Default log file locations

Peter Bittner peter.bittner at
Thu Jun 27 17:12:51 UTC 2019

Hi there!

In my day job I'm helping to get applications from traditional
environments running in cloud environments. Cloud native applications
are just "normal" applications, but there are a few properties that
they should satisfy (apart from resiliency and scalability).

For logging this boils down to what is prescribed by the 12-factor
app: The log output should be a continuous stream, i.e. simply log to
the terminal.

Now, as of today, at least on Debian based container images, the
behavior of Nginx is to write to /var/log/nginx/access.log and
/var/log/nginx/error.log by default. We try to compensate this by
making those files symbolic links to /dev/stdout and /dev/stderr.
We're doing this also, because there seem to be cases when a log entry
is written _before_ it is configured via the Nginx configuration file.

>From my perspective it would be advantageous to have Nginx write to
the terminal by default (i.e. no hardcoded log file locations) and
allow to override this behavior via the Nginx configuration file.

Is there any reason why the default behavior is not that way yet?


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