PutRetentionPolicy - Amazon CloudWatch Logs
Services or capabilities described in Amazon Web Services documentation might vary by Region. To see the differences applicable to the China Regions, see Getting Started with Amazon Web Services in China (PDF).


Sets the retention of the specified log group. With a retention policy, you can configure the number of days for which to retain log events in the specified log group.


CloudWatch Logs doesn’t immediately delete log events when they reach their retention setting. It typically takes up to 72 hours after that before log events are deleted, but in rare situations might take longer.

To illustrate, imagine that you change a log group to have a longer retention setting when it contains log events that are past the expiration date, but haven’t been deleted. Those log events will take up to 72 hours to be deleted after the new retention date is reached. To make sure that log data is deleted permanently, keep a log group at its lower retention setting until 72 hours after the previous retention period ends. Alternatively, wait to change the retention setting until you confirm that the earlier log events are deleted.

When log events reach their retention setting they are marked for deletion. After they are marked for deletion, they do not add to your archival storage costs anymore, even if they are not actually deleted until later. These log events marked for deletion are also not included when you use an API to retrieve the storedBytes value to see how many bytes a log group is storing.

Request Syntax

{ "logGroupName": "string", "retentionInDays": number }

Request Parameters

For information about the parameters that are common to all actions, see Common Parameters.

The request accepts the following data in JSON format.


The name of the log group.

Type: String

Length Constraints: Minimum length of 1. Maximum length of 512.

Pattern: [\.\-_/#A-Za-z0-9]+

Required: Yes


The number of days to retain the log events in the specified log group. Possible values are: 1, 3, 5, 7, 14, 30, 60, 90, 120, 150, 180, 365, 400, 545, 731, 1096, 1827, 2192, 2557, 2922, 3288, and 3653.

To set a log group so that its log events do not expire, use DeleteRetentionPolicy.

Type: Integer

Required: Yes

Response Elements

If the action is successful, the service sends back an HTTP 200 response with an empty HTTP body.


For information about the errors that are common to all actions, see Common Errors.


A parameter is specified incorrectly.

HTTP Status Code: 400


Multiple concurrent requests to update the same resource were in conflict.

HTTP Status Code: 400


The specified resource does not exist.

HTTP Status Code: 400


The service cannot complete the request.

HTTP Status Code: 500


To create or update a retention policy for a log group

The following example creates a 30-day retention policy for the specified log group.

Sample Request

POST / HTTP/1.1 Host: logs.<region>.<domain> X-Amz-Date: <DATE> Authorization: AWS4-HMAC-SHA256 Credential=<Credential>, SignedHeaders=content-type;date;host;user-agent;x-amz-date;x-amz-target;x-amzn-requestid, Signature=<Signature> User-Agent: <UserAgentString> Accept: application/json Content-Type: application/x-amz-json-1.1 Content-Length: <PayloadSizeBytes> Connection: Keep-Alive X-Amz-Target: Logs_20140328.PutRetentionPolicy { "logGroupName": "my-log-group", "retentionInDays": 30 }

Sample Response

HTTP/1.1 200 OK x-amzn-RequestId: <RequestId> Content-Type: application/x-amz-json-1.1 Content-Length: <PayloadSizeBytes> Date: <Date>

See Also

For more information about using this API in one of the language-specific Amazon SDKs, see the following: