The EventDB is not a software itself.

The EventDB is a database (usually PostgreSQL) that gets filled with data from IntelMQ using the SQL Output Bot. Its core is the events table with the structure corresponding to the IntelMQ Data Format. Having the table created is required to use the EventDB.


IntelMQ comes with the intelmq_psql_initdb command line tool designed to help with creating the EventDB. It creates in the first line:

  • A CREATE TABLE events statement with all valid IntelMQ fields as columns and correct types

  • Several indexes as examples for a good read & search performance

Having an events table as outlined in the SQL file, IntelMQ’s SQL Output Bot can write all received events into this database table.

In addition, the script supports some additional features supporting use cases described later in this document:

For a full list of supported parameters, call the script help using -h parameter.

All elements of the generated SQL file can be adapted and extended before running the SQL file against a database, especially the indexes. Please review the generated script before applying.

Be aware that if you create tables using another DB user that is used later by the output bot, you may need to adjust ownership or privileges in the database. If you have problems with database permissions, refer to PostgreSQL documentation <https://www.postgresql.org/docs/current/ddl-priv.html>.

EventDB Utilities

Some scripts related to the EventDB are located in the contrib/eventdb folder in the IntelMQ git repository.

Apply Malware Name Mapping

The apply_mapping_eventdb.py script applies the malware name mapping to the EventDB. Source and destination columns can be given, also a local file. If no local file is present, the mapping can be downloaded on demand. It queries the database for all distinct malware names with the taxonomy “malicious-code” and sets another column to the malware family name.

Apply Domain Suffix

The apply_domain_suffix.py script writes the public domain suffix to the source.domain_suffix / destination.domain_suffix columns, extracted from source.fqdn / destination.fqdn.


The Python scripts can connect to a PostgreSQL server with an eventdb database and an events table. The command line arguments interface for both scripts are the same. See –help for more information:

apply_mapping_eventdb.py -h
apply_domain_suffix.py -h

PostgreSQL trigger

PostgreSQL trigger is a trigger keeping track of the oldest inserted/updated “time.source” data. This can be useful to (re-)generate statistics or aggregation data.

The SQL script can be executed in the database directly.

EventDB Statistics

The EventDB provides a great base for statistical analysis of the data.

The eventdb-stats repository contains a Python script that generates an HTML file and includes the Plotly JavaScript Open Source Graphing Library. By modifying the configuration file it is possible to configure various queries that are then displayed using graphs:

EventDB Statistics Example

Using EventDB with Timescale DB

Timescale DB is a PostgreSQL extension to add time-series support, which is quite handy as you don’t have to learn other syntaxes as you already know. You can use the SQL Queries as before, the extension will handle the rest. To see all limitations, please check the Timescale DB Documentation.

What is time-series?

Time-series has been invented as traditional database design like relational or nosql are not made for time-based data. A big benefit of time-series instead of other database designs over a time-based search pattern is the performance. As IntelMQ uses data based upon time, this design is awesome & will give you a performance boost.

How to choose the time column?

To utilize the time-series, choose a column containing the right time. This is then used by you for manual queries and graphs, and also by the database itself for organizing the data.

The IntelMQ Data Format has two fields that can be used for this: time.source or time.observation. Depending on your needs (tracking when the event occurred or when it was detected, if different), choose one of them.

You can use the intelmq_psql_initdb tool to generate SQL schema valid for TimescaleDB by passing the partitioning key:

intelmq_psql_initdb --partition-key "time.source"

How to setup?

Thanks to TimescaleDB, it’s very easy to setup.

  1. Choose your preferred Timescale DB environment & follow the installation instructions.

  2. Now lets create a hypertable, which is the timescale DB time-series structure. SELECT create_hypertable('', 'time.source');.

  3. Now our hypertable is setup & timescaleDB takes care of the rest. You can perform queries as usual, for further information please check Timescale DB Documentation.

How to upgrade from my existing database?

To update your existing database to use this awesome time-series feature, just follow the How to setup instruction. You can perform the hypertable command even on already existing databases. BUT there are some limitations from timescaleDB.

Separating raw values in PostgreSQL using view and trigger

In order to reduce the row size in the events table, the raw column’s data can be separated from the other columns. While the raw-data is about 30-50% of the data row’s size, it is not used in most database queries, as it serves only a backup functionality. Other possibilities to reduce or getting rid of this field are described in the FAQ, section Removing raw data for higher performance and less space usage.

The steps described here are best performed before the events table is filled with data, but can as well be done with existing data.

The approach requires four steps:

  1. An existing events table, see the first section of this document.

  2. Deleting or renaming the raw column of the events table.

  3. Creating a table raws which holds only the raw field of the events and linking both tables using the event_id.

  4. Creating the view v_events which joins the tables events and raws.

  5. Creating the function process_v_events_insert and INSERT trigger tr_events.

The last steps brings us several advantages:

  • All INSERT statements can contain all data, including the raw field.

  • No code changes are needed in the IntelMQ output bot or your own scripts. A migration is seamless.

  • PostgreSQL itself ensures that the data of both tables is consistent and linked correctly.

The complete SQL script can be generated using intelmq_psql_initdb. It does not cover step 2 to avoid accidental data loss - you need to do this step manually.