Splunk® Universal Forwarder

Forwarder Manual

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Compatibility between forwarders and indexers

The following table shows which versions of forwarder and indexer are compatible. A best practice is to use indexers with versions that are the same or higher than forwarder versions.

  • An X in a cell indicates that this version of forwarder can send event data to the corresponding version of indexer.
  • An M in a cell indicates that this version of forwarder can send both event data and metrics data to the corresponding version of indexer.
  • An S in a cell indicates that this version of forwarder can send data to this version of indexer after you change the Secure Sockets Layer (SSL)/Transport Layer Security (TLS) version and cipher suite on the forwarder. See Known Issues in the Splunk Enterprise Release Notes for instructions on changing the SSL/TLS version and cipher suite.
  • An empty cell indicates that Splunk does not support sending any type of data from this version of forwarder to the corresponding version of indexer.

This table lists versions 4.3 and 5.0 for informational purposes only. Version 5.0 forwarders are technically compatible with higher versions of indexer, but Splunk does not provide support for version 4.3 or 5.0 software. Version 5.0 reached its End of Life on November 30, 2017 and version 4.3 reached its end of life in 2014.

Indexer version
4.3 (NS) 5.0 (NS) 6.0-6.1 6.2-6.6 7.0
4.3 (NS) X X X
5.0 (NS) X X X S S
6.0-6.1 X X S S
6.2-6.6 S X X
7.0 S X M

Metrics forwarding compatibility

Metrics indexing from forwarders is supported only if both indexers and forwarders are at version 7.0.0 or later. There is no support for forwarding metrics data from a 6.6 or earlier forwarder to a 7.0 indexer.

Forwarding compatibility with other features

The following features are available only if both indexers and forwarders are at version 6.x or higher:

  • Dynamic file headers.
  • Forwarding of structured data.
  • Timezone transmission by the forwarder. Additionally, forwarders do not maintain the timezone transmission feature across intermediate forwarding tiers when those tiers consist solely of light or universal forwarders.

For app-specific compatibility restrictions, see the app documentation on Splunkbase.

Example forwarder deployment topologies
How to forward data to Splunk Light

This documentation applies to the following versions of Splunk® Universal Forwarder: 6.6.0, 6.6.1, 6.6.2, 6.6.3, 6.6.4, 6.6.5, 6.6.6, 6.6.7, 6.6.8, 6.6.9, 6.6.10, 6.6.11, 6.6.12, 7.0.0, 7.0.1, 7.0.2, 7.0.3, 7.0.4, 7.0.5, 7.0.6, 7.0.7, 7.0.8, 7.0.9, 7.0.10, 7.0.11, 7.0.13


Hello Parkyongsu. Thank you for raising this question. When https://docs.splunk.com/Documentation/Forwarder/6.5.10/Forwarder/Compatibilitybetweenforwardersandindexers was written in 2015 some customers used Universal Forwarder 4.3 in an unsupported manner to send event data to versions of Splunk Enterprise as high as 6.5.x without reporting incompatibilities. Splunk has no reason to believe that incompatibilities have been introduced with those version combinations since 2015, but we do not test this because UF version 4.3 is unsupported software.
We will update https://docs.splunk.com/Documentation/Forwarder/6.5.10/Forwarder/Compatibilitybetweenforwardersandindexers to clarify this situation.

Andrewb splunk, Splunker
August 13, 2019

Hello Malmoore,

seems to say "UF 4.3.x or later are compatible with Indexer 6.5.x."
But, this manual says "UF 4.3.x is compatible only with Indexer 4.3, 5.0, 6.0-6.1 (not with 6.5.x)."

Which is correct?

* I know 4.3.x is not supported anymore, but I think the compatibility is a different issue.

August 12, 2019

Hi Hnoboru,

The key takeaway here, as you so aptly state, is that 4.3 is not supported in any form anymore. The version hasn't had support since October 2013.

What likely happened is an oversight when we converted the previous, text-based forwarder compatibility descriptions to the current table. Regardless of that, nobody should be using a version 4.3 forwarder for any reason at this point.

Malmoore, Splunker
August 7, 2019

I know 4.3 is not supported anymore, and we need to follow the latest document,
but the compatibility information are different between 6.5 and 7.0 document.

Would you tell me the reason why universal forwarder 4.3 got incompatible with 6.2 - 6.5 now?

A Splunk Enterprise indexer that is version 6.0 or later can receive data from a universal forwarder that is version 4.3 or later.

The table says universal forwarder 4.3 is only compatible with up until 6.0 - 6.1.

Hnoboru splunk, Splunker
August 6, 2019

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