[Tutor] 2016-02-01 Filter STRINGS in Log File and Pass as VARAIBLE within PYTHON script

Cameron Simpson cs at zip.com.au
Mon Feb 1 05:50:41 EST 2016

On 01Feb2016 15:53, knnleow GOOGLE <knnleow at gmail.com> wrote:
>trying out on how to port my unix shell script to python.
>get more complicated than i expected.....: (
>i am not familiar with the modules available in python.
>anyone care to share how to better the clumsy approach below.
>                timestamp02 = time.strftime("%Y-%m-%d-%H%M%S")
>                banIPaddressesFile = os.popen("cat 
>/var/log/fail2ban.log| egrep ssh| egrep Ban| egrep " + myDate + "| awk 
>\'{print $7}\'| sort -n| uniq >/tmp/banIPaddressesFile." + 

First up, this is still essentially a shell script. You're constructing a shell 
pipeline like this (paraphrased):

  cat >/var/log/fail2ban.log
  | egrep ssh
  | egrep Ban
  | egrep myDate
  | awk '{print $7}'
  | sort -n
  | uniq 

So really, you're doing almost nothing in Python. You're also writing 
intermediate results to a temporary filename, then reading from it. Unless you 
really need to keep that file around, you won't need that either.

Before I get into the Python side of things, there are a few small (small) 
criticisms of your shell script:

- it has a "useless cat"; this is a very common shell inefficiency there people 
  put "cat filename | filter1 | filter2 ..." when they could more cleanly just 
  go "filter1 <filename | filter2 | ..."

- you are searching for fixed strings; why are you using egrep? Just say "grep" 
  (or even "fgrep" if you're old school - you're new to this so I presume not)

- you're using "sort -n | uniq", presumably because uniq requires sorted input; 
  you are better off using "sort -un" here and skipping uniq. I'd also point 
  out that since these are IP addresses, "sort -n" doesn't really do what you 
  want here.

So, to the Python:

You seem to want to read the file /var/log/fail2ban.log and for certain 
specific lines, record column 7 which I gather from the rest of the code 
(below) is an IP address. I gather you just want one copy of each unique IP 

So, to read lines of the file the standard idom goes:

  with open('/var/log/fail2ban.log') as fail_log:
    for line in fail_log:
      ... process lines here ...

You seem to be checking for two keywords and a date in the interesting lines.  
You can do this with a simple test:

  if 'ssh' in line and 'Ban' in line and myDate in line:

If you want the seventh column from the line (per your awk command) you can get 
it like this:

  words = line.split()
  word7 = words[6]

because Python arrays count form 0, therefore index 6 is the seventh word.

You want the unique IP addresses, so I suggest storing them all in a set and 
not bothering with a sort until some other time. So make an empty set before 
you read the file:

  ip_addrs = set()

and add each address to it for the lines you select:


After you have read the whole file you will have the desired addresses in the 
ip_addrs set.

Try to put all that together and come back with working code, or come back with 
completed but not working code and specific questions.

Cameron Simpson <cs at zip.com.au>

More information about the Tutor mailing list