#log-file #monitor #utility #cli #system

app logtail

Displays and updates a dashboard based on one or more logfiles

16 releases (2 stable)

1.0.1 Feb 3, 2022
1.0.0 Nov 26, 2020
0.2.8 Nov 9, 2020
0.2.7 Sep 25, 2020
0.1.4 Aug 19, 2020

#1972 in Command line utilities

Download history 13/week @ 2024-02-22 1/week @ 2024-02-29 59/week @ 2024-03-28 26/week @ 2024-04-04

85 downloads per month

GPL-3.0 license

977 lines

Terminal Dashboard for Monitoring Log Files

logtail displays one or more log files in the terminal in the manner of tail -f.

Features of logtail:

  • it displays more than one logfile, one above the other or side-by-side
  • the display updates as each logfile grows
  • use tab or arrow keys to navigate and scroll
  • you can fork logtail-dash to create customised views of your logfile data

logtail is written in Rust and uses tui-rs to create the terminal UI, and linemux to monitor the logfiles.

Operating Systems

  • Linux: works on Ubuntu.
  • Windows: works on Windows 10.
  • MacOS: let me know what happens!

Install from crates.io

1 Install Rust via https://doc.rust-lang.org/cargo/getting-started/installation.html

2 Linux (Ubuntu)

sudo apt-get install build-essential

3a. Linux/MacOS install logtail:

cargo install logtail
logtail --help

3b. Windows install logtail-crossterm:

To build on Windows you must use the 'nightly' compiler until the 'itarget' feature becomes part of 'stable', so install Rust nightly using rustup:

rustup toolchain install nightly

To build logtail-crossterm on Windows, clone logtail-dash, build with +nightly and use the binary it creates under ./taget/release:

git clone https://github.com/happybeing/logtail-dash
cd logtail-dash
cargo +nightly build -Z features=itarget --bin logtail-crossterm --release --no-default-features

./target/release/logtail-crossterm --help

Note: vdash is a fork of logtail that provides a dashboard for SAFE Network Vaults (see vdash).


In the terminal type the command and the paths of one or more logfiles you want to monitor. For example:

logtail /var/log/auth.log /var/log/kern.log

When the dashboard is active, pressing 'v' or 'h' switches between horizontal and vertical arrangments (when viewing more than one logfile).

For more information:

logtail --help

Customised Logfile Dashboards

If you want to use the core functionality of logtail-dash to create a customised terminal display based on real time updates to files, you can do this by creating a fork and customising the files in src/custom:

src/custom/opt.rs: command line options and usage

src/custom/app.rs: application logic (e.g. parsing logfiles to `dashboard state)

src/custom/ui.rs : dashboard display and keyboard/mouse interface

Example: vdash is a fork of logtail that provides a dashboard for SAFE Network Vaults (see vdash).


Get pre-requisites

  1. Get Rust: see: https://doc.rust-lang.org/cargo/getting-started/installation.html

Get code

git clone https://github.com/happybeing/logtail-dash
cd logtail-dash


Linux / MacOS

Builds logtail which uses the termion backend (see tui-rs). Note: MacOS is untested

cargo build --bin logtail --features="termion" --release

Windows 10

Builds logtail-crossterm which uses the crossterm backend (see tui-rs), with the intention to support Windows.

NOT working on Windows yet, this is being worked on at the moment. Help with testing appreciated.

cargo build --bin logtail-crossterm --features="crossterm" --release

Quick Test

Here's a couple of useful commands to build and run logtail to monitor a couple of Linux logfiles.

Open two terminals and in one run logtail-dash with:

cargo run --bin logtail --features="termion"  /var/log/auth.log /var/log/kern.log

In a second terminal you can affect the first logfile by trying and failing to 'su root':

su root </dev/null

You can use any logfiles for this basic level of testing. Here are some to try:



Everything is GPL3.0 unless otherwise stated. Any contributions are accepted on the condition they conform to this license.

See also ./LICENSE


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