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GxTail: Overview

GxTail is a tool for troubleshooting SnapProtect jobs by analyzing log file content. Many of its features, such as filtering out messages that are less relevant, help reduce your debugging time. You can set bookmarks to help you move quickly to places in the log file that are most important, and save the context of a session so that you can return to the same set of open log files you had when you saved it.

GxTail works dynamically, similar to the UNIX tail command. It enables you to view real-time log file data as data is appended to the open file. If necessary, you can turn off automatic updating for just one file, or for all files open in the tool.

Important: GxTail only reads your log files. It does not write to them or alter them. However, you can save log contents into a new file.

Note: GxTail manages log files up to 500MB in size. Files larger than 500 MB might open, but might not function as expected.

Access the Tool

The GxTail tool is located on any Windows computer where the SnapProtect software is installed. To run the tool, navigate to the Installation_Directory/Base folder and click GxTail.exe.

Exception: GxTail is not supported on UNIX computers.

User Interface

GxTail provides a customizable graphical interface for interacting with its many functions. A toolbar gives one-click access to commonly used features and capabilities. This figure illustrates some of the major features:

Tip: After you become familiar with GxTail, and its features and commands, using keyboard shortcuts and shortcut menus will speed your work.

Basic Features

The following GxTail features support basic troubleshooting of issues from related log files.

Opening Files

You can open one log file, many log files each in its own tab, or many log files merged in sequence by time stamp on a single tab. Files are always opened for read-only viewing, but you can save the contents of a file into a new file for further manipulation or analysis.

Finding Content

You can search for content by matching simple text strings or complex regular expressions.

Filtering Messages

Extends the Find feature's functionality by controlling which messages are visible in the log window. The filtering process tests for a string or regular expression to include or exclude, then displays messages accordingly.

Marking Message Text

You can highlight text strings in messages to make them stand out visually for quick identification.

Using Bookmarks

Bookmark log messages to quickly move between areas of interest in the log by using the Next Bookmark and Previous Bookmark functions.

Working Offline

By default, GxTail continues to append messages to log files while you have them open. You can switch Working Offline on and off.

Sending Log Data by Email

Distribute filtered log data to other users and stakeholders.

Working with Tabs

Similar to a web browser, GxTail opens a log file in a tab. A contextual menu opened by left-clicking the tab provides access to many frequently used functions, along with a few that are not available elsewhere in the tool.

Using GxTail Named Profiles

You can use GxTail named profiles to save filter and marker settings that are useful for troubleshooting certain types of recurring issues. You can also send these profiles to other users.

Taking a Snapshot of Logs and Context

Within GxTail, you can create a snapshot of all open files, which GxTail packages together with its overall context, into a compressed .zip file for archiving or distributing to others. You can also update an existing snapshot without re-creating it.

Tools

GxTail provides tools inside the GxTail environment to help you troubleshoot issues.

Tool Description
Error Lookup Use the Error Lookup tool to view plain-text descriptions of errors that are returned by the SnapProtect software, or to view descriptions of operating system-level errors (such as Windows, AIX and Solaris).
Log File Sequencer Use Log File Sequencer to merge the messages from multiple log files, and arrange the result by time stamp. You can view all the interactions between related processes that generate separate log files.
Cabinet (CAB) and Zip File Extractor Unpack cabinet files that contain multiple log files, and extract compressed (zip) files.
Open an Explorer Window to the Selected Path   If you select text in the active log file window in GxTail, one command automatically opens a Windows Explorer window directly to the folder.
Regular Expression Builder Use the Regular Expression Builder to build complex text strings that describe a search pattern for the Marker or Filter functions. The builder is available from dialog boxes that accept regular expressions, and from the Tools menu.