Troubleshoot VPC Flow Logs - Amazon Virtual Private Cloud
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Troubleshoot VPC Flow Logs

The following are possible issues you might have when working with flow logs.

Incomplete flow log records


Your flow log records are incomplete, or are no longer being published.


There might be a problem delivering the flow logs to the CloudWatch Logs log group.


In either the Amazon EC2 console or the Amazon VPC console, choose the Flow Logs tab for the relevant resource. For more information, see View a flow log. The flow logs table displays any errors in the Status column. Alternatively, use the describe-flow-logs command, and check the value that's returned in the DeliverLogsErrorMessage field. One of the following errors might be displayed:

  • Rate limited: This error can occur if CloudWatch Logs throttling has been applied — when the number of flow log records for a network interface is higher than the maximum number of records that can be published within a specific timeframe. This error can also occur if you've reached the quota for the number of CloudWatch Logs log groups that you can create. For more information, see CloudWatch Service Quotas in the Amazon CloudWatch User Guide.

  • Access error: This error can occur for one of the following reasons:

    • The IAM role for your flow log does not have sufficient permissions to publish flow log records to the CloudWatch log group

    • The IAM role does not have a trust relationship with the flow logs service

    • The trust relationship does not specify the flow logs service as the principal

    For more information, see IAM role for publishing flow logs to CloudWatch Logs.

  • Unknown error: An internal error has occurred in the flow logs service.

Flow log is active, but no flow log records or log group


You created a flow log, and the Amazon VPC or Amazon EC2 console displays the flow log as Active. However, you cannot see any log streams in CloudWatch Logs or log files in your Amazon S3 bucket.

Possible causes
  • The flow log is still being created. In some cases, it can take ten minutes or more after you create the flow log for the log group to be created, and for data to be displayed.

  • There has been no traffic recorded for your network interfaces yet. The log group in CloudWatch Logs is only created when traffic is recorded.


Wait a few minutes for the log group to be created, or for traffic to be recorded.

'LogDestinationNotFoundException' or 'Access Denied for LogDestination' error


You get a Access Denied for LogDestination or a LogDestinationNotFoundException error when you create a flow log.

Possible causes
  • When creating a flow log that publishes data to an Amazon S3 bucket, this error indicates that the specified S3 bucket could not be found or that the bucket policy does not allow logs to be delivered to the bucket.

  • When creating a flow log that publishes data to Amazon CloudWatch Logs, this error indicates that the IAM role does not allow logs to be delivered to the log group.

  • When publishing to Amazon S3, ensure that you have specified the ARN for an existing S3 bucket, and that the ARN is in the correct format. If you do not own the S3 bucket, verify that the bucket policy has the required permissions and uses the correct account ID and bucket name in the ARN.

  • When publishing to CloudWatch Logs, verify that the IAM role has the required permissions.

Exceeding the Amazon S3 bucket policy limit


You get the following error when you try to create a flow log: LogDestinationPermissionIssueException.

Possible causes

Amazon S3 bucket policies are limited to 20 KB in size.

Each time that you create a flow log that publishes to an Amazon S3 bucket, we automatically add the specified bucket ARN, which includes the folder path, to the Resource element in the bucket's policy.

Creating multiple flow logs that publish to the same bucket could cause you to exceed the bucket policy limit.

  • Clean up the bucket policy by removing the flow log entries that are no longer needed.

  • Grant permissions to the entire bucket by replacing the individual flow log entries with the following.


    If you grant permissions to the entire bucket, new flow log subscriptions do not add new permissions to the bucket policy.

LogDestination undeliverable


You get the following error when you try to create a flow log: LogDestination <bucket name> is undeliverable.

Possible causes

The target Amazon S3 bucket is encrypted using server-side encryption with Amazon KMS (SSE-KMS) and the default encryption of the bucket is a KMS key ID.


The value must be a KMS key ARN. Change the default S3 encryption type from KMS key ID to KMS key ARN. For more information, see Configuring default encryption in the Amazon Simple Storage Service User Guide.