Command Line Tools For Monitoring Linux & Linux System Preformence .


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In Linux, even with the advances of the GUI and having full feature rich user friendly desktop environments, it is still nessesary to interact with the CLI (Command Line Interface) for system administration and monitoring how things are functioning.

I'll explain some commands what are used daily by most people who are heavy interested in Linux or system administrators .

top - This command is used to display all running process on a system and is updated regularly. From CPU usage to memory usage to PID of a service this command is invaluable for say the job of killing a process . for example kill (pid inserted her) .

vmstat - vmstat will monitor the likes of your memory, kernel threads and disks plus much more . vmstat is not natively installed by default so simply installing the package sysstat by using the terminal and typing sudo apt-get install sysstat .

lsof - This will list open files and display their process .

tcpdump - this will capture the tcp traffic on a given network interface and can be saved for further analysis later on . tcp dump is available in all major Linux distributions . tcpdump is a network packet analyzer or sniffer .

netstat - This program is invaluable to network administrators as this will monitor network packets coming in and out of a system .

iotop - iotop will list disk usage in real time and list their processes .

iostat - This is a simple tool that will list input and output storage device statistics .

iftop - This is a tool that will display network bandwidth utilization from source and destination hosts .

suricata - This is a network and system intrusion and detection suite used to monitor all incoming and outgoing traffic and has the ability to monitor individual packets on a system or network .

When you use individual commands say those listed here and then mix multiple commands with various arguments within the terminal or as some people like to call it the CLI Linux is very powerful. A big part and the one of the main reasons for this Linux is based on lines of executable code unlike windows.

If you wish to run multiple commands use the semicolon ; and weather or not a commands executes properly the next command will be invoked

I'll give you an example .

Say for example you are currently residing in your downloads folder. You could type .

pwd ; ls ; whoami ; ping ; wget <url> <filename> .

Using the wget command to download a file in linux, if you wish to do a silent download the select the -q option for quiet . I'll give you an example . <wget> -q <url> <filename>

If you wish to display as much information about whats going on with your system you can use a program called glances. As far as I know this is not natively installed by default so typing sudo apt-get install glances. This will take your terminal window and display as much information as possible with in the space available .

The information I have provided in this article is not and by no means comprehensive but an overview of what you can do. Say for example on your local system if you wish to manipulate your system but at the same time run administrative tasks that were the semicolon comes in to effect by running multiple commands.

Thanks for reading and I hoped that helped a bit .

:) ..