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

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

I have a problem. An application has spat a whole load of log text into a Shell window that needs to be captured. If we could skip passed the "probably shouldn't have had an application output it's stdout anywhere other than a log file", is there a tool/command that I can use to capture the program output?

Other than highlighting all of the text with a mouse and copying to a text file. There are 250,000 lines... :)

share|improve this question
Can you run it again and redirect into a text file? myprog > log.txt – jonsca Jul 25 '11 at 7:58
I think if I suggest that to the offending admin he might pop. I have since discovered a method of setting selection markers on the window with the right click menu. This way I can easily select the area of text I am interested in. Then copy and paste. Not a quick task, just getting in onto the clipboard seems to take 5 minutes! I'm interested to hear any other answers though, so I'm not answering my own question. There must be a better way! – tigerswithguitars Jul 25 '11 at 8:12
The shell only executes commands. The window is a terminal. And it would help if you told us which terminal program you are using. From OpenSuSE I'm guessing it's KDE Konsole, which has File - Save Output As. – grawity Jul 25 '11 at 8:13
Many apologies, you are right grawity. I am using KDE Konsole... but I have no file menu option, I have; session, edit, view, bookmarks, settings, help. None of which have a save output, annoyingly. – tigerswithguitars Jul 25 '11 at 8:39
@tigers: It must be a different Konsole version than the one I have (2.6.4, KDE 4.6.5). Can't offer any more suggestions :( – grawity Jul 25 '11 at 9:01
up vote 1 down vote accepted

If you can run the program again, you have 3 options:

  1. If you don't need to see the output as the program runs, use simple redirection (as jonsca has already suggested) :

    $ yourVerboseProgram > anyNameForYourLogFile

  2. If you want to see the program's output as it runs, you have two (at least) options:

    a) Run it as described above, while in a second terminal running tail -f yourLogFile

    b) ('b' for 'better') Use tee:

    $ yourVerboseProgram | tee anyNameForYourLogFile

  3. If 2. applies and the program is interactive (needs your input as it runs), use the script program:

    $ script aLogFile.log
    Script started, file is aLogFile.log
    $ yourVerboseProgram

    (the program running... And exiting.) Then you exit the script:

    $ exit
    Script done, file is aLogFile.log

    The only problem with option 3 is that everything is being logged, including your keystrokes like pressing "Backspace" etc.

share|improve this answer

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

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