Is there a background program for Fedora/Linux that keeps track of (important) events (like startup and shutdown time)?

Also interested in GUI tools.


Most Unix-like systems have numerous logging daemons which cover specific areas and subsystems. The kernel log daemon on Linux is klogd and it would be where to look for system startup (along with the more general logd daemon.) All such logs are located in the /var/logs directory.

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  • Thanks for your answer. I've checked the "messages" file (/var/log) on a Fedora system that booted up at 4 PM, in order to find a "proof" that the system was started at that exact time. The bottom entry is from 9 AM today. So this file doesn't seem to contain time information of when the system was started or shut down. I couldn't find any file called something like "logd". The other files in this directory don't sound like what I'm looking for (except "maillog", which is empty). Where do I have to look? – basic6 Jun 28 '11 at 14:30
  • Kernel messages, which is where you'd probably find the earliest boot time messages are in /var/log/message – Andrew Lambert Jun 29 '11 at 7:27
  • I've double-checked it on Fedora and Ubuntu. The Fedora systems save the shutdown message "kernel: Kernel logging (proc) stopped." and the startup message "kernel: imklog 5.7.9, log source = /proc/kmsg started." in /var/log/messages - that's what I was looking for. On Ubuntu the log file is called "syslog". – basic6 Jun 29 '11 at 9:35

Fedora keeps boot logs in /var/log. Each boot event file is appended with the date in the format -yyyymmdd. This gives you the date of a boot event.

You can find the time this file was created, thus the time of the boot event if the file has not been edited.

Use the 'stat' command like this:

# stat /var/log/boot.log-20120614

Replace the 8 digit date on the end of the file name with one that corresponds to a log on your system.

I hope this helps.

This also works in Ubuntu, but only the most recent boot information is saved, and the file is simply /var/log/boot.log

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