How To Install Logwatch on Ubuntu 20.04 LTS

Install Logwatch on Ubuntu 20.04

In this tutorial, we will show you how to install Logwatch on Ubuntu 20.04 LTS. For those of you who didn’t know, Logwatch is a customizable, pluggable log-monitoring system. It will go through your logs for a given period of time and generate a report and then mail the details to your email.

This article assumes you have at least basic knowledge of Linux, know how to use the shell, and most importantly, you host your site on your own VPS. The installation is quite simple and assumes you are running in the root account, if not you may need to add ‘sudo‘ to the commands to get root privileges. I will show you the step-by-step installation of the Logwatch monitoring log file on Ubuntu 20.04 (Focal Fossa). You can follow the same instructions for Ubuntu 18.04, 16.04, and any other Debian-based distribution like Linux Mint.


  • A server running one of the following operating systems: Ubuntu 20.04, 18.04, 16.04, and any other Debian-based distribution like Linux Mint.
  • It’s recommended that you use a fresh OS install to prevent any potential issues.
  • SSH access to the server (or just open Terminal if you’re on a desktop).
  • A non-root sudo user or access to the root user. We recommend acting as a non-root sudo user, however, as you can harm your system if you’re not careful when acting as the root.

Install Logwatch on Ubuntu 20.04 LTS Focal Fossa

Step 1. First, make sure that all your system packages are up-to-date by running the following apt commands in the terminal.

sudo apt update
sudo apt upgrade

Step 2. Installing Logwatch on Ubuntu 20.04.

By default, Logwatch is available to the official Ubuntu repositories. Now run the following command below to install it to your system:

sudo apt install logwatch

After the installation is completed, you can confirm it using the command below:

logwatch --version

Step 3. Configure Logwatch.

Now we create a temporary directory for Logwatch to work:

sudo mkdir /var/cache/logwatch

Configuration shouldn’t be edited in the install directory (/usr/share/logwatch). Copy logwatch.conf to /etc/logwatch before editing:

sudo cp /usr/share/logwatch/default.conf/logwatch.conf /etc/logwatch/conf/

Basic customization is:

Output = file|mail|stdout
MailTo =
MailFrom =
Detail = Low, Med, High, or a number
Service = All
Service = service-name
Range = Yesterday|Today|All
Format = text|html

To run the Logwatch manually at any time, you can use the command below:


A summary of the command-line switches described on the man page can be obtained with the ‘--help‘ option:

logwatch --help

Congratulations! You have successfully installed Logwatch. Thanks for using this tutorial for installing the Logwatch on Ubuntu 20.04 LTS Focal Fossa system. For additional help or useful information, we recommend you check the official Logwatch website.

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r00t is a seasoned Linux system administrator with a wealth of experience in the field. Known for his contributions to, r00t has authored numerous tutorials and guides, helping users navigate the complexities of Linux systems. His expertise spans across various Linux distributions, including Ubuntu, CentOS, and Debian. r00t's work is characterized by his ability to simplify complex concepts, making Linux more accessible to users of all skill levels. His dedication to the Linux community and his commitment to sharing knowledge makes him a respected figure in the field.
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