current and stable version: 1.6.2
Getting Help with Xlogmaster
Further Information & Links:
- Is Xlogmaster still being developed?
- What is Xlogmaster ?
- What's new in the current release ?
- Supported Platforms
This project has been reopened for maintenance and further development.
Feel free to forward suggestions and other enhancements to the list.
Thank you to the original efforts of Georg C. F. Greve
(currently doing work for the FSF in Europe.)
If you are in a hurry, here is the ultra-short version:
Xlogmaster is a program that lets you monitor everything that's going on
on your system in a very quick and comfortable way. It allows reading logfiles,
devices or running status-gathering programs, translating all data (if wished)
and displaying it with filters for highlithing / lowlighting / hiding lines or taking
actions upon user-defined events.
For those who'd like to know more, here is an introduction into the features:
Based on the standard UN*X commands that perform similar tasks the modes are called:
Xlogmaster will read the file and then check back in
regular intervals (default: 0.3 seconds) whether anything has changed -
practically the same functionality you got with "tail -f" but just much
nicer to handle and look at. If you monitor more than two logfiles it makes
things much easier already.
This mode keeps on "catting" the file/device you have
given it in user defined intervals. The first thing that will probably come
to your mind now is: "Cool ! I can keep track of all the /proc devices that
are of interest for me." (didn't it ? :-) ) Whatever - I really like this mode.
The run mode allows starting a program and retrieving it's stdout. This allows you
to write a shellscript/program to gather any data that's important for you and
monitor the output in Xlogmaster - with all the features Xlogmaster has.
The retrieved information may then be piped through a plugin - the plugins
take the data on stdin and output it to stdout which is being read by Xlogmaster
again. This enables you to translate cryptic logfiles or extracting information in
a special way.
After reading the data from the TAIL/CAT/RUN modes (and piping it through the plugin
if wished) it can then be processed in certain ways. The
obvious one is displaying it in the text window. To make this more comfortable you can
define filters that allow you to raise, lower or hide lines on a extended REGEX
Since version 1.3.0 Xlogmaster supports background monitoring, as well -
you can define
filters that trigger certain actions based on a case-insensitive substring match.
The entry does not need to be active for that.
George invented a classification for the filters to help show how
they work on different levels. The Class0 filters
are filters that are applied at display-time and the
Class1 filters are used in the background.
Implemented filters are:
All matches are extended REGEX matches. See GNU REGEX manual for reference.
CLASS0: only one of the Class0 filters can be applied on a line. Usually the first applicable match is
being taken. The only exception is "Hide" - if it can be applied the line will be hidden even if it also matches
another Class0 filter.
Raise: a line is being highlighted on a match
Lower: a line is being lowlighted on a match
Hide: a line is being hidden on a match
CLASS1: all of the Class1 filters than can be applied are being applied so theoretically a single
line can trigger all filters and maybe even several times. All Class1 filters also trigger a user chosen
sound when being triggered so the user also gets an audio-warning.
Alert: the button for the logfile flashes up in a user-defined color (default is red) and slowly
fades back to it's normal color within a given time span. The idea is that
occurrences that are only of interest
for a certain timespan don't trigger the buttons to be all red if you leave the keyboard for a few hours.
Notice: a notice box will pop up at the current mouse position showing you the name of the
entry and the line that triggered the alarm together with the date the notice has been triggered. The notice box
contains a list so nothing will get lost. The box will be cleared and disappear if you click on the "dismiss" button
- but only then, so events that were very important will always be brought to your notice even if you have
been afk for days.
Uniconify: Xlogmaster will uniconify automatically if this event
is being triggered. Useful for people with limited desktop space who prefer to
keep Xlogmaster iconified.
Execute: a user-given program is being executed on a match. Some useful default scripts are
contained in the distribution but you can easily write your own ones, as well. For this purpose Xlogmaster
supplies some variables (name of entry, helptext for entry, line that triggered execution, absolute path to file/device, mode of entry (TAIL/CAT)).
Since there are a lot of changes usually only the most important ones are being
Stable tree 1.6.x:
First of all: You will definitely need the
GTK+ toolkit version 1.2.x if you didn't install
Apart from that there is no reason why it shouldn't work on all UN*X systems. Until
now I did not receive any mail telling me that Xlogmaster did not install fine.
- New mode: RUN
- Plugin support
- GTK+ 1.2.x compliant
- Complete "Customize" menu rewrite
- Execution now allows pipes
- Keyboard accelerators
- support for a system wide entry database
- support for personal entry database
- Xlogmaster now catches logfile rotation
The following list shows all systems we have positive knowledge about from users
who got Xlogmaster running without major problems. If your system
is not on the list and you are successful with the installation I'd like you
to send a short mail to
so I can include your system in this list.
Some systems people
have already configured the Xlogmaster package to fit
their system/distribution best. If you are running one of those systems you might
consider installing the ported version instead of the original one because it will probably
be even easier to install and will cause Xlogmaster to be installed "the standard way"
for your system without you having to worry about it. Ports exist for the following systems:powerpc
If you happen to maintain a port for a system not on this list you can send me a mail with
the HTML address (text preferred but I can include FTP addresses in case there is nothing
else available) to
and I will include it here.
- ... ?
You can download Xlogmaster from the gnu.org FTP site at http://ftp.gnu.org/pub/gnu/ or one of it's mirrors.
Additionally you should be able to find it on ftp://sunsite.unc.edu/pub/gnu/ or one of it's mirrors.
For "still hot and steaming" development versions fresh out of the running development you might want to
check out the development page.
If you would like to know whether someone already configured the package to fit your
system best you should take a look at the Existing Ports list.
Also see the software
page for information on obtaining Xlogmaster and other GNU software.
If you have a question about Xlogmaster in general, about help for including it in
some project or distribution you can send a mail to email@example.com.
If the question has been answered in the tutorial, the manpage or on this
page, though, the answer
will most probably contain several R's, T's, F's and M's.
Information on getting help with GNU software in general is available
at the Get Help with GNU Software page.
There are a few documents about Xlogmaster:
The Tutorial and the FAQ are still far from being complete... I would rather see them as a
start. Comments and suggestions are always welcome.
There are two mailing lists for Xlogmaster you can subscribe to:
All bug reports go to
- the bug report should contain:
- firstname.lastname@example.org: This list is for general discussion about Xlogmaster
- everything that doesn't fit into the second list belongs in here.
Subscribe via mail to
and just enter "subscribe" (without the quotes) in the body of the message
All postings go to email@example.com
- firstname.lastname@example.org: This list is for the running development of Xlogmaster. If you are interested in the latest features, in getting mail about the brandnew
betatest versions or just in helping making Xlogmaster more stable, this list is for you.
I actually encourage you to subscribe to this list because more betatesters make the next
full release more stable. If this sounds interesting you might also want to check out the
Subscribe via mail to
and just enter "subscribe" (without the quotes) in the body of the message
All postings go to email@example.com
Here is some more information in case you still haven't had enough:
- The version of Xlogmaster
- The version of GTK+
- Information about your system:
- Operating system and version
- Version of X
- Anything else you think might be relevant.
- How to reproduce the bug
- If the bug crashed Xlogmaster or what message you got
- Further information you can supply
Since it would be rude and not in the GNU policy to crowd this page with screenshots,
you can go the separate screenshot
page where you will get several thumbnails you can click on to get the full picture.
Have a look at the current developments on the
development page. You will also find links
to download the latest beta-versions there.
Return to GNU's home page.
Please send FSF & GNU inquiries & questions to
There are also other ways to
contact the FSF.
Please send comments on these web pages to
send other questions to
Copyright (C) 1998,1999 Georg C. F. Greve, 2004, 2012 John S. Gaythorpe -
Xlogmaster is a GNU program
Free Software Foundation, Inc.,
59 Temple Place - Suite 330, Boston, MA 02111, USA
Verbatim copying and distribution of this entire article is
permitted in any medium, provided this notice is preserved.
Last modified: Mar 11, 2012