Looking For Graphing Tools

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I have bazillions of incoming (rejected) attempts to connect to my SMTP server, and I’m interested in separating out those that seem to come in huge bunches (e.g., the one from yesterday that ran for about 10 hours and sent over 4100 attempts), and graphing them so I can see the spacing and/or distribution in time.

I can figure out some simple scripting to turn the maillog entries into times since the epoch, or other formats, if needed, but I have no experience with the various graphing tools availabe, or even what (or where) they are.

I’d appreciate pointers-and-or-advice, should any of you have any such things to give.

thanks in advance!


6 thoughts on - Looking For Graphing Tools

  • Hey Fred,

    If you can organize your data into a spreadsheet you can use the built in graphing abilities of LibreOffice Calc. That should be sufficient for a limited use application like you are describing.

    I use LibreOffice Calc to make an hourly graph of my Internet upload and download speed performance.

  • mrtg would be a simple option. It’s designed for graphing network traffic but can be used to graph anything you like. There are examples in the contrib directory.

  • mrtg is very obsolete, and has been replaced with rrdtool, and integrated realtime graphing systems like cacti and librenms

  • If you are talking about scripting graphs, then Gnuplot is what you need – it’s in the core CentOS distro I think.

    If you want a dedicated gui graphing application, then you can’t go far wrong with Grace – it’s in EPEL. I’ve used it for producing publication quality plots but it’s equally capable of dealing with everyday graphing. The native save file format is simple and plain text, so it’s quite easy to generate the files using a script which can then be read straight in to grace and will have correct axes, lables, etc.


  • another tool i’ve used for creating various sorts of graphs is Gnu Octave. this is a matlab replacement, and if you can import a bunch of numbers, you can graph them 8 ways from sideways.

  • Am 19.06.2017 um 21:26 schrieb Fred Smith:

    Out of the box: mailgraph


    There are forks which implement newer anti-spam implementations like Postfix’s postscreen.

    See an example here


    Something more generic but powerful: Prometheus with Grafana

    It works with a time series database in the background and is the de-facto standard in DevOps environments. With a Google image search for Grafana you find a lot of examples how it looks like.

    If the application does not provide the necessary metrics itself for Prometheus then an exporter is required. You find some for Postfix. Prometheus will scrape the exported metrics and within Grafana you can easily add nice and useful graphs into your dashboards.