How to Install Sysdig on Debian 12/11/10

Sysdig is an innovative, powerful, and versatile monitoring and troubleshooting solution that caters to the needs of modern containerized environments. It is designed to provide complete visibility and deep insights into your infrastructure, applications, and services, allowing you to easily manage your system’s performance, security, and compliance. Sysdig is an essential tool for DevOps and IT professionals who want to ensure the smooth operation of their systems.

Here are some of the key features and differentiators of Sysdig that set it apart from other monitoring solutions:

  • Container-native: Sysdig has been built from the ground up to support containerized environments, specifically those using Kubernetes, Docker, and other container platforms. This native support makes it seamless and easy to monitor and troubleshoot container-based applications and services.
  • Deep system visibility: Sysdig offers a comprehensive view of your infrastructure, enabling you to dive deep into the system’s metrics, logs, events, and network data. With Sysdig, you can quickly identify performance bottlenecks, security threats, and other issues that might be affecting your environment.
  • Flexible deployment options: Sysdig can be deployed either on-premises or in the cloud, offering you the flexibility to choose the best option for your organization. Its compatibility with various platforms, such as AWS, GCP, and Azure, ensures easy integration with your existing infrastructure.
  • Advanced analytics and alerting: Sysdig’s sophisticated analytics engine allows you to create custom dashboards, visualizations, and alerts based on a wide range of data sources. This makes it easy to track and analyze the performance and health of your infrastructure, applications, and services in real-time.
  • Security and compliance: Sysdig incorporates robust security features to help you protect your environment against threats and maintain compliance with industry standards. Its integrated threat detection, runtime security, and compliance monitoring capabilities ensure that your infrastructure remains safe and secure at all times.

The following guide will demonstrate how to install Sysdig on Debian 12 Bookworm, Debian 11 Bullseye, or Debian 10 Buster using the Sysdig APT repository for the latest version and for future updates.

Section 1: Install Sysdig on Debian

Step 1: Update the Debian System

Before proceeding with the installation of Sysdig, it is essential to ensure that your Debian system is up to date. This ensures that all existing packages are updated to their latest versions, improving your system’s stability and security. To update your system, execute the following command in your terminal:

sudo apt update && sudo apt upgrade

Step 2: Install Required Packages

To successfully install Sysdig on your Debian system, you will need to install some prerequisite software packages. These packages enable proper functionality and integration of Sysdig with your system. Run the following command in your terminal to install the required packages:

sudo apt install software-properties-common apt-transport-https ca-certificates ncurses-term dkms -y

Step 3: Import Sysdig Repository

By default, Sysdig is not available in the Debian’s official repository. However, a dedicated repository exists, maintained by the developers of Sysdig. To add this repository to your system, follow these steps:

Import the GPG key: The GPG key ensures the authenticity and integrity of the packages downloaded from the Sysdig repository. Run the following command to import the GPG key:

curl -s | gpg --dearmor | sudo tee /usr/share/keyrings/sysdig.gpg

Add the Sysdig repository: After importing the GPG key, you can add the Sysdig repository to your system’s sources list by running the following command:

echo 'deb [signed-by=/usr/share/keyrings/sysdig.gpg] stable-$(ARCH)/' | sudo tee /etc/apt/sources.list.d/sysdig.list

Note that the $(ARCH) variable will be automatically replaced with the appropriate architecture that Sysdig currently supports.

Step 4: Update Package List

After adding the Sysdig repository to your system, update your package list to include the newly added repository. This ensures that the Sysdig package will be available for installation. To update the package list, run the following command:

sudo apt update

Step 5: Install Sysdig

Now that you have added the Sysdig repository to your system and updated the package list, you can proceed with the installation of Sysdig. To do so, run the following command in your terminal:

sudo apt install linux-headers-$(uname -r) sysdig -y

This command installs the appropriate Linux headers for your kernel version and the Sysdig package itself. The installation process should be relatively quick and should not take longer than a few minutes at most.

Step 6: Verify Sysdig Installation

After completing the installation, verifying that Sysdig has been installed correctly on your Debian system is essential. To check the version and build of Sysdig, run the following command in your terminal:

sysdig --version

Section 2: Sysdig Commands

Sysdig offers a wide range of commands that allow you to monitor and troubleshoot your containerized environments effectively. This section will explore some of the most useful Sysdig commands, divided into several categories for easy understanding. The examples provided will help you start using Sysdig commands for various purposes.

Basic Sysdig Commands

Before diving into more advanced features, let’s start with some basic Sysdig commands that help you understand your system’s overall status.

List Running Processes

To display a list of currently running processes on your system, use the following command:

sysdig -l

This command will output a list of running processes, providing you with an overview of the current state of your system.

Monitor System Activity

If you want to monitor your system’s real-time activity, you can use the following command:

sysdig -c topprocs_cpu

This command will display the top processes consuming the most CPU resources, helping you quickly identify resource-intensive applications and potential performance bottlenecks.

Filtering Sysdig Output

Sysdig allows you to apply filters to the output, enabling you to focus on specific processes, containers, or events of interest. Here are some examples of using filters with Sysdig commands:


Filter by Container Name

Similarly, you can filter the output to display events related to a specific container. To do so, use the filter as shown in the following example:


Replace my_container with the actual name of the container you want to monitor.

Advanced Sysdig Commands

Sysdig also offers advanced commands that provide deeper insights into your containerized environments. Let’s explore some of these commands.

Monitor File I/O Activity

To monitor file I/O activity on your system, you can use the spy_file Sysdig command. This command will display information about files being accessed, the processes accessing them, and the I/O operations performed. To use this command, run:

sysdig -c spy_file

Analyze Network Connections

Sysdig can help you analyze your system’s network connections and detect potential issues or security threats. To display information about network connections, use the netstat command as follows:

sysdig -c netstat

This command will output a list of active network connections, including the source and destination IP addresses, ports, and connection state.

Creating Custom Sysdig Views

Sysdig allows you to create custom views, enabling you to focus on specific metrics and data points that are relevant to your needs. Here’s an example of creating a custom Sysdig view:

Custom View for CPU Usage

To create a custom view that displays the CPU usage of processes, use the following command:

sysdig -c topprocs_cpu "evt.type=execve and"

Replace my_process with the actual name of the process you want to monitor.

This custom view will display the top processes consuming the most CPU resources, filtered by the specified process name. You can further customize this view by modifying the filter or adding additional metrics as needed.

Section 3: cSysdig Commands

cSysdig is an interactive, terminal-based user interface for Sysdig that provides a more user-friendly way to navigate system metrics and events. cSysdig commands are similar to Sysdig commands but are executed within the cSysdig interface rather than the terminal directly. This section will introduce you to cSysdig and some essential commands and features you can use within the interface.

Step 1: Launching cSysdig

To launch cSysdig, run the following command in your terminal:


Note: Depending on your user privileges, you may need to add sudo before the command to launch cSysdig with administrative permissions.

This will open the cSysdig interface, where you can start exploring various views and execute cSysdig commands.

Step 2: Navigating the cSysdig Interface

cSysdig organizes information into several built-in views, each focusing on a specific aspect of your system. You can switch between these views using the F2 key or by typing : followed by the view name.

Here are some essential cSysdig views:

  • Processes: Displays a list of running processes and their resource usage. (Shortcut: :processes)
  • Connections: Shows active network connections, including source and destination IP addresses, ports, and connection state. (Shortcut: :connections)
  • Errors: Highlights system errors and exceptions. (Shortcut: :errors)
  • Containers: Lists running containers and their resource usage. (Shortcut: :containers)

Step 3: cSysdig Commands and Shortcuts

cSysdig provides several commands and shortcuts that help you navigate the interface and interact with the displayed data. Here are some useful cSysdig commands and shortcuts:

  • F1 or h: Display the help menu, providing an overview of available commands and shortcuts.
  • F2 or v: Switch between available views.
  • F4 or l: Apply a filter to the current view. For example, you can filter processes by their name or containers by their ID.
  • F5 or s: Sort the current view by a specific column.
  • F6 or a: Add or remove columns from the current view.
  • Esc or q: Quit cSysdig or close the current menu.

Step 4: Creating Custom Views in cSysdig

Just like with Sysdig, you can create custom views in cSysdig to focus on specific metrics and data points relevant to your needs. To create a custom view, follow these steps:

  1. Press F2 or type :addview to open the “Add View” menu.
  2. Enter a name for your custom view.
  3. Define the columns you want to include in your view by typing the respective column names.
  4. Optionally, add a filter to your custom view by pressing F4 and entering the filter criteria.
  5. Save your custom view by pressing Enter.

You can now switch to your custom view using the F2 key or by typing :your_view_name.

Example of Sysdig configuration menu on Debian:

Section 4: Additional Commands for Sysdig on Debian

In this section, we will cover some additional commands that you may find useful when working with Sysdig on Debian. These commands include updating, removing, and managing Sysdig’s installation on your system.

How to Update Sysdig

Since you have imported the official APT repository for Sysdig, updating the software is quick and straightforward. To update Sysdig, run the following standard APT commands as you would when updating any other system package:

sudo apt update && sudo apt upgrade

This command will ensure that Sysdig and all other installed packages on your system are up to date.

How to Remove Sysdig

If you no longer require Sysdig on your system, follow these steps to remove it:

Uninstall Sysdig:Use the following command to remove the Sysdig package from your system:

sudo apt remove sysdig

Remove the GPG key:

To remove the GPG key used to authenticate Sysdig packages, run the following command:

sudo rm /usr/share/keyrings/sysdig.gpg

Remove the repository:

Finally, remove the Sysdig repository from your system by executing the following command:

sudo rm /etc/apt/sources.list.d/sysdig.list

Conclusion: Installing Sysdig on Debian

This guide covered installing Sysdig on Debian Linux, including Debian 12 Bookworm, Debian 11 Bullseye, and Debian 10 Buster. We have demonstrated how to update your system, install required packages, import the Sysdig repository, and install Sysdig using the APT repository for the latest version and future updates. We have also discussed various Sysdig commands, explored the interactive terminal-based interface of cSysdig, and provided instructions for updating and removing Sysdig from your system.

By following this guide, you should now understand how to install and use Sysdig on Debian Linux to monitor, troubleshoot, and secure your containerized environments effectively.

Additional Resources and Links

Here is a list of official resources and links that you may find useful for further learning and expanding your knowledge of Sysdig:

  • Sysdig Official Website: Visit the Sysdig website for more information about the product, its features, and pricing.
  • Sysdig Documentation: Access the comprehensive Sysdig documentation to explore various topics, such as installation, usage, and troubleshooting.
  • Sysdig GitHub Repository: Browse the official Sysdig GitHub repository to find the source code, report issues, and contribute to the project.
  • Sysdig Blog: Stay up-to-date with the latest news, articles, and tutorials on the Sysdig blog.
  • Sysdig on Twitter: Follow Sysdig on Twitter for updates, news, and other announcements related to the project.

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