Relic Solution: What does `com.newrelic ERROR: Received a ForceRestartException` mean?

Introduction

Hello! My name is Giselle and I am a Java Technical Support Engineer. Today we’re going to talk about a commonly seen newrelic_agent.log message known as a ForceRestartException.

Are you seeing a log message like this and wondering what it means? You’re not alone!

com.newrelic ERROR: Received a ForceRestartException: com.newrelic.agent.ForceRestartException: . The agent will attempt to reconnect for data reporting. If this message continues, please contact support@newrelic.com.

Hold on - sure it says contact support, but before you do that, check to see how often you are seeing the message. Is it sporadic and followed by log lines similar to this?

com.newrelic INFO: Collector redirection to collector-010.newrelic.com:443
com.newrelic INFO: Agent run id: [RUN_ID_HERE]
com.newrelic INFO: Agent … connected to collector.newrelic.com:443
com.newrelic INFO: Reporting to:
https://rpm.newrelic.com/accounts/[ACCOUNT_NUMBER]/applications/[APPLICATION_NUMBER]
com.newrelic INFO: Using default collector host: collector.newrelic.com
com.newrelic INFO: Using default collector host: collector.newrelic.com

If so, this is a normal part of the agent connect life cycle! :smiley:

What is a ForceRestartException?

Basically, the log message you’re seeing indicates that one of your agents received an instruction to restart when attempting to connect to our collector. Alone, this does not indicate a serious issue.

  • When an agent first connects to our collector, it exchanges configuration data and receives an agent run ID. These age out periodically, normally every 3 days, at which point you’ll see a ForceRestartException due to a stale configuration. It’s just telling the agent to restart, reestablish a connection, and verify its configuration settings.

  • A similar restart is triggered when we perform a change on our end that requires agents to negotiate a new connection, such as a collector deploy. Where this issue is concerning is if you see several in a row at roughly one minute intervals, indicating that the agent isn’t able to successfully reconnect.

Additionally, in New Relic Java Agent release 5.11.0, we released an update where the agent now logs ForceRestartExceptions at warning level rather than severe. So after reading this, it might be a good time to Update your Java Agent! :sunglasses:

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