syslog-notify 0.1

Provides real-time pop-up notification of system log messages

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GPL (GNU General Public License) 
Jon Niehof
ROOT \ System \ Monitoring
2 syslog-notify Screenshots:
syslog-notify - syslog-notify running on Debian 6.0 while installing the OpenSSH serversyslog-notify - syslog-notify in Ubuntu 9.10
syslog-notify is an utilty for modern Linux (and other Unix-like) desktops, which provides a convenient pop-up display for messages that would otherwise be written unnoticed to the system logs.

The choice of messages to display (from all messages to only the most critical) is completely configurable through the standard syslog configuration files. Popups are handled via the notification standard, and thus is fully integrated with the desktop environment, e.g. Ubuntu's NotifyOSD or the standard Gnome notification-daemon that ships with many distributions.

In short: if you want to be informed about what your computer is doing, syslog-notify is for you.


Compiling syslog-notify requires a working C compiler and development libraries for libnotify. On a Debian or Ubuntu system, installing the libnotify-dev and gcc packages should be sufficient (e.g. sudo aptitude install libnotify-dev gcc.)

Unpack the tarball (tar -jxvf syslog-notify-0.1.tar.bz2), cd into the created directory, and ./configure. This will check for the necessary libraries. configure takes the usual options for a GNU autotools? configure script; see the file INSTALL in the source for details. If configure complains, please ask the mailing list for help.

make will compile the program.


make install will copy the binary syslog-notify to /usr/local/bin/. (You will likely have to be root, so use sudo make install). You can also run the binary where it was built, or copy it elsewhere manually.

syslog-notify needs a FIFO to receive the messages from syslog; create it with sudo mkfifo /var/spool/syslog-notify. Make it world-readable and writeable with sudo chmod ugo+rw /var/spool/syslog-notify


syslog-notify at a prompt will start the program. It will exit when the X session ends.

To run on startup, in GNOME use System, Preferences, Startup Applications. Click “Add”. Put syslog-notify in the name, syslog-notify in command, and click “Add.”

Last updated on February 15th, 2010

#pop-up notifications #notification system #log messages #log #messages #notifications #notify

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