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Top 15 log interview questions

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No more boot logging since 16.04?

I noticed that my /var/log/boot.log file has date 2016-04-22, last time I booted in 15.10. Where are Xenial boot.log files located?


Source: (StackOverflow)

Where is Xserver log file located?

My Ubuntu 10.10 sometimes totally freezes. I suppose that it is somehow related to my graphic card and would like to check Xserver log. Where is this file located ?


Source: (StackOverflow)

Way to measure computer usage via screensaver active/not active time?

I'm looking for a simple way to determine the rough amount of time per day I spend on a computer. This can be a difficult task if you try to monitor processes, key presses, mouse clicks and the like, because one can be doing anything from thinking about a coding problem, reading a web article, talking on the phone, or gone off walking the dog. The computer cannot read my mind. Since I leave computers on 24/7 monitoring log-ins won't work.

I hit on the idea of logging how much time the computer spends in screensaver mode. My error would then be no greater than the product of the idle-time-to-screensaver with the number of times it goes into screensaver mode. Subtracting this from 24 hours would give me an estimate which would be reasonable for my purposes.

The problem is: I don't know how to log when the screensaver turns on and off. I am running Ubuntu 10.10 at the moment on most machines, about to start upgrading to 11.04 on some of them.

Any ideas?

[edit] After more googling I hit upon the dbus-monitor which looked like it might work, but is missing an important ingredient. Here's the script I am running which launches the monitor as a daemon:

#!/bin/bash
RUNNING=`ps -A | grep "dbus-monitor"`
if [ ! $RUNNING  ]; then
    echo "(Re)starting dbus-monitor daemon"
    nohup dbus-monitor "--profile" "type='signal',interface='org.gnome.ScreenSaver'" >> ${HOME}/sc.log &
fi

Here is the output it produces after locking and unlocking the screen a couple times:

sig     1304860712      153829  2       /org/freedesktop/DBus   org.freedesktop.DBus    NameAcquired
sig     1304860717      318732  462     /org/gnome/ScreenSaver  org.gnome.ScreenSaver   ActiveChanged
sig     1304860725      547928  463     /org/gnome/ScreenSaver  org.gnome.ScreenSaver   ActiveChanged
sig     1304861018      17      464     /org/gnome/ScreenSaver  org.gnome.ScreenSaver   ActiveChanged
sig     1304862919      403523  466     /org/gnome/ScreenSaver  org.gnome.ScreenSaver   ActiveChanged

The second column is obviously unix UTC in seconds. The missing ingredient is it doesn't identify whether the screensaver is on or off! I suppose I could assume they toggle from the time NameAcquired happens, but it makes me queasy that there might be a missing or extra event I can't anticipate which would throw everything out of sync.

Much obliged for ideas.

jkcunningham


Source: (StackOverflow)

How can I read NotifyOSD messages after they are displayed?

I'd like to read a list of messages displayed by notify-osd from time to time. I'm using 12.04 still, if it matters. Is this possible?

These two questions from 2010 indicate that a log file should exist at ~/.cache/notify-osd.log. I have no such file, and I'd like to know if this is a bug (in which case this question should be closed) or if this log file depends on another setting (like System Settings -> Privacy)?

I don't care about storing data between reboots. I just want to browse messages from the current session.

EDIT: Two good answers now but I'd like to know if these messages are stored anywhere, (total guess, /tmp? RAM?) for a short period after appearing on the screen. Some sort of buffer must exist as they appear one after another, a few seconds each, even if there are 20-30 notifications over the span of a minute or two.

I failed to mention in my original question that I'm not interested in yet another PPA + indicator or excessive drive writes, I just want to know if it is possible to see the messages for a short time after they appear.

My use case for this is to go back and find what song was played a few minutes ago on a streaming radio station. I have it on as background music, and occasionally a tune sticks in my head after I hear it. I have no way of going back to see what played 1-2 songs ago.


Source: (StackOverflow)

GUI for watching logs (tail and grep)

Could you recommend a GUI application with powerful log watching capabilities?

Generally it would work as tail -f in GUI, but on top of that following features would be very useful:

  • filtering out some lines based on (regular) expressions
  • coloring some lines based on (regular) expressions
  • interactive search
  • saveable configuration easily applicable to different files
  • notifications based on (regular) expressions

A similar tool on Windows is BareTail and its paid version - BareTailPro


Source: (StackOverflow)

Where are kernel panic logs?

I've got problem with Handbrake/ffmpeg. After ~5 minutes transcoding, the computer locks up. I'm fairly sure it's a kernel panic because caps-lock starts flashing.

There are a few logical questions about what to do and some about specific bugs but I'm really after one thing: what happened right before everything died?!

I've checked /var/log/kern.log and all I see around the time is me sticking in a DVD and then a few minutes later, the system booting up. No errors, no panic notice.

Is there any way to force panics to be logged? I'm fairly sure I can reproduce this (it's happened 100% of the times I've tried recently) so while I'd rather this "just worked", I'm happy enough to reboot a few times if it means I can find the cause of the panic.


Source: (StackOverflow)

How do I log all input and output in a terminal session?

How do I keep logs of all the work done via terminal? For example, I want a record of all the work done on database via terminal.


Source: (StackOverflow)

Where is the cron / crontab log?

I want to verify if my cron job is executing and what time. I believe there is a log for my sudo crontab -e jobs, but where?

I searched google and it I found references to look in /var/log (which I do not see anything with 'cron') and to edit the file /etc/syslog.conf which I also do not have. ?


Source: (StackOverflow)

Where are the NetworkManager logs?

A previous poster on the regular forums ( http://ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=843991 ) said /var/log/daemon.log, but I don't seem to have such a file. Do I need to enable logging?


Source: (StackOverflow)

How do I check if last shutdown was clean?

How can tell that my last shutdown was properly done in Ubuntu 11.10 or if the machine was powered off before shutting down the OS?


Source: (StackOverflow)

Does Ubuntu log when USB devices are connected?

When I connect a USB drive to an Ubuntu OS, would there be a text file which contains details of that connection and if so, where is that file located ? What is the name of that file?


Source: (StackOverflow)

Where are the OpenVPN connection logs and configuration files?

I have problem connecting to OpenVPN server. Where are OpenVPN log files and how do I find the connection details?


Source: (StackOverflow)

Where are all the major log files located?

So, if there is some problem with my computer, be it hardware or software, what are the major log files and where are they located?

Also, is there a generic location where log files of the other packages might be located?


Source: (StackOverflow)

Where is /var/log/messages?

Just installed natty, and cannot find /var/log/messages. Also, /var/log/daemon.log is missing. What happened? Why are they no longer present? And where I can find the same log information?


Source: (StackOverflow)

Where is log file from rc.local?

I have some commands to in my rc.local. I know that they are failing. How can I get log file with messages produced by executing rc.local? Where is it located?

I have checked the /var/log/boot.log. I know my messages are not there because I know already what is the reason of failure. But I still want to make sure from log file.

Note, I don't want to run script again, I could but I don't want. I would rather analyse wht happened during startup.

Thanks for any help.

Ubuntu 12.04 Desktop (if it matters)


Source: (StackOverflow)