Deleting old Rundeck logs / executions

Rundeck is an open source automation service with a web console, command line tools and a WebAPI. It lets you easily run automation tasks across a set of nodes.

It’s quite convenient to automate most of the tedious, repetitive maintenance and housekeeping tasks with Rundeck. Unfortunately if you use Rundeck for a long time, you might experience a huge amount of log files. As it turns out, Rundeck does not automatically clean up old log files. In my case, I had a task running like every 30 seconds. This lead to more than 150.000 executions and a few gigabytes of log files in a few days.

This behaviour isn’t new to the maintainers of Rundeck and there is / was an active discussion about this topic. The issue is concluded with the statement

the workaround is to use the rd executions deletebulk command.

Means: Build it your own and use the fancy Rundeck CLI to cleanup the old logs. Wait a sec… I could automate this and use Rundeck to clean Rundeck. This would be some kind of Rundeckception.

Fortunately Alex Simenduev alias shamil already dealt with this issue and published a suitable Gist:

#!/bin/bash -e

# export RD_URL= RD_USER=admin RD_PASSWORD=admin RD_HTTP_TIMEOUT=300

# make sure rd & jq commands are in the PATH
which -- rd jq >/dev/null

del_executions() {
    local project=$1

    while true; do
        rd executions deletebulk -y -m ${RD_OPTION_BATCH:-20} --older ${RD_OPTION_OLDER_THAN:-7d} -p $project || break
        sleep 1s

del_executions $1

exit 0

I made some minor adaptions to his original version, as the original loop had to be cancelled manually. The script requires the Rundeck CLI and jq to be available on the system. You can use the following Dockerfile as a quickstart for cleaning up your old Rundeck logs:

FROM thofer/rundeck-cli

    RD_USER=admin \
    RD_PASSWORD=admin \

COPY /tmp

RUN apt-get update -y && apt-get install -y jq
RUN chmod +x /tmp/

ENTRYPOINT ["/tmp/"]

Build it by putting both files ( and the Dockerfile) into the same directory:

docker build -t rdc
# rdc = rundeck-cleaner

And execute it afterwards by passing the respective ENVs with the targeted project name as the first argument:

docker run -it -e RD_URL= -e RD_PASSWORD=Unicorn rdc Housekeeping
# wheres as „Housekeeping“ would be the project name (refer to the Rundeck admin interface)