Inspecting Nginx Logs with GoAccess and MaxMind GeoIP Data

287 words; 2 minute(s)

Table of Contents


GoAccess is an open source real-time web log analyzer and interactive viewer that runs in a terminal in *nix systems or through your browser.


To start, you'll need to install GoAccess for your OS. Here's an example for Debian-based distros:

sudo apt install goaccess

Next, find any number of the MaxMind GeoIP database files on GitHub or another file hosting website. We're going to use P3TERX's version in this example:


Be sure to save this file in an easy to remember location!


In order to utilize the full capabilities of GoAccess and MMDB, start with the command template below and customize as necessary. This will export an HTML view of the GoAccess dashboard, showing all relevant information related to that site's access log. You can also omit the -o output.html parameter if you prefer to view the data within the CLI instead of creating an HTML file.

With the addition of the GeoIP Database parameter, section 16 - Geo Location will be added with the various countries that are associated with the collected IP addresses.

zcat /var/log/nginx/example.access.log.*.gz | goaccess     \
--geoip-database=/home/user/GeoLite2-City.mmdb             \
--date-format=%d/%b/%Y                                     \
--time-format=%H:%M:%S                                     \
--log-format=COMBINED                                      \
-o output.html                                             \
/var/log/nginx/example.access.log -

Example Output

See below for an example of the HTML output:


You can also see the GeoIP card created by the integration of the MaxMind database information.


That's all there is to it! Informational data is provided in an organized fashion with minimal effort.