Event Forwarder Reference

Carbon Black Event Forwarder is a standalone service that will listen on the CB Response bus and export events (both watchlist/feed hits as well as raw endpoint events, if configured) in a normalized JSON or LEEF format. The events can be saved to a file, delivered to a network service or archived automatically to an Amazon AWS S3 bucket. These events can be consumed by any external system that accepts JSON or LEEF, including Splunk and IBM QRadar.

The list of events to collect is configurable. By default all feed and watchlist hits, alerts, binary notifications, and raw sensor events are exported into JSON. The configuration file for the connector is stored in /etc/cb/integrations/event-forwarder/cb-event-forwarder.conf.

Quickstart Guide

The cb-event-forwarder can be installed on any 64-bit Linux machine running CentOS 6.x. It can be installed on the same machine as the Carbon Black server, or another machine. If you are forwarding a large volume of events to QRadar (for example, all file modifications and/or registry modifications), or are forwarding events from a Carbon Black cluster, then installing it on a separate machine is recommended. Otherwise, it is acceptable to install the cb-event-forwarder on the Carbon Black server itself.


To install and configure the cb-event-forwarder, perform these steps as “root” on your target Linux system.

  1. Install the CbOpenSource repository if it isn’t already present:

    cd /etc/yum.repos.d
    curl -O https://opensource.carbonblack.com/release/x86_64/CbOpenSource.repo
  2. Install the RPM via YUM:

    yum install cb-event-forwarder

Configure the cb-event-forwarder

  1. If installing on a machine other than the Carbon Black server, copy the RabbitMQ username and password into the rabbit_mq_username and rabbit_mq_password variables in /etc/cb/integrations/event-forwarder/cb-event-forwarder.conf file. Also fill out the cb_server_hostname with the hostname or IP address where the Carbon Black server can be reached. If the cb-event-forwarder is forwarding events from a Carbon Black cluster, the cb_server_hostname should be set to the hostname or IP address of the Carbon Black master node.

  2. Ensure that the configuration is valid by running the cb-event-forwarder in Check mode: /usr/share/cb/integrations/event-forwarder/cb-event-forwarder -check as root. If everything is OK, you will see a message starting with “Initialized output”. If there are any errors, those errors will be printed to your screen.

Configure Carbon Black

By default, CB publishes the feed.* and watchlist.* events over the bus (see the Events documentation for more information). If you want to capture raw sensor events or the binaryinfo.* notifications, you have to enable those features in /etc/cb/cb.conf:

  • If you are capturing raw sensor events then you also need to edit the DatastoreBroadcastEventTypes option in /etc/cb/cb.conf to enable broadcast of the raw sensor events you wish to export.
  • If you are capturing binary observed events you also need to edit the EnableSolrBinaryInfoNotifications option in /etc/cb/cb.conf and set it to True.

By Default the Message Bus listens on port 5004. Ensure firewall rules allow for incoming and outgoing TCP connections to this port.

Note on enabling Raw Sensor Events

We have seen a performance impact when exporting all raw sensor events onto the enterprise bus. We do not recommend exporting all the events. The performance impacts are seen when the events are broadcast on the bus, by enabling the “DatastoreBroadcastEventTypes”. We recommend that at most, only process and netconn events be broadcast on the event bus.

Carbon Black needs to be restarted if any variables were changed in /etc/cb/cb.conf by executing service cb-enterprise restart.

If you are configuring the cb-event-forwarder on a Carbon Black cluster, the DatastoreBroadcastEventTypes and/or EnableSolrBinaryInfoNotifications settings must be distributed to the /etc/cb/cb.conf configuration file on all minion nodes and the cluster restarted using the /usr/share/cb/cbcluster restart command.

Starting and Stopping the Service

Once the service is installed, it is managed by the Upstart init system in CentOS 6.x. You can control the service via the initctl command. * To start the service, initctl start cb-event-forwarder * To stop the service, initctl stop cb-event-forwarder

Once the service is installed, it is configured to start automatically on system boot.



The Carbon Black event forwarder can be used to export Carbon Black events in a way easily configured for Splunk. You’ll need to install and configure the Splunk TA to consume the Carbon Black event data. It is recommended that the event bridge use a file based output with Splunk universal forwarder configured to monitor the file.

More information about configuring the Splunk TA can be found here


The Carbon Black event forwarder can forward Carbon Black events in the LEEF format to QRadar. To forward Carbon Black events to a QRadar server:

  1. Modify /etc/cb/integrations/event-forwarder/cb-event-forwarder.conf to include udpout=<qradaripaddress>:<port> (NOTE: Port is usually 514)
  2. Change the output format to LEEF in the configuration file: output_format=leef.
  3. Change the output type to UDP in the configuration file: output_type=udp.

For more information on the LEEF format, see the Events documentation.

Logging & Diagnostics

The connector logs to the directory /var/log/cb/integrations/cb-event-forwarder. An example of a successful startup log:

2015/12/07 12:57:26 cb-event-forwarder version 3.0.0 starting
2015/12/07 12:57:26 Interface address
2015/12/07 12:57:26 Interface address fe80::20c:29ff:fe85:bcd0
2015/12/07 12:57:26 Configured to capture events: [watchlist.hit.# watchlist.storage.hit.# feed.ingress.hit.#
feed.storage.hit.# feed.query.hit.# alert.watchlist.hit.# ingress.event.process ingress.event.procstart
ingress.event.netconn ingress.event.procend ingress.event.childproc ingress.event.moduleload
ingress.event.module ingress.event.filemod ingress.event.regmod binaryinfo.# binarystore.file.added]
2015/12/07 12:57:26 Initialized output: File /var/cb/data/event_bridge_output.json
2015/12/07 12:57:26 Diagnostics available via HTTP at http://cbtest:33706/debug/vars
2015/12/07 12:57:26 Starting AMQP loop
2015/12/07 12:57:26 Connecting to message bus...
2015/12/07 12:57:26 Subscribed to watchlist.hit.#
2015/12/07 12:57:26 Subscribed to watchlist.storage.hit.#
2015/12/07 12:57:26 Subscribed to feed.ingress.hit.#
2015/12/07 12:57:26 Subscribed to feed.storage.hit.#
2015/12/07 12:57:26 Subscribed to feed.query.hit.#
2015/12/07 12:57:26 Subscribed to alert.watchlist.hit.#
2015/12/07 12:57:26 Subscribed to ingress.event.process
2015/12/07 12:57:26 Subscribed to ingress.event.procstart
2015/12/07 12:57:26 Subscribed to ingress.event.netconn
2015/12/07 12:57:26 Subscribed to ingress.event.procend
2015/12/07 12:57:26 Subscribed to ingress.event.childproc
2015/12/07 12:57:26 Subscribed to ingress.event.moduleload
2015/12/07 12:57:26 Subscribed to ingress.event.module
2015/12/07 12:57:26 Subscribed to ingress.event.filemod
2015/12/07 12:57:26 Subscribed to ingress.event.regmod
2015/12/07 12:57:26 Subscribed to binaryinfo.#
2015/12/07 12:57:26 Subscribed to binarystore.file.added
2015/12/07 12:57:26 Starting 4 message processors

In addition to the log file, the service starts an HTTP service for monitoring and debugging. The URL is available in the log file (see the “Diagnostics available” line above). The port is configurable through the http_server_port option in the configuration file.

The diagnostics are presented as a JSON formatted string. The diagnostics include operational information on the service itself, how long the service has been running, errors, and basic configuration information. An example output from the JSON status is shown below:

  "version": "3.0.0",
  "uptime": 145.617786697,
  "cmdline": [
  "connection_status": {
    "uptime": 145.471995845,
    "last_error_time": "0001-01-01T00:00:00Z",
    "last_error_text": "",
    "last_connect_time": "2015-12-08T00:22:56.566600876-05:00",
    "connected": true
  "error_count": 0,
  "input_event_count": 29,
  "memstats": {...},
  "output_event_count": 29,
  "output_status": {
    "type": "file",
    "format": "json",
    "file:/var/cb/data/event_bridge_output.json": {
      "file_name": "/var/cb/data/event_bridge_output.json",
      "last_open_time": "2015-12-08T00:22:56.430385291-05:00"
  "subscribed_events": [


This connector has been completely rewritten for version 3.0.0 for greatly enhanced reliability and performance. See the Event Forwarder 3.0.0 announcement for more information on upgrading from cb-event-forwarder 2.x.


The pre-built RPM is supported via our User eXchange (Jive) and via email to dev-support@carbonblack.com.

Last modified on February 1, 2016