I'm engaged in a handful web-development projects running on a LAMP stack. My present tool-set for inspecting and bugfixing is:

  • the softwares built-in log-viewer and the like, and
  • running "sudo tail -f /var/log/apache2/error.log" from the command-line, and
  • "sudo tail -f /var/log/apache2/access.log"

That's pretty much what I've done on the server-side. I'm new to inspecting the server-side, so I'm quite happy with this minimal setup. Setting up scripts to automate things a bit is definitely a next action for me.

My question is: What tools (CLI/GUI) or command-line commands do you use to keep track, inspect and manage your log-files on your LAMP stack?

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You can use MultiTail as a way to inspect one or more log files, and use its highlighting/filtering with regular expressions features to make sure that what you are looking for will always pop up.

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  • Thanks. This answer appealed to me, since it was an easy next step. – Aputsiak May 8 '09 at 20:32

Logcheck is a good way of monitoring production systems. You configure it to ignore the "normal" log messages, and it emails you everything else every hour.

However, because it doesn't alert you to messages as they appear, it may not be so useful in a development situation where you are in a code-run-debug loop.

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  • +1 I've installed and looked into it logcheck. While searching for docs, I came across "logwatch" and "swatch" which are mentioned in relation to "logcheck". Now I know where to expand the toolbox, thanks! – Aputsiak May 8 '09 at 20:45

Splunk is amazing for monitoring production environments.

I've never really attempted to use it for development however - seems a bit unwieldy.


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  • Splunk was a good answer, so you go up +1. Found that Splunk is available gratis, but not for free, on Win/OSX/Solaris/Linux/BSD/AIX. I didn't mention that I only will be using free software. :) – Aputsiak May 8 '09 at 20:55

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