4. Upgrading

4.1. General instructions

Suricata can be upgraded by simply installing the new version to the same locations as the already installed version. When installing from source, this means passing the same --prefix, --sysconfdir, --localstatedir and --datadir options to configure.

$ suricata --build-info|grep -A 3 '\-\-prefix'
    --prefix                                 /usr
    --sysconfdir                             /etc
    --localstatedir                          /var
    --datarootdir                            /usr/share

4.1.1. Configuration Updates

New versions of Suricata will occasionally include updated config files: classification.config and reference.config. Since the Suricata installation will not overwrite these if they exist, they must be manually updated. If there are no local modifications they can simply be overwritten by the ones Suricata supplies.

Major updates include new features, new default settings and often also remove features. This upgrade guide covers the changes that might have an impact of migrating from an older version and keeping the config. We encourage you to also check all the new features that have been added but are not covered by this guide. Those features are either not enabled by default or require dedicated new configuration.

4.2. Upgrading 7.0 to 8.0


stats.whitelist has been renamed to stats.score in eve.json

4.2.1. Major changes

  • SIP parser has been updated to inspect traffic carried by TCP as well. SIP keywords can still match on their respective fields in addition to these improvements. Transactions are logged with the same schema regardless of which transport protocol is carrying the payload. Also, SIP protocol is detected using pattern matching and not only probing parser.

  • SIP_PORTS variable has been introduced in suricata.yaml

  • Application layer's sip counter has been split into sip_tcp and sip_udp for the stats event.

  • Stats counters that are 0 can now be hidden from EVE logs. Default behavior still logs those (see EVE Output - Stats for configuration setting).

  • SDP parser and logger have been introduced. Due to SDP being encapsulated within other protocols, such as SIP, they cannot be directly enabled or disabled. Instead, both the SDP parser and logger depend on being invoked by another parser (or logger).

  • ARP decoder and logger have been introduced. Since ARP can be quite verbose and produce many events, the logger is disabled by default.

  • It is possible to see an increase of alerts, for the same rule-sets, if you use many stream/payload rules, due to Suricata triggering TCP stream reassembly earlier.

4.3. Upgrading 6.0 to 7.0

4.3.1. Major changes

  • Upgrade of PCRE1 to PCRE2. See Changes from PCRE1 to PCRE2 for more details.

  • IPS users: by default various new "exception policies" are set to DROP traffic. Please see Exception Policies for details on the settings and their scope. For trouble shooting, please check My traffic gets blocked after upgrading to Suricata 7.

  • New protocols enabled by default: bittorrent-dht, quic, http2.

  • The telnet protocol is also enabled by default, but only for the app-layer.

  • Spaces are accepted in HTTP1 URIs instead of in the protocol version. That is: GET /a b HTTP/1.1 gets now URI as /a b and protocol as HTTP/1.1 when it used to be URI as /a and protocol as b HTTP/1.1

4.3.2. Security changes

  • suricata.yaml now prevents process creation by Suricata by default with security.limit-noproc. The suricata.yaml configuration file needs to be updated to enable this feature. For more info, see Configuration hardening.

  • Absolute filenames and filenames containing parent directory traversal are no longer allowed by default for datasets when the filename is specified as part of a rule. See Datasets Security and Datasets File Locations for more information.

  • Lua rules are now disabled by default (change also introduced in 6.0.13), see Lua Scripting for Detection.

4.3.3. Removals

  • The libprelude output plugin has been removed.

  • EVE DNS v1 logging support has been removed. If still using EVE DNS v1 logging, see the manual section on DNS logging configuration for the current configuration options: DNS EVE Configuration

4.3.4. Logging changes

  • IKEv2 Eve logging changed, the event_type has become ike which covers both protocol versions. The fields errors and notify have moved to ike.ikev2.errors and ike.ikev2.notify.

  • FTP DATA metadata for alerts are now logged in ftp_data instead of root.

  • Alert xff field is now logged as alert.xff for alerts instead of at the root.

  • Protocol values and their names are built into Suricata instead of using the system's /etc/protocols file. Some names and casing may have changed in the values proto in eve.json log entries and other logs containing protocol names and values. See https://redmine.openinfosecfoundation.org/issues/4267 for more information.

  • Logging of additional HTTP headers configured through the EVE http.custom option will now be logged in the request_headers and/or response_headers respectively instead of merged into the existing http object. In Suricata 6.0, a configuration like:

      custom: [Server]

    would result in a log entry like:

    "http": {
      "hostname": "suricata.io",
      "http_method": "GET",
      "protocol": "HTTP/1/1",
      "server": "nginx",

    This merging of custom headers in the http object could result in custom headers overwriting standard fields in the http object, or a response header overwriting request header.

    To prevent the possibility of fields being overwritten, all custom headers are now logged into the request_headers and response_headers arrays to avoid any chance of collision. This also facilitates the logging of headers that may appear multiple times, with each occurrence being logged in future releases (see note below).

    While these arrays are not new in Suricata 7.0, they had previously been used exclusively for the dump-all-headers option.

    As of Suricata 7.0, the above configuration example will now be logged like:

    "http": {
      "hostname": "suricata.io",
      "http_method": "GET",
      "protocol": "HTTP/1/1",
      "response_headers": [
        { "name": "Server", "value": "nginx" }

    Effectively making the custom option a subset of the dump-all-headers option.

    If you've been using the custom option, this may represent a breaking change. However, if you haven't used it, there will be no change in the output.


    Currently, if the same HTTP header is seen multiple times, the values are concatenated into a comma-separated value.

    For more information, refer to: https://redmine.openinfosecfoundation.org/issues/1275.

4.3.5. Deprecations

  • Multiple "include" fields in the configuration file will now issue a warning and in Suricata 8.0 will not be supported. See Includes for documentation on including multiple files.

  • For AF-Packet, the cluster_rollover setting is no longer supported. Configuration settings using cluster_rollover will cause a warning message and act as though cluster_flow` was specified. Please update your configuration settings.

4.3.6. Other changes

  • Experimental keyword http2.header is removed. http.header, http.request_header, and http.response_header are to be used.

  • NSS is no longer required. File hashing and JA3 can now be used without the NSS compile time dependency.

  • If installing Suricata without the bundled Suricata-Update, the default-rule-path has been changed from /etc/suricata/rules to /var/lib/suricata/rules to be consistent with Suricata when installed with Suricata-Update.

  • FTP has been updated with a maximum command request and response line length of 4096 bytes. To change the default see FTP.

  • SWF decompression in http has been disabled by default. To change the default see Configure HTTP (libhtp). Users with configurations from previous releases may want to modify their config to match the new default. See https://redmine.openinfosecfoundation.org/issues/5632 for more information.

  • The new option livedev is enabled by default with use-for-tracking being set to true. This should be disabled if multiple live devices are used to capture traffic from the same network.

4.4. Upgrading 5.0 to 6.0

  • SIP now enabled by default

  • RDP now enabled by default

  • ERSPAN Type I enabled by default.

4.4.1. Major changes

  • New protocols enabled by default: mqtt, rfb

  • SSH Client fingerprinting for SSH clients

  • Conditional logging

  • Initial HTTP/2 support

  • DCERPC logging

  • Improved EVE logging performance

4.4.2. Removals

4.4.3. Performance

4.5. Upgrading 4.1 to 5.0

4.5.1. Major changes

  • New protocols enabled by default: snmp (new config only)

  • New protocols disabled by default: rdp, sip

  • New defaults for protocols: nfs, smb, tftp, krb5 ntp are all enabled by default (new config only)

  • VXLAN decoder enabled by default. To disable, set decoder.vxlan.enabled to false.

  • HTTP LZMA support enabled by default. To disable, set lzma-enabled to false in each of the libhtp configurations in use.

  • classification.config updated. ET 5.0 ruleset will use this.

  • decoder event counters use 'decoder.event' as prefix now. This can be controlled using the stats.decoder-events-prefix setting.

4.5.2. Removals

  • dns-log, the text dns log. Use EVE.dns instead.

  • file-log, the non-EVE JSON file log. Use EVE.files instead.

  • drop-log, the non-EVE JSON drop log.

See https://suricata.io/about/deprecation-policy/