments that data by different market dimensions. This is a cloud-based package.
- Fluentd A free, open source data collector that works with many log servers. This system is able to gather data from more than 500 applications. Runs on Windows, Linux, macOS, and Docker.
- LogFaces This is a log server that consolidated, and stores log messages. The system also has a log viewer and a throughput tracking and recording service. Available for Windows, Linux, Unix, and Docker.
- Sentry This cross-platform code tracker creates an issues log for development projects and integrates with the major project management and bug tracking tools. Available in free vans paid versions.
- Syslog-ng This log collector works with the standard log message system for Unix, Linux, and macOS, which is called Syslog. Available in free and paid versions.
- ELK/Logstash The Elastic Stack is a suite of free log processing tools and Logstash is the log collector in the group.
You can read more about each of these systems in the following sections.
The best Splunk Alternatives
Datadog is a platform of IT system monitoring and management tools. The Datadog Log Management system offers tools to collect, process, analyze, and store log messages.
- Datadog Log Management has the following features:
- The Log Management package provides data collection agents
- Consolidates different log message formats
- Shows messages live in the console as they arrive at the log server
- Create a meaningful logfile directory structure and rotates log files
- Includes storage space for log files
- Provides a log analysis service
- Manages log archiving
Pricing: Datadog Log Management is a metered service and there are two elements to price calculation.
Ingest is the log collection and processing service and costs $0.10 per GB of processed data per month if paid as a credit in advance.
Logs can be self-hosted or you can take out the Datadog log hosting and archiving service. This is called Retain or Rehydrate and it costs $1,70 per million log events per month with a 15-day retention period. For a 30-day retention period, the price increases to $2,50 per million log events per month. This is the price for the storage of live logs and you are expected to take out a separate subscription to a cloud storage platform to store archives.
Loggly from SolarWinds is a popular cloud-based log monitoring and analysis software. It makes log data more useful and accessible to different groups within an organization.
Loggly comes with the following features.
- Comes with proactive monitoring of key metrics and resources to eliminate problems before it affects end-users.
- Helps to trace the root cause of issues with an in-depth analysis of existing logs.
- You can get deep insights into the working and interaction of your components including their correlations.
- Integrates well with Slack, HipChat, GitHub, Jira and more.
- Analyses data, tracks SLA compliance and looks for specific data trends.
- Gives a visual representation of analyzed data for better understanding.
Pricing: Loggly comes in four versions to suit your varying needs. They are:
- Lite: This is a free version that provides a basic log search for beginners.
- Standard – Starts at $79 a month, and is ideal for small businesses that want easy-to-use log analysis and monitoring.
- Pro – Starts at $199 a month and is designed for companies with a growing list of applications.
- Enterprise – Starts at $349 a month and is an all-inclusive analysis and collaboration option for enterprises.
The image below gives you a bird’s eye view of the features that comes with each version.
Download: You can download the free version or the 30-day free trial.
The features of Log360 include:
- Collects Windows Events and Syslog messages
- Interfaces with more than 700 software packages to extract event information
- Consolidates log records by converting them into a common format
- Stores log files in a meaningful directory structure for compliance auditing
- Compliance with GDPR, GLBA, PCI DSS, FISMA, HIPAA, and SOX
- Includes a data viewer for manual analysis
- Performs automated threat hunting as a SIEM
- Deploys user and entity behavior analytics for activity baselining
- Uses anomaly detection to identify threats
- Sends threat notifications through ManageEngine ServiceDesk Plus, Jira, and Kayoko
- File integrity monitoring
Pricing: ManageEngine Log360 has a complicated price structure with a number of paid add-ons. You need to visit the Get a Quote page at the ManageEngine website to discover the price for your implementation. There is a Free edition available that is limited to collecting data from 25 workstations.
Download: The paid version is called the Premium edition and it is available for a 30-day free trial. The software package runs on Windows Server.
4. Sumo Logic
Sumo Logic is a cloud-native tool that provides log management and analytics services to make the most of big data generated by machines and to get useful insights from the same.
The features of Sumo Logic are:
- It is a unified platform for all logs and metrics, so you can monitor and analyze all apps and infrastructure from a single location.
- Advanced analytics, including machine learning and predictive analytics, help to identify patterns and anomalies from your data.
- Provides a comprehensive understanding of your business environment.
- Comes with a multi-tenant architecture that scales on demand.
- Supports rapid growth and cloud migration.
- You can get started within minutes, thanks to its SaaS capabilities.
- Complies with many industry standards
Pricing: Sumo Logic comes in three editions:
- Sumo Free – This is a free version that comes with a limited set of features
- Sumo Professional – $90/month per 1GB average daily ingest
- Sump Enterprise – $150 / month per 1GB average daily ingest
Download: The paid versions come with a free 30-day trial period. You can download the free version as well as the trial software for paid versions here.
LogZilla is a Network Event Orchestrated (NEO) platform that provides real-time network insight for enterprise network teams.
Here are some of the features of LogZilla.
- Helps IT teams to identify network challenges preemptively.
- It can record up to 855,000 events per second, and this amounts to nearly 40TB a day.
- Comes with many automation features for event enrichment, coordination and repair.
- Requires no prior training and you can get started within minutes.
- Reduces Total cost of ownership (TCO) by 50 to 90%
- Pre-processes data before forwarding it to Syslog and SNMP Trap receivers
- Eliminates false positives.
- Runs in docker containers, which means, you can run LogZilla on any operating system.
Pricing: According to prweb.com, the list price of a LogZilla license is $525 for small and medium businesses, and this includes support and email alerts as well. It is free to use in networks that generate less than 500 events in a day.
For custom pricing, contact the sales team.
Download: You can download the free version here.
Mixpanel is a business analytics tool that tracks user interactions on web and mobile applications, and helps for targeted communication. It also measures user engagement and retention.
The features of Mixpanel are:
- Discovers insights quickly
- Visualizes your data in different formats, so you can understand easily.
- Allows you to bookmark your reports, so you can access them at any time.
- Gives a detailed look into the behavior of customers on your app/website, so you can make the necessary improvements.
- Offers funnel analysis to help you understand where your customers drop off, so you can boost your conversion rates.
- Uncovers trends in your data automatically.
- Helps you to act intelligently on your findings. Allows you to automatically triggers messages, do A/B tests and personalize communication. You can even measure the results of these efforts on this platform.
- Lets you learn more about your end users.
Pricing: Mixpanel comes in three versions :
- Free – 100,000 tracked users per month with a total of 1,000 recorded events per tracked user.
- Growth – 100,000 tracked users per month with a total of 1,000 recorded events per tracked user with analysis facilities. Price starts at $25 per month.
Enterprise – Advanced analytical features and an expansion of the number of tracked users and events, based on pricing. Contact the sales team for a quote.
Download: You can download the free version when you sign up at Mixpanel.
Fluentd is an open-source data collector that helps you to analyze and understand your data better. It is a cross-platform tool , and is a member of Cloud Native Computing Foundation (CNCF).
Here is a look at some of the top features in Fluentd.
- Open source and all components are available under Apache 2 license.
- Ideal for distributed systems logging
- Decouples data sources from backend systems by creating a unified logging layer in the middle.
- Comes with more than 500 plugins that connect to many data sources and outputs.
- Setup process takes under ten minutes.
- Has a strong community
Pricing: 100% Free
Download: Download Fluentd here.
LogFaces is an enterprise logging suite that aggregates, stores, analyzes and displays logs in real-time.
The features of LogFaces are:
- Comes with an out-of-the-box log server that stores all the log data. You own the log server and the aggregated data.
- No subscription fees and usage limitations for valid license holders.
- Sends notifications in real-time, so you don’t have to manage log files.
- The native log viewer is highly responsive and user-friendly.
- Analyzes your log data and helps to identify problems quickly.
- Data access is managed with your own LDAP directory.
Pricing: There are two editions – Enterprise and Site. The Enterprise edition costs $699 while the Site edition costs $1599.
Download: Download a 20-day free trial here.
Sentry is an open-source error tracking software that helps to monitor and fix crashes in real-time. It iterates continuously to check for errors, and in the process, boost the efficiency of employees.
The features of Sentry are:
- Can be set up quickly with just a few lines of code.
- Sends notifications about errors through email, SMS or chat, depending on the existing workflow.
- Quickly finds and fixes errors with high efficiency and visibility.
- Its exception handling features makes it easy for developers to build better apps
- Allows you to integrate error tracking with every commit and deploy workflow.
- It is delivered as a host service.
- Works well with most programming languages.
- Errors monitoring includes bug’s history of events and actions to help you reproduce errors without waiting for user feedback.
- Gives error context with the right tags and other relevant information.
Pricing: The developer version is free, and it is ideal for personal projects and early stage applications. The Team edition starts at $26 a month, and is a good choice for apps and teams that expect to see a big growth in the coming months. Business edition starts at $80 a month while the Enterprise edition helps to support business critical applications. Contact the sales team for the price of Enterprise edition.
Syslog-ng is an open source implementation of the syslog protocol for Unix systems. It extends the original syslogd model and adds more features to make it more usable.
The features of syslog-ng are:
- Can be extended with plugins to suit any use case.
- The additional modules can be written using C, Java, Python, Lua or Perl.
- Supports legacy BSD syslog (RFC3164), enhanced RFC5424, journald and JSON formats.
- Collects data from a diverse range of sources and correlates them to a common format.
- Comes with built-in parsers for unstructured data.
- Supports message queues such as STOMP and AMQP.
Pricing: There are two editions – open source and Premium. The open source edition is free while the Premium edition is paid. Contact syslog-ng for pricing.
Logstash is an open-source tool that ingests data from many sources, analyzes and sends it to your preferred stash.
Logstash comes with the following features.
- Supports a variety of input sources such as log files, web sites, applications, data stores, AWS services and more.
- Filters each event, identifies named fields to build structures and changes them to a common format for easy understanding.
- Deciphers geo coordinates from IP addresses.
- Excludes sensitive data fields.
- Comes with a huge library of filters to suit every organization.
- Supports many output streams, so you can send the data to the most effective platforms/devices.
- Integrates well with popular data sources like Netflow.
- Offers more than 200 plugins.
- Durable and secure.
- Allows to manage everything from a single user interface.
Pricing: 100% FREE
Download: Download Logstash here.
To conclude, Splunk is a great tool for data analytics. But that’s not the only one available in the market today, especially if you don’t want to spend so much money or if you want any specific features that’s not available in Splunk. We hope the above Alternatives to Splunk will help you make an informed choice when it comes to data collection and analytics.