BigPanda Query Language (BPQL)

Use tag values to build search and condition filters

A keyword search looks for a value in descriptions, source system names, incident comments and in any tag—in contrast to a BPQL query, which looks for a value in a specific tag. For tags that contain multiple values, a keyword search identifies matches if any of the values match the search term.

Where To Use BPQL

Use BPQL to construct advanced query strings:

Syntax Rules

Basic Queries

The basic syntax for a query with a single condition is: <tag> <operator> <value>. For example:
host = srv-ny-1

Tags and values are not case sensitive.

When searching for comments, you can use "comment" as a tag to search for comments specific to a particular incident.

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Finding Tag Names

The available tags can vary based on the source system and integration. To find the tag names for an integration, you can view an alert in the BigPanda UI or reference the documentation on standard tags. On the Search tab, the search bar displays suggested tags and relevant system names as you type.

Multiple Conditions and Precedence of Operators (Parentheses)

For multiple conditions, use any combination of AND and OR to combine terms in a query. For example:
host=srv-1 AND check=chk-1

Use parentheses (( )) to set precedence to a part of the query. For example:
host=srv-1 AND (check=chk-1 OR check=chk-2 OR check=chk-3)

You can use nested parentheses. For example:
host=srv-1 AND (check=chk-1 OR (check=chk-2 AND status=critical))

Tag Names with Spaces and Special Characters

Spaces, periods, and special characters are not supported when querying tag names. When creating multi-word tags, spaces should be removed or replaced with underscores. To learn more, see the Tag Naming Requirements in our Enrichment user guide.

Tag NameSearchable
servicelevelYes
service_levelYes
service levelNo
service.levelNo
servicelevel!No

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Reserved Words

BPQL does not support the use of most BigPanda Reserved Words such as incident_identifier or primary_property

source_system can be used in BPQL to create correlation patterns, custom tags, and unified searches.
description can be used in BPQL to create extraction enrichment tags.

Value Phrases with Spaces

Use quotes (" or ') around an exact phrase that contains spaces. Spaces are allowed only between quotes. For example, to search for checks containing CPU over 90%:
check="CPU over 90%"

You can use special characters between quotes.

Wildcards

Use an asterisk as a wildcard to match multiple values that contain a common element. For example, to search for hosts that end with .host1.com.
host=*.host1.com

To search for hosts that start with db and end with .domain1.com.
host=db*.domain1.com

To search for hosts that contain prod:
host=_prod_

Asterisks will function as wildcards even if enclosed in quotes (" or ')

Special Characters

Use quotes (" or ') around an exact phrase that contains any of the following special characters:
= " ' | : \ / ( ) { } [ ] ^ ~ ? , < >`

For example, to search for a specific URL:
url="<https://my.domain.com/businessapp">

The special characters within quotes will act as literal text.

Regular Expressions (Regex)

Use a slash (/) as the first and last character to search for values that match a regex; for example, host = /<regex pattern>/.

Use a regex to find values that match a certain pattern. For example, this regex query looks for host values with any three characters followed by abc then by any 3 digits:
host=/...abc[0-9]{3}/

Regex queries are limited to 32,000 characters or less; values above this limit are trimmed.

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Regex Syntax

BigPanda searches follow the Elasticsearch Regular Expression Syntax. This syntax has some differences compared to other common regex engines, including:

  • Values are case sensitive. Patterns must be entered with the correct character case for the query to match. Other searches in BigPanda, including wildcards and exact phrases, are case insensitive.
  • Queries require the entire pattern to obtain a match. Regex queries do not match on partial patterns because the start (^) and end patterns ($) are always assumed.
  • Queries with \s, \d, or \w are not supported.

Search for Tags with Empty Values

A specific regex search syntax needs to be used when searching for tags with empty values:
host != /[a-zA-Z0-9]+/

Operators

Operator

Description

Example

=
:

Equals

host=srv-ny-1
host:srv-ny-1

!=

Not equal

host!=srv-ny-1

===

Strict match; true for all alerts in an incident

host===srv-1

IN
in

Equal to one of the values in a list

host IN [srv-1, srv-2]
host in [srv-1, srv-2]

NOT IN
not in

Not equal to any of the values in a list

host NOT IN [srv-1, srv-2]
host not in [srv-1, srv-2]

OR
or

At least one of the conditions is true

host=srv-1 OR host=srv-2
host=srv-1 or host=srv-2

AND
and

All of the conditions are true

host=srv-1 AND check=chk-1
host=srv-1 and check=chk-1

Strict Match vs. Equals

Strict match criteria must be met by all alerts within an incident, while an equals (=) search finds incidents that have at least one matching alert, even if other alerts do not match the criteria.

For example:

If the strict match criteria is host==="prod-1"

Incidents where all alerts are from the prod-1 host are listed as results.

Any incidents where only some of the alerts match do not appear in the results.

The below table compares a strict match and an equals search results for this query:

Example Incidents

Strict Match (host==="prod-1")

Equals Match (host="prod-1")

Incident 1 contains:
Alert 1 on host = prod-1
Alert 2 on host = prod-1

  • Alert 3 on host = prod-1

Incident 2 contains:
Alert 1 on host = prod-1
Alert 2 on host = prod-2

  • Alert 3 on host = prod-1

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Strict match considers all alerts in the incident regardless of status

Strict match considers both active and inactive alerts in an incident. If the active alerts in an incident meet the criteria and the inactive alerts don't, the incident does not match.

Keyword Searches

A keyword search looks for a value in descriptions, source system names, and in any tag—in contrast to a BPQL query, which looks for a value in a specific tag. For tags that contain multiple values, a keyword search will return a match if any of the values match the search term.

You can use an asterisk (*) as a wildcard to match multiple values that contain a common element.

For example:

phx*db

would return for both phx.db and phx!db

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Keyword searches can find exact search terms between special characters without using wildcards. For example, if you search for api, it matches all tags, source system names, and descriptions where api is present between special characters, such as prod-api-1 and web-api. You do not need to use wildcards; for example, _api_.

You can use quotes (" or ') around an exact phrase that contains spaces. Spaces are allowed only between quotes. For example:

"CPU over 90*"

You can use a slash (/) as the first and last character to search for values that match a regex. Regular expressions are case sensitive and are limited to 32,000 characters. For example:

/...Phx[0-9]{3}/

Next Steps

Learn about searching in BigPanda using the Unified Search Tab

Learn how to create Correlation Patterns using BPQL.

Find information about BigPanda Formula Language (BPFL)