Log files are normally generated by software in order to record events which can be essential in solving issues, monitoring, or tracing something. Log files are very helpful for software developers and system administrators especially if debugging tools aren’t available.
Before, I usually just use text editors, like Notepad++, when viewing log files. Text editors are made for editing plain text files but some may have limitations. I tried opening a huge file before and the editor crashed. One solution for huge log files is to split them to multiple smaller files which can be handled by text editors. What if you really want to view the file without manipulation? Is there a way?
Glogg to The Rescue
I searched for software that are especially made for viewing log files and came across glogg. You may view the license details of the software here as it is a free one. glogg has a very user-friendly GUI while supporting multiple platforms such as Windows, Linux, and MacOS. Being a cross-platform software is very helpful for me because I use Windows at work and usually use OS X at home.
I was able to view the huge log file and successfully use the powerful search mechanism of glogg. The software did not suffer from slow performance and I super love the filtered results. The search results are displayed in a separate window pane and I can copy them for further filtering.
Pro Tip: Use the powerful combination of glogg alongside Sublime for getting the unique lines from the search results.
Are you interested with the performance of glogg as compared to other software? I conducted some rough tests to check other alternatives as well. My main requirement is to be able to open a huge file quickly. Another requirement is to quickly search parts of the log file.
Getting a Huge Log File
In order to check its performance and for some rough comparisons, I need to have a huge log file. As I am too lazy to create a program for generating a log file, I tried searching for one and encountered Flog, a generator of fake logs. Below are the steps to get you started in generating the file.
Get the Flog library
go get github.com/mingrammer/flog
Run the Flog command below to generate a 1GB size log file.
flog.exe -b 1073741824 -t log -o huge-log.log
|Software||Type||Platform||Time to Open File||Keyword Search|
|Visual Studio Code||Editor||Cross-Platform||~6 secs||~1 sec (Partial Results Only)|
|Sublime Text||Editor||Cross-Platform||~40 secs||App Closes|
|glogg||Viewer||Cross-Platform||~4 secs||~10 secs|
|LogExpert||Viewer||Windows||~20 secs||~250 secs|
|BareTail||Viewer||Windows||~1 secs||Not Available for Free|
Note: Notepad and Notepad++ failed to open the 1 GB file generated by Flog.
- Intel Core i7 4790 3.60GHz
- 8GB DDR3 1600MHz
- Samsung 850 EVO SSD
- Windows 10 64-bit
- Stopwatch of phone
Disclaimer: Given the manual testing done, the results are not accurate. It is not good to compare software that are not really meant for viewing huge files that is why I also tried LogExpert and BareTail.
I am very happy and satisfied with glogg. I think I am using this tool since 2016 and it really helped me a lot, especially at work. It addresses my needs and exceeds my expectations. For me, glogg is already the best free cross-platform viewer.
Kudos to Mr. Nicolas Bonnefon, the creator of glogg. Cheers!