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How To View Apache Log Files on Linux

View Apache Log Files on Linux

In this tutorial, we will show you how to view Apache log files on Linux. For those of you who didn’t know, the Apache access log is one of several log files produced by an Apache HTTP server. This particular log file is responsible for recording data for all requests processed by the Apache server. Apache access log can be used to examine a detailed log of who has been to your website and track errors that are happening when users take some actions on your website.

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 view of Apache web server log files on Linux.


  • A server running one of the following operating systems: Ubuntu and any other Debian-based distribution or RHEL-based.
  • 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.

View Apache Log Files on Linux

Step 1. Apache Access logs.

By default, you can find the Apache access log file at the following path:

  • /var/log/apache/access.log
  • /var/log/apache2/access.log
  • /etc/httpd/logs/access_log

Display the Last 20 Entries of the Access Logs.

Run the following command below to read the last part of the file, and the -20 command directs it to display the previous 20 entries:

sudo tail -20 /var/log/apache2/access.log

Display a Specific Term from Access Logs.

You can run the grep command to filter your report by certain keywords. For example below:

sudo grep GET /var/log/apache2/access.log

Step 2. Apache Error logs.

Display the Last 20 Entries of the Error Logs.

For example, you can log in to your server using SSH and type the following command to view the last 20 lines in the Apache error log:

sudo tail -20 /var/log/apache2/error.log

When you’re monitoring Apache logs, you’ll be able to see many unwanted files being logged on the console. This can make your job difficult, but there’s a way out. What you must do is exclude some of the files you don’t really need from the log message.

tail -f /var/log/apache2/error.log | egrep -v "(.gif|.jpg|.png|.swf|.ico)"

For additional resources on installing Apache, read the post below:

Congratulations! You have successfully monitored the Apache access log and the Apache error log. For more information about the Apache access log and the Apache error log, please check the official Apache 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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