Logs are dry and boring. They only provide excitement to those who know what they’re looking for, and where to find it.

The same is also true of software logs.

But when your system goes awry and you need to narrow down to find the cause, logs are where you turn.

That means having a good log viewer installed is something of an an essential — but which one should Ubuntu ship with?

GNOME Logs vs GNOME System Log

An Ubuntu developer proposes replacing the aged GNOME System Log app that Ubuntu currently ships with, with the newer, somewhat nicer GNOME Logs app.

The proposed switch sort of makes sense when you learn the last release of GNOME System Log was 4 flippin’ years ago, and that it cannot display systemd logs (which, given that Ubuntu now uses systemd by default, is a bit of an Achilles heel).

Not that ye olde log viewer is entirely meritless. GNOME Logs may be sleeker and better supported (last updated this month, fact fans) but it doesn’t (currently) show logs for things like dpkg or apt, and it forgets logs between boots (which, to be fair, are also a bit of an Achilles heel, too).

But with a few tweaks here and there, a flick of the switch on persistent journalling, and some bandaids for a few outstanding bugs, it seems like a sensible upgrade.

So, the next time your system plays up, you might be scouting for errors in GNOME Logs.

Image: GNOME Wiki