Sign up ×
Super User is a question and answer site for computer enthusiasts and power users. It's 100% free, no registration required.

I'm a developer, and I generate big log files. I've tried several log viewer applications (free or not), so far mtail I like the most. But, it lacks features.

I would like from my log viewer to:

  • handle files > than 10MB
  • filtering
  • highlight search queries
  • behave like a log viewer - do all of these in real time, and fast

The question is:

Which log viewer would you recommend on Windows?

share|improve this question

closed as not constructive by slhck Oct 2 '12 at 21:06

As it currently stands, this question is not a good fit for our Q&A format. We expect answers to be supported by facts, references, or expertise, but this question will likely solicit debate, arguments, polling, or extended discussion. If you feel that this question can be improved and possibly reopened, visit the help center for guidance.If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

try ReflectInsight. I handles everything the requester asked. DISCLAIMER: I'm one of the developers for ReflectInsight. –  code5 Nov 4 '13 at 19:27
I saw we ban slhck for closing this thread, this thread is EXTREMELY constructive. –  John Aug 23 at 11:15

7 Answers 7

up vote 30 down vote accepted

BareTail, which has a free version, works pretty well for us for years.


share|improve this answer
I've seen this tool used in many places. –  Mercer Traieste Jul 19 '09 at 16:32
BareTail is awesome. We use this all the time –  pavsaund Aug 8 '09 at 7:21
Found this answer by a search. Very cool product to recommend. –  T. Stone Dec 8 '09 at 21:02
I also use this too, but running it on server 2008 R2 causes somekind of memory-leak with wmiprvse.exe –  maxlego Mar 27 '12 at 11:19
Positive: it opens logs VERY fast. Negative: the taskbar context menu is obnoxious. –  John Aug 23 at 11:16

My new favorite log viewer is glogg. It makes finding stuff in noisy log files very easy. It could use a few more features but does 95% of everything I need it to do, it is open source, written in C++ using Qt and runs on Linux/Windows/Mac. Give it a try.

Glogg screenshot on Windows

From the glogg description page:

glogg enables you to use regular expressions to search for interesting events in your log files. It presents a results window which, together with complex regular expressions allows easy isolation of the meaningful lines amongst the noise.

glogg has been primarily developed to help spot and understand problems in huge logs generated by embedded systems. It can be equally useful to a sysadmin digging through logs from databases or web servers.

The main design goals for glogg are:

  • it should be fast
  • it does not have any limit on the size of files it can handle
  • it provides a clear view of the matches even in heavily cluttered files.

If you think it does not do that, it is a bug and it should be fixed!

share|improve this answer
No UNICODE / UTF8 support –  Yurik Dec 6 '12 at 11:00
I can live without Unicode/UTF-8 support in a log viewer but Glogg does not (at as August 23rd, 2015) auto-reload automatically (you have to manually press F5) though it's find option is EXCELLENT. Almost ideal for viewing Apache access and MySQL query logs...almost and no dumb taskbar context menu like BareTail. –  John Aug 23 at 10:54

Log Expert


  • highlighting (regex, etc.)
  • filtering (regex, etc.)
  • custom columnizer (columnizer parses lines into columns)
  • multi-file support
  • + some common features

Log Expert screenshot

share|improve this answer
It crashes all the time on my machine (Windows 7 x64) –  payala Feb 20 '13 at 20:17

Take a look a logview4net it's free and has a different take on viewing log files.

A free (open source) log monitor / log viewer for:

* Files and folders
* Incomming UDP traffic
* EventLogs
* SQL- Server tables
* Atom and RSS feeds
* StdOut and StdErr
share|improve this answer

I would recommend logFaces, it has fantastic real-time log viewer based on eclipse-style design.

enter image description here

share|improve this answer
Although it should be noted that this software does appear to require installation on a server, as well as a client, and is commercial software requiring a licence. –  Lucanos Aug 21 at 1:45

I wrote my own little logviewer just because of that, its really raw at the moment, but would be an ok starting point if anyone wanted to extend it.

share|improve this answer

Installing MSYS gives you a close version to a Unix environment on Windows, you get all the main binaries. Using these tools you can achieve all the functionality you request using standard commands like tail, grep, less, etc.

share|improve this answer

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.