The Set Source Type page
The Set Source Type page lets you improve event processing by previewing how your data will be indexed. Use this page to confirm that Splunk Enterprise indexes your data as you want it to appear.
Preview data prior to indexing
On the Set Source Type page, you can make adjustments to how the software indexes your data. You can adjust and improve the indexing process interactively so that when Splunk software indexes and stores the incoming data, the event data ends up in the format that you want.
Assign the correct source type to your data
The Set Source Type page helps you apply the correct source type to your incoming data. The source type is one of the default fields that is assigned to all incoming data, and determines how Splunk software formats the data during indexing. By assigning the correct source type to your data, the indexed version of the data (the event data) will look the way you want it to, with correct timestamps and event breaks.
Splunk Enterprise comes with many predefined source types and attempts to assign the correct source type to your data based on its format. In some cases, you might need to manually select a different predefined source type to the data. In other cases, you might need to create a new source type with customized event processing settings.
The page displays how Splunk Enterprise will index the data based on the application of a predefined source type. You can modify the settings interactively and save those modifications as a new source type.
Use the Set Source Type page to:
- See what your data will look like without any changes, using the default event-processing configuration.
- Apply a different source type to see whether it offers results more to your liking.
- Modify settings for timestamps and event breaks to improve the quality of the indexed data and save the modifications as a new source type.
- Create a new source type from scratch.
The page saves any new source types to a
props.conf file that you can later distribute across the indexers in your deployment so that the source types are available globally. See Distribute source type configurations.
For information on source types, see Why source types matter in this manual.
About the Log to Metrics source type category
Source types in the Log to Metrics category are used for the ingest-time conversion of log events to metric data points. If you select a source type from this category, a set of Metrics controls will appear on the left side of the Set Sourcetype page. For more information about log-to-metrics conversion and the Metrics settings, see Set up ingest-time log-to-metrics conversion in Splunk Web in Metrics.
When you apply a Log to Metrics source type to an input, the data preview feature is disabled.
Use the Set Source Type page
When the Set Source Type page loads, Splunk Enterprise chooses a source type based on the data you specified. You can accept that recommendation or change it.
Here is an example of the Set Source Type page.
- Look at the preview pane on the right side of the page to see how Splunk Enterprise will index the data. Review event breaks and timestamps.
- (Optional) View the event summary by clicking on the View event summary link on the right. Splunk Web displays the event summary in a new window. See View event summary.
- If the data appears the way that you want, then proceed to Step 5. Otherwise, choose from one of the following options:
- After making the changes, return to Step 1 to preview the data again.
- After you are satisfied with the results, click "'Next"' to proceed to the Input Settings page.
Choose an existing source type
If the data does not appear the way that you want, see whether or not an existing source type fixes the problem.
Note: If Splunk Enterprise can detect a source type, the source type is displayed in the "Source type <sourcetype>" button. If a source type cannot be determined, "Sourcetype: System Defaults" is displayed. Input Settings
- Click the Source type: <sourcetype> button to see a list of source type categories. Under each category is a list of source types within that category.
- Hover over the category that best represents your data. As you do, the source types under that category appear in a pop-up menu to the right.
- Select the source type that best represents your data. Splunk Web updates the data preview pane to show how the data looks under the new source type. You might need to scroll to see all source types in a category.
- Review your data again.
View event summary
You can see a summary of the events within the data sample by clicking the "View Event Summary" link on the right side of the page. This summary shows the following information:
- The size of the sample data, in bytes.
- The number of events that were present in the sample.
- The chart that represents the distribution of the events over time. Splunk software uses date stamps within the file to determine how to display this chart.
- A breakdown of the number of lines each event in the sample took up.
Adjust time stamps and event breaks
If you choose an existing source type without success, then you can manually adjust how Splunk Enterprise processes timestamps and event line breaks for the incoming data.
To manually adjust time stamp and event line breaking parameters, use the Event Breaks, Timestamp, Delimited Settings, and Advanced drop-down tabs on the left pane of the Set Sourcetypes page. The preview pane updates as you make changes to the settings.
Note: Some tabs appear only if Splunk Enterprise detects that a file is a certain type, or if you select a specific source type for a file.
- The Event breaks tab appears when Splunk Enterprise cannot determine how to line-break the file, or if you select a source type that does not have line breaking defined.
- The Delimited settings tab appears only when Splunk Enterprise detects that you want to import a structured data file, or you select a source type for structured data (such as
For more information about how to adjust time stamps and event breaks, see Modify event processing.
- Click the Event breaks tab. The tab displays the Break type buttons, which control how Splunk software line-breaks the file into events.
- Auto: Detect event breaks based on the location of the time stamp.
- By Line: Breaks every line into a single event.
- Regex…: Uses the specified regular expression to determine line breaking.
- Click the Timestamps tab. The tab expands to show options for extraction. Select from one of the following options.
- Auto: Extract timestamps automatically by looking in the file for timestamp events.
- Current time: Apply the current time to all events detected.
- Advanced: Specify the time zone, timestamp format (in a specific format known as strptime()), and any fields that comprise the timestamp.
- Click the Delimited settings tab to display delimiting options.
- Field delimiter: The delimiting character for structured data files, such as comma-separated value (CSV) files.
- Quote character: The character that Splunk Enterprise uses to determine when something is in quotes.
- File preamble: A regular expression that tells Splunk Enterprise to ignore one or more preamble lines (lines that don't contain any actual data) in the structured data file.
- Field Names: How to determine field names: Automatically, based on line number, based on a comma-separated list, or through a regular expression.
- Click the Advanced tab to display fields that let you enter attribute/value pairs that get committed directly to the
Caution: The "Advanced" tab requires advanced knowledge of Splunk features, and changes made here might negatively affect the indexing of your data. Consider consulting a member of Splunk Professional Services for help in configuring these options.
Make configuration changes in the Advanced tab
- Click a field to edit props.conf entries that Splunk Enterprise generates based on your previous choices.
- Click on the X to the right of an attribute/value field pair to delete that pair.
- Click New setting to create a new attribute/value field pair and specify a valid attribute and value for
- Click Apply settings to commit the changes to the
Prepare your data for previewing
This documentation applies to the following versions of Splunk® Enterprise: 7.2.0, 7.2.1, 7.2.2, 7.2.3, 7.2.4, 7.2.5, 7.2.6