Grafana Enterprise Logs 1.1: Access control for log lines with sensitive data

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Grafana Enterprise Logs only found its way into the Grafana Enterprise Stack at the beginning of the year, and version 1.1 is now available. The software provider Grafana Labs has added some new features to its tool, including label-based access control (LBAC).

Grafana Enterprise Logs (GEL) is a self-managed logging application that offers indexing, storage and administration control, among other things, and is aimed at large companies that want to take care of observability on their own infrastructure. GEL is based on the open source project Grafana Loki, which started in 2018 and offers a logging backend and according to documentation “like Prometheus, but for logs” is supposed to be. In contrast to Loki and the monitoring and alerting software Prometheus, GEL is not open source, but a commercial offer within the Grafana Enterprise Stack.

Grafana Labs describes the biggest innovation in GEL 1.1 as the fact that it now offers Label-based Access Control (LBAC) for assigning permissions to view logs. This should be useful, for example, if two teams of employees use GEL, but they should have different access rights to logs, for example due to sensitive personal data. LBAC then takes action by checking the authorization of the team members concerned using a previously assigned label and only displaying the log lines that they are authorized to view. Another advantage of LBAC is the reduced amount of data, which should deliver faster results and reduce the hardware requirements. Label-based access control is already implemented in a similar way in Grafana Enterprise Metrics, another component of the Grafana Enterprise Stack.

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Grafana is used to visualize data by creating dashboards from measured values. In addition, the software can send warning messages if desired. Grafana Enterprise Logs are chargeable as part of the Grafana Enterprise Stack and can be obtained both as a stand-alone tool and in conjunction with the other elements of the stack. Grafana Cloud, on the other hand, is available in a free version, which includes three users and ten dashboards. Grafana Labs now places its open source products under the GNU Affero General Public License v3.

Everything else about Grafana Enterprise Logs 1.1 can be found in a blog entry.


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