I happened to look at my system.log today and I discovered that it is full of what appears to be full HTML pages, put there by webfilterproxyd. Here is an example of what I mean:

$ head /var/log/system.log

Oct 14 08:09:18 mac.local webfilterproxyd[21265]: page - result: <!DOCTYPE HTML PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.01 Transitional//EN" "http://www.w3.org/TR/html4/loose.dtd">
                    <!--    Applications (such as Dictionary.app) can recognize that a
                                    webpage has been restricted by looking for the following comment:       -->

                    <!-- com.apple.parentalcontrols.webcontentfilter.accessrestricted -->

                    <title>Access Restricted</title>
                    <meta http-equiv="Content-Type" content="text/html; charset=utf-8" />

                    <script type="text/javascript">

It's obviously caused by the parental controls, presumably our child clicks a link to some non-whitelists websites. Disabling these controls is not an option.

I can't filter this out (e.g. cat /var/log/system.log | grep -v "webfilterproxyd" | less) because all this HTML is on separate lines. This is making it very difficult to look through the log.

Worse still, it is so spammy that it is filled up my logs and rotating them out in a single day: for instance, at the moment there are 16 gzipped system.log files, all of which are around 3M compressed and which were created within a 15 minute period this morning. Obviously not very useful for reviewing for things like failed sshd attempts if logs are getting rotated out in such short order!

Why is this happening, and how do I make it stop?

  • Although I have no direct solution, you can use awk (or sed or other tools) to extract your html pages. For example, use this one-liner: awk '/<html>/,/<\/html>/' /var/log/system.log – CousinCocaine Oct 14 '15 at 19:48
  • @CousinCocaine Yeah, I can probably come up with something to filter this out... still, the amount of flooding means that even after removing all the flood only the most recent events since the kid logged off the computer are present. – Michael Oct 14 '15 at 19:50
  • True, and I have no clue how to fix it. It looks like webfilterproxyd is running verbose. Is this process created per user, or is there only one process running for the whole system? Might you can create a new user and see if it happens to that user as well. Sometimes 'resetting' safari works for console.log flooding. – CousinCocaine Oct 14 '15 at 19:54

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