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Linux Kernel Development Speeds Up

Linux

The Linux Foundation has made some analyzation the past two years into just how much code is being added to the project and who is doing that contribution. This year’s report is out, and the results are actually quite smile-worthy if you’re a Linux advocate: the increase in code contributions is phenomenal, the rate at which these contributions are being submitted is faster, and there are more individual developers than previously.

Eight Years of Linux Kernel Vulnerable

Linux It’s the end of the world. Again. According to some Linux developers and security researchers, a bug in the Linux kernel has just been uncovered that makes just about every distribution utilizing kernel 2.4 and 2.6 on just about all architectures since May of 2001 vulnerable to a certain kind of attack.

Dell: Linux Netbook High Return Rate ‘Non-Issue’

Linux

I think we can finally put a certain myth to rest that’s been circling around the web for a while now. Microsoft often claimed that netbooks running Linux saw higher return rates than those running Windows, but according to Dell, this is utter nonsense.


Here are some command line tricks and tips you may find use useful.

1. Log Into a Linux Machine Without Knowing the Username or Password

If you come across a Linux machine that you need to gain access to but you don’t know the username or password, you can gain access by following these steps:

Restart the system and press ‘e’ or F2 to enter GRUB menu. Choose ‘ROOT’ in the options. In the command line that appears, type ‘tail /etc/passwd’ and locate the username in the text that appears. Now that you have that username, type ‘passwd USERNAME’ and enter a new password. Once finished, type EXIT, select OK to exit recovery mode, and then login with the username and new password.

2. Combining TXT files

If you have two text files with lines that are identified as below, you can join them with the following three commands. Be sure the lines match, however, and put them in the order you want the files combined.

$ cat animals.txt

100 Dogs

200 Cats

300 Lions

$ cat actions.txt

100 bark

200 meow

300 roar

$ join animals.txt actions.txt

100 Dogs bark

200 Cats meow

300 Lions roar

3. Check Out How Many Hours a Computer Has Been On

Find a system’s up-time with this piece of code. The numbers given will be listed as hours. So, for example, if it says 9.32, the system has been up for 9 hours and 32 minutes.

$ ac –d

4. View All Running Processes

Linux doesn’t have a task manager like you find in Windows. While you can download various types online, the best way to view the current running processes on your system is to open the terminal and run:

$ ps aux | more

5. Check On Total Disc Space Usage of A Directory+ Its Subs

If you’re low on disc space and you want to find out which of your directories are taking up the most space, then you can use the following command. Replace the home symbol ( ~ ) with whatever directory you want to check. For example, du -sh /etc.

# du -sh ~

6. View Active Network Connections with PID

Take a peek to see what connections are currently active on the network with this handy command.

# netstat -tap

7. Find All Files on a System Larger than X MB/GB

Say you just downloaded a 1GB+ ISO onto your system, you know it is around somewhere, but you just can’t figure out where it was saved. This little bit of code is a nifty solution for locating the file.

# find / -type f -size +1000M

8. Locate and Identify Recently Altered Files

Do you want a nice list of files that have recently been altered on any given system? If so, enter this tidbit into the terminal:

# find . –mtime -2

9. Find a Past Date

Say you need to find out rather quickly what the date was 49 days ago. To find out, type:

$ date –date=’49 days ago’

10. Find a Future Date

In the same vein as the previous example, say you need to find out what the date will be in 49. To find that out, type:

$ date –date=’3 seconds’

Note that it’s the same as the last bit, only without the word ‘ago’ added.

11. Locate Files with Specific Words in the Name

If you need to find a file on a system that has a specific name, such as ‘passwords’ or ‘taxes’, then you can search a directory with the following code:

# find ~ -name “*passwords*”

12. View Processes Run By Different Users

If you want to see what processes are running for different users that the one logged in, run this:

$ ps U oracle

13. View Items Inside Compressed (Archive) Folder

Have you ever downloaded an archive, only to discover junk inside it? The following command will reveal what is inside a zip folder before you open it.

# unzip -l var-name.zip

14: Eject Removable Media

Where it’s an iPod or an SD card, you can eject onboard media by simply typing:

EJECT

15: Save the Active Window as a JPEG

If you need to save the active window on your desktop as a JPEG but don’t want to download any special software or use PrntScrn and a photo editor, use this command:

import -window root MyTest.jpg

16: Bump User Off Network

Whether they’re doing something that is going to contaminate the network, they’re hogging resources, or you simply don’t like them, you can log a user off their computer with this handy piece of code:

skill -kill -u username

17. Block a Computer’s Access to Specific Websites

Say you’re running a business that uses Linux machines, you notice that your employees are spending a ridiculous amount of time checking the weather. You can block their ability to access those sites by opening /etc/hosts with your text editor (sudo gedit /etc/hosts) and adding:

127.0.0.1 website.com

18. Schedule Midnight Downloads

This code is incredibly handy; it allows you to schedule the time for a download to happen–say, at 3PM while you’re at work or midnight while you’re sleeping.

echo ‘wget website.com’ | at 012:00

19. Using the Terminal As Root

Using the Terminal as root is sort of like right-clicking on an application in Vista and choosing ‘run as Administrator’. It gives you the ability to do things you otherwise couldn’t do (namely, run dangerous code). To use the terminal as root, type:

sudo su

20. Disabling Password Prompt When Using Sudo

Whenever you use the ‘sudo’ command in Linux, you’re prompted to enter the user password before the command will go through. This gets annoying. The solution? Disable it. To do so, use the Terminal and type:

gedit sudo visudo

scroll down to the line that says: username ALL=(ALL) ALL

and change it to say: username ALL=(ALL) NOPASSWD: ALL

21. Change the Default Conky

If you’re using a distro that includes Conky by default, such as Crunchbang, you might wander how you can edit its settings. To do this, enter this in the Terminal:

sudo gedit ~/.conkyrc

Of course, replace ‘gedit’ with the text editor of your choice, and sudo is Ubuntu specific.

22. Put a LiveCD on a USB

Say there’s a machine you want to gain access to and copy files from, but you don’t have access to the computer’s login info. You can gain access with it using a LiveCD. The easiest way to do this is by using a USB thumb drive. You can do this by downloading a liveCD iso and then downloading UNETbootin.

Plug in your USB drive, run UNETbootin, and install the ISO with that.

23. Safely Restart Linux

Lets say you’re duped into running a fork bomb, or you download a file that promises to be one thing, only to turn out to be a massive tarbomb. How do you safely restart the frozen system? By doing the following:

Press ALT + PrntScrn and then, while holding those, type the following letters in order: REISUB.

24. View All Files (Including the Hidden Ones)

If you need to view all the files within whatever directory you’re in, including ones that are hidden, use the following bit of code:

ls -al

Ubuntu Netbook Remix 9.04  is Ubuntu fo netbooks.

CLICK TO ENLARGE

Ubuntu Netbook Remix is a ‘remix’ of the standard Ubuntu Desktop release to enable it to work better on devices with small screens, such as Netbooks (sub-notebooks).

Ubuntu Netbook Remix is optimised to run on a new category of affordable Internet-centric devices called netbooks. It includes a new consumer-friendly interface that allows users to quickly and easily get on-line and use their favourite applications. This interface is optimised for a retail sales environment.

Canonical has collaborated with Intel and is working with a number of OEM’s to deliver Ubuntu on netbooks in retail. In keeping with the philosophy of our best work being available to everyone, the core remix product is available to all through the Canonical repositories. This version is free to download and modify by any user.

What is a remix?

A remix is a ‘respun’ version of Ubuntu built for a specific purpose. Although Canonical has encouraged community projects to use this terminology for some time, this is the first time that Canonical has used it. We are using it to differentiate from an ‘Edition’ which we consider a complete version with daily builds suitable for the average user with no additional work beyond installing the CD. To use the Ubuntu Netbook Remix you need to install packages on top of an existing Ubuntu installation and you may have some compatibility issues depending on your hardware profile. For now we recommend it only for experienced Linux users or commercial OEMs and ODMs engage with Canonical for support and service offerings.

In addition to the Ubuntu Netbook Remix there will be pre-installed remixes made available on manufacturer’s machines. These will contain software that is not free and built for specific hardware profiles unique to the OEM. These will not be publicly available as we do not have the right to redistribute the software.

All of the initial Ubuntu Netbook remixes combine optimisations from the Moblin project for Intel® AtomTM processors and it is specially designed for netbooks. Intel and Canonical are working to create a new computing experience across a rapidly expanding category of portable devices.

Ubuntu Netbook Remix 9.04 (img)

[iso] [846 MB]

OK, so it has been a while since I posted and I do intend to make up for that. Having said that here are some very useful links to be getting on with.

Finally, A Newbie’s Getting Started Guide to Linux [PDF]

The Idiot’s Ultimate Guide to Build Your Own PC

The Unofficial Guide to the iPhone (ok so it is not exactly Linux but I found it very interesting)

Ubuntu pocket guide

Have fun

Error Messages Explained

5.1 ERROR: Permission denied
5.2 ERROR: Downloads won’t run!
5.3 ERROR: Flash movies don’t move

Featured tutorials

Beginner’s guides

Need to monitor Linux server performance? Try these built-in command and a few add-on tools. Most Linux distributions are equipped with tons of monitoring. These tools provide metrics which can be used to get information about system activities. You can use these tools to find the possible causes of a performance problem. The commands discussed below are some of the most basic commands when it comes to system analysis and debugging server issues such as:

  1. Finding out bottlenecks.
  2. Disk (storage) bottlenecks.
  3. CPU and memory bottlenecks.
  4. Network bottlenecks.


#1: top – Process Activity Command

The top program provides a dynamic real-time view of a running system i.e. actual process activity. By default, it displays the most CPU-intensive tasks running on the server and updates the list every five seconds.

Fig.01: Linux top commandFig.01: Linux top command

Commonly Used Hot Keys

The top command provides several useful hot keys:

Hot Key Usage
t Displays summary information off and on.
m Displays memory information off and on.
A Sorts the display by top consumers of various system resources. Useful for quick identification of performance-hungry tasks on a system.
f Enters an interactive configuration screen for top. Helpful for setting up top for a specific task.
o Enables you to interactively select the ordering within top.
r Issues renice command.
k Issues kill command.
z Turn on or off color/mono

=> Related: How do I Find Out Linux CPU Utilization?

#2: vmstat – System Activity, Hardware and System Information

The command vmstat reports information about processes, memory, paging, block IO, traps, and cpu activity.
# vmstat 3
Sample Outputs:

procs -----------memory---------- ---swap-- -----io---- --system-- -----cpu------
 r  b   swpd   free   buff  cache   si   so    bi    bo   in   cs us sy id wa st
 0  0      0 2540988 522188 5130400    0    0     2    32    4    2  4  1 96  0  0
 1  0      0 2540988 522188 5130400    0    0     0   720 1199  665  1  0 99  0  0
 0  0      0 2540956 522188 5130400    0    0     0     0 1151 1569  4  1 95  0  0
 0  0      0 2540956 522188 5130500    0    0     0     6 1117  439  1  0 99  0  0
 0  0      0 2540940 522188 5130512    0    0     0   536 1189  932  1  0 98  0  0
 0  0      0 2538444 522188 5130588    0    0     0     0 1187 1417  4  1 96  0  0
 0  0      0 2490060 522188 5130640    0    0     0    18 1253 1123  5  1 94  0  0

Display Memory Utilization Slabinfo

# vmstat -m

Get Information About Active / Inactive Memory Pages

# vmstat -a
=> Related: How do I find out Linux Resource utilization to detect system bottlenecks?

#3: w – Find Out Who Is Logged on And What They Are Doing

w command displays information about the users currently on the machine, and their processes.
# w username
# w vivek

Sample Outputs:

 17:58:47 up 5 days, 20:28,  2 users,  load average: 0.36, 0.26, 0.24
USER     TTY      FROM              LOGIN@   IDLE   JCPU   PCPU WHAT
root     pts/0    10.1.3.145       14:55    5.00s  0.04s  0.02s vim /etc/resolv.conf
root     pts/1    10.1.3.145       17:43    0.00s  0.03s  0.00s w

#4: uptime – Tell How Long The System Has Been Running

The uptime command can be used to see how long the server has been running. The current time, how long the system has been running, how many users are currently logged on, and the system load averages for the past 1, 5, and 15 minutes.
# uptime
Output:

 18:02:41 up 41 days, 23:42,  1 user,  load average: 0.00, 0.00, 0.00

1 can be considered as optimal load value. The load can change from system to system. For a single CPU system 1 – 3 and SMP systems 6-10 load value might be acceptable.

#5: ps – Displays The Processes

ps command will report a snapshot of the current processes. To select all processes use the -A or -e option:
# ps -A
Sample Outputs:

  PID TTY          TIME CMD
    1 ?        00:00:02 init
    2 ?        00:00:02 migration/0
    3 ?        00:00:01 ksoftirqd/0
    4 ?        00:00:00 watchdog/0
    5 ?        00:00:00 migration/1
    6 ?        00:00:15 ksoftirqd/1
....
.....
 4881 ?        00:53:28 java
 4885 tty1     00:00:00 mingetty
 4886 tty2     00:00:00 mingetty
 4887 tty3     00:00:00 mingetty
 4888 tty4     00:00:00 mingetty
 4891 tty5     00:00:00 mingetty
 4892 tty6     00:00:00 mingetty
 4893 ttyS1    00:00:00 agetty
12853 ?        00:00:00 cifsoplockd
12854 ?        00:00:00 cifsdnotifyd
14231 ?        00:10:34 lighttpd
14232 ?        00:00:00 php-cgi
54981 pts/0    00:00:00 vim
55465 ?        00:00:00 php-cgi
55546 ?        00:00:00 bind9-snmp-stat
55704 pts/1    00:00:00 ps

ps is just like top but provides more information.

Show Long Format Output

# ps -Al
To turn on extra full mode (it will show command line arguments passed to process):
# ps -AlF

To See Threads ( LWP and NLWP)

# ps -AlFH

To See Threads After Processes

# ps -AlLm

Print All Process On The Server

# ps ax
# ps axu

Print A Process Tree

# ps -ejH
# ps axjf
# pstree

Print Security Information

# ps -eo euser,ruser,suser,fuser,f,comm,label
# ps axZ
# ps -eM

See Every Process Running As User Vivek

# ps -U vivek -u vivek u

Set Output In a User-Defined Format

# ps -eo pid,tid,class,rtprio,ni,pri,psr,pcpu,stat,wchan:14,comm
# ps axo stat,euid,ruid,tty,tpgid,sess,pgrp,ppid,pid,pcpu,comm
# ps -eopid,tt,user,fname,tmout,f,wchan

Display Only The Process IDs of Lighttpd

# ps -C lighttpd -o pid=
OR
# pgrep lighttpd
OR
# pgrep -u vivek php-cgi

Display The Name of PID 55977

# ps -p 55977 -o comm=

Find Out The Top 10 Memory Consuming Process

# ps -auxf | sort -nr -k 4 | head -10

Find Out top 10 CPU Consuming Process

# ps -auxf | sort -nr -k 3 | head -10

#6: free – Memory Usage

The command free displays the total amount of free and used physical and swap memory in the system, as well as the buffers used by the kernel.
# free
Sample Output:

            total       used       free     shared    buffers     cached
Mem:      12302896    9739664    2563232          0     523124    5154740
-/+ buffers/cache:    4061800    8241096
Swap:      1052248          0    1052248

=> Related: :

  1. Linux Find Out Virtual Memory PAGESIZE
  2. Linux Limit CPU Usage Per Process
  3. How much RAM does my Ubuntu / Fedora Linux desktop PC have?

#7: iostat – Average CPU Load, Disk Activity

The command iostat report Central Processing Unit (CPU) statistics and input/output statistics for devices, partitions and network filesystems (NFS).
# iostat
Sample Outputs:

Linux 2.6.18-128.1.14.el5 (www03.nixcraft.in) 	06/26/2009

avg-cpu:  %user   %nice %system %iowait  %steal   %idle
           3.50    0.09    0.51    0.03    0.00   95.86

Device:            tps   Blk_read/s   Blk_wrtn/s   Blk_read   Blk_wrtn
sda              22.04        31.88       512.03   16193351  260102868
sda1              0.00         0.00         0.00       2166        180
sda2             22.04        31.87       512.03   16189010  260102688
sda3              0.00         0.00         0.00       1615          0

=> Related: : Linux Track NFS Directory / Disk I/O Stats

#8: sar – Collect and Report System Activity

The sar command is used to collect, report, and save system activity information. To see network counter, enter:
# sar -n DEV | more
To display the network counters from the 24th:
# sar -n DEV -f /var/log/sa/sa24 | more
You can also display real time usage using sar:
# sar 4 5
Sample Outputs:

Linux 2.6.18-128.1.14.el5 (www03.nixcraft.in) 		06/26/2009

06:45:12 PM       CPU     %user     %nice   %system   %iowait    %steal     %idle
06:45:16 PM       all      2.00      0.00      0.22      0.00      0.00     97.78
06:45:20 PM       all      2.07      0.00      0.38      0.03      0.00     97.52
06:45:24 PM       all      0.94      0.00      0.28      0.00      0.00     98.78
06:45:28 PM       all      1.56      0.00      0.22      0.00      0.00     98.22
06:45:32 PM       all      3.53      0.00      0.25      0.03      0.00     96.19
Average:          all      2.02      0.00      0.27      0.01      0.00     97.70

=> Related: : How to collect Linux system utilization data into a file

#9: mpstat – Multiprocessor Usage

The mpstat command displays activities for each available processor, processor 0 being the first one. mpstat -P ALL to display average CPU utilization per processor:
# mpstat -P ALL
Sample Output:

Linux 2.6.18-128.1.14.el5 (www03.nixcraft.in)	 	06/26/2009

06:48:11 PM  CPU   %user   %nice    %sys %iowait    %irq   %soft  %steal   %idle    intr/s
06:48:11 PM  all    3.50    0.09    0.34    0.03    0.01    0.17    0.00   95.86   1218.04
06:48:11 PM    0    3.44    0.08    0.31    0.02    0.00    0.12    0.00   96.04   1000.31
06:48:11 PM    1    3.10    0.08    0.32    0.09    0.02    0.11    0.00   96.28     34.93
06:48:11 PM    2    4.16    0.11    0.36    0.02    0.00    0.11    0.00   95.25      0.00
06:48:11 PM    3    3.77    0.11    0.38    0.03    0.01    0.24    0.00   95.46     44.80
06:48:11 PM    4    2.96    0.07    0.29    0.04    0.02    0.10    0.00   96.52     25.91
06:48:11 PM    5    3.26    0.08    0.28    0.03    0.01    0.10    0.00   96.23     14.98
06:48:11 PM    6    4.00    0.10    0.34    0.01    0.00    0.13    0.00   95.42      3.75
06:48:11 PM    7    3.30    0.11    0.39    0.03    0.01    0.46    0.00   95.69     76.89

=> Related: : Linux display each multiple SMP CPU processors utilization individually.

#10: pmap – Process Memory Usage

The command pmap report memory map of a process. Use this command to find out causes of memory bottlenecks.
# pmap -d PID
To display process memory information for pid # 47394, enter:
# pmap -d 47394
Sample Outputs:

47394:   /usr/bin/php-cgi
Address           Kbytes Mode  Offset           Device    Mapping
0000000000400000    2584 r-x-- 0000000000000000 008:00002 php-cgi
0000000000886000     140 rw--- 0000000000286000 008:00002 php-cgi
00000000008a9000      52 rw--- 00000000008a9000 000:00000   [ anon ]
0000000000aa8000      76 rw--- 00000000002a8000 008:00002 php-cgi
000000000f678000    1980 rw--- 000000000f678000 000:00000   [ anon ]
000000314a600000     112 r-x-- 0000000000000000 008:00002 ld-2.5.so
000000314a81b000       4 r---- 000000000001b000 008:00002 ld-2.5.so
000000314a81c000       4 rw--- 000000000001c000 008:00002 ld-2.5.so
000000314aa00000    1328 r-x-- 0000000000000000 008:00002 libc-2.5.so
000000314ab4c000    2048 ----- 000000000014c000 008:00002 libc-2.5.so
.....
......
..
00002af8d48fd000       4 rw--- 0000000000006000 008:00002 xsl.so
00002af8d490c000      40 r-x-- 0000000000000000 008:00002 libnss_files-2.5.so
00002af8d4916000    2044 ----- 000000000000a000 008:00002 libnss_files-2.5.so
00002af8d4b15000       4 r---- 0000000000009000 008:00002 libnss_files-2.5.so
00002af8d4b16000       4 rw--- 000000000000a000 008:00002 libnss_files-2.5.so
00002af8d4b17000  768000 rw-s- 0000000000000000 000:00009 zero (deleted)
00007fffc95fe000      84 rw--- 00007ffffffea000 000:00000   [ stack ]
ffffffffff600000    8192 ----- 0000000000000000 000:00000   [ anon ]
mapped: 933712K    writeable/private: 4304K    shared: 768000K

The last line very important:

  • mapped: 933712K total amount of memory mapped to files
  • writeable/private: 4304K the amount of private address space
  • shared: 768000K the amount of address space this process is sharing with others

=> Related: : Linux find the memory used by a program / process using pmap command

#11 and #12: netstat and ss – Network Statistics

The command netstat displays network connections, routing tables, interface statistics, masquerade connections, and multicast memberships. ss command is used to dump socket statistics. It allows showing information similar to netstat. See the following resources about ss and netstat commands:

#13: iptraf – Real-time Network Statistics

The iptraf command is interactive colorful IP LAN monitor. It is an ncurses-based IP LAN monitor that generates various network statistics including TCP info, UDP counts, ICMP and OSPF information, Ethernet load info, node stats, IP checksum errors, and others. It can provide the following info in easy to read format:

  • Network traffic statistics by TCP connection
  • IP traffic statistics by network interface
  • Network traffic statistics by protocol
  • Network traffic statistics by TCP/UDP port and by packet size
  • Network traffic statistics by Layer2 address
Fig.02: General interface statistics: IP traffic statistics by network interface Fig.02: General interface statistics: IP traffic statistics by network interface
Fig.03 Network traffic statistics by TCP connectionFig.03 Network traffic statistics by TCP connection

#14: tcpdump – Detailed Network Traffic Analysis

The tcpdump is simple command that dump traffic on a network. However, you need good understanding of TCP/IP protocol to utilize this tool. For.e.g to display traffic info about DNS, enter:
# tcpdump -i eth1 'udp port 53'
To display all IPv4 HTTP packets to and from port 80, i.e. print only packets that contain data, not, for example, SYN and FIN packets and ACK-only packets, enter:
# tcpdump 'tcp port 80 and (((ip[2:2] - ((ip[0]&0xf)<<2)) - ((tcp[12]&0xf0)>>2)) != 0)'
To display all FTP session to 202.54.1.5, enter:
# tcpdump -i eth1 'dst 202.54.1.5 and (port 21 or 20'
To display all HTTP session to 192.168.1.5:
# tcpdump -ni eth0 'dst 192.168.1.5 and tcp and port http'
Use wireshark to view detailed information about files, enter:
# tcpdump -n -i eth1 -s 0 -w output.txt src or dst port 80

#15: strace – System Calls

Trace system calls and signals. This is useful for debugging webserver and other server problems. See how to use to trace the process and see What it is doing.

#16: /Proc file system – Various Kernel Statistics

/proc file system provides detailed information about various hardware devices and other Linux kernel information. See Linux kernel /proc documentations for further details. Common /proc examples:
# cat /proc/cpuinfo
# cat /proc/meminfo
# cat /proc/zoneinfo
# cat /proc/mounts

17#: Nagios – Server And Network Monitoring

Nagios is a popular open source computer system and network monitoring application software. You can easily monitor all your hosts, network equipment and services. It can send alert when things go wrong and again when they get better. FAN is “Fully Automated Nagios”. FAN goals are to provide a Nagios installation including most tools provided by the Nagios Community. FAN provides a CDRom image in the standard ISO format, making it easy to easilly install a Nagios server. Added to this, a wide bunch of tools are including to the distribution, in order to improve the user experience around Nagios.

18#: Cacti – Web-based Monitoring Tool

Cacti is a complete network graphing solution designed to harness the power of RRDTool’s data storage and graphing functionality. Cacti provides a fast poller, advanced graph templating, multiple data acquisition methods, and user management features out of the box. All of this is wrapped in an intuitive, easy to use interface that makes sense for LAN-sized installations up to complex networks with hundreds of devices. It can provide data about network, CPU, memory, logged in users, Apache, DNS servers and much more. See how to install and configure Cacti network graphing tool under CentOS / RHEL.

#19: KDE System Guard – Real-time Systems Reporting and Graphing

KSysguard is a network enabled task and system monitor application for KDE desktop. This tool can be run over ssh session. It provides lots of features such as a client/server architecture that enables monitoring of local and remote hosts. The graphical front end uses so-called sensors to retrieve the information it displays. A sensor can return simple values or more complex information like tables. For each type of information, one or more displays are provided. Displays are organized in worksheets that can be saved and loaded independently from each other. So, KSysguard is not only a simple task manager but also a very powerful tool to control large server farms.

Fig.05 KDE System GuardFig.05 KDE System Guard {Image credit: Wikipedia}

See the KSysguard handbook for detailed usage.

#20: Gnome System Monitor – Real-time Systems Reporting and Graphing

The System Monitor application enables you to display basic system information and monitor system processes, usage of system resources, and file systems. You can also use System Monitor to modify the behavior of your system. Although not as powerful as the KDE System Guard, it provides the basic information which may be useful for new users:

  • Displays various basic information about the computer’s hardware and software.
  • Linux Kernel version
  • GNOME version
  • Hardware
  • Installed memory
  • Processors and speeds
  • System Status
  • Currently available disk space
  • Processes
  • Memory and swap space
  • Network usage
  • File Systems
  • Lists all mounted filesystems along with basic information about each.
Fig.06 The Gnome System Monitor applicationFig.06 The Gnome System Monitor application

Bounce: Additional Tools

A few more tools:

  • nmap – scan your server for open ports.
  • lsof – list open files, network connections and much more.
  • ntop web based tool – ntop is the best tool to see network usage in a way similar to what top command does for processes i.e. it is network traffic monitoring software. You can see network status, protocol wise distribution of traffic for UDP, TCP, DNS, HTTP and other protocols.
  • Conky – Another good monitoring tool for the X Window System. It is highly configurable and is able to monitor many system variables including the status of the CPU, memory, swap space, disk storage, temperatures, processes, network interfaces, battery power, system messages, e-mail inboxes etc.
  • GKrellM – It can be used to monitor the status of CPUs, main memory, hard disks, network interfaces, local and remote mailboxes, and many other things.
  • vnstat – vnStat is a console-based network traffic monitor. It keeps a log of hourly, daily and monthly network traffic for the selected interface(s).
  • htop – htop is an enhanced version of top, the interactive process viewer, which can display the list of processes in a tree form.
  • mtr – mtr combines the functionality of the traceroute and ping programs in a single network diagnostic tool.

This post was originally from http://www.cyberciti.biz/tips/top-linux-monitoring-tools.html

Even as a child, I knew that Pixie Sticks were just trouble. The paper tubes loaded with colorful yet mysteriously flavorless sugar weren’t particularly tasty, and too many of them led to mom and dad either threatening to pull the car over or hinting ominously about what would happen if they “had to tell me again.” Parents today know that in addition to the traditional side effects, Pixie Sticks aren’t terribly good for USB ports, either.

That’s not the case with the other sort of Sugar. Sugar, the kid-friendly open source desktop that was featured first on the OLPC XO laptop is now available (in a beta release) as a liveUSB image. The Sugar on a Stick environment is powered by Fedora 11 and features familiar Sugar desktop applications and functions, as well as new educational and collaborative tools, such as the InfoSlicer online content editor, remixer, and delivery application.

Sugar on a Stick, like other live media distributions, runs without altering any software or data on the computer’s existing hard drive. The Sugar on a Stick project plans on offering several configurations for the live image — so that a child’s work can be saved on the flash drive whether it is run natively or through a virtualization or emulation mode. The liveUSB image requires a flash drive of at least 1 GB in size (formatted as a FAT32 or FAT16 partition). Sugar on a Stick can peacefully coexist with existing data on flash drives meeting the size and formatting criteria. The Sugar Labs Wiki explains how to create the image on Windows, Linux, or Mac platforms, as well as instructions on getting it up and running in a virtual environment.

Netbooks and inexpensive, kid-friendly hardware are great ideas, but in many cases, they simply aren’t possible (or necessarily desirable). Packaging Sugar in this format offers the educators — and children — using it many of the same benefits at a much lower price point. While you might not wish to use your child’s school work as part of the beta testing, the Sugar on a Stick team invites educators, parents, and even their interested progeny to try the software on as many devices as possible and report back with bugs and feedback. The Sugar on a Stick team hopes to offer students a polished 1.0 release by the third quarter of 2009 — just in time to head back to class.

Original post by Kristin Shoemaker

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