GLOV (GUI'less LOg Viewer) is an open source console based log and text file viewing utility that runs on macOS, Linux and Windows. Feel free to fork a version and send me pull requests.

Note Currently under development. Most of the main features are in place, which allows it to be used now. Some features are not implemented yet, and are marked as such. Windows version, redraw is slow, and follow mode doesn't follow the file. The reason is because the way I'm reading from the keyboard, Windows blocks when I read a character.

If you routinely find yourself using less and tail on log files while you are shh'ed to a remote machine, then glov is a utility that will interest you.

Designed out of the need to have a command line log file viewer that would give me ability to view a file, search it, show line numbers, set bookmarks, and monitor it in real time. Something like less is great, but if I want to monitor the file, I always found myself using line numbers when I needed to see if the file changed, which is problematic if I don't remember the line number. Using tail -f is great for monitoring a file, and if you hit enter a few times, it effectively marks the location so you can continue to monitor the file, and know where you marked it. But neither are ideal. Something that will let me bounce around the file, bookmark locations, and monitor is what is really needed.

Although the idea of using something like splunk is great in theory, in practice a lot of enterprises don't use it for all their apps, which leaves the developers needing to use some combination of ssh+less+tail. Hence the desire for something that combines the best of both tools, but add some additional features.


There is a strong emphasis on navigating, searching, and being able to jump around the file with as few keystrokes as possible.

View and monitor text files. Monitor them in realtime using follow mode. Follow mode watches the file for changes, and shows you any new text that was added to the file. You can navigate around the the file using arrows, page up/down, and can jump to the start or end of a file. While you are following a file, any new lines that come in and match your search will be highlighted.

Search through your file using normal text find, or regular expressions like '\d[A-Z]+' or '^2018-12-25 \d\d:\d\d:\d\d :.*'. All your matches will be highlighted, and you can navigate through them both forwards and backwards.

Bookmarks let you mark spot in your file, then come back to it with a single keystroke. This is especially useful when you are following the file, and you need to mark the current location so you know when new text was added to the file. Set a bookmark after you go into follow mode, then when that big block of text comes in, you can easily see where you had started watching.

Line numbers can be toggled on and off with a single keystroke.

Ignore case in searches, including regular expression searches. Or you can match case. Again with a single keystroke.

Remember your position in a file, bookmarks you set, and search queries, even after you close glov. Not yet implemented.

Filter mode will only show the files that match your search criteria. All other lines are not shown. If you were monitoring a busy file, you might want to only see lines with the word ERROR in it. By filtering, you eliminate all other noise. Not yet implemented.

Highlight is used to draw attention to text in the file. You define a regex, and GLOV will highlight any text that matches the regex. You are not able to navigate to highlighted text. Not yet implemented.