(This change is in v0.10.0+)

One of the new features in the upcoming v0.10.0 release of lnav is support for tailing log files on remote hosts via SSH. This feature allows you to view local files and files from multiple remote hosts alongside each other in the log view. The only setup required is to ensure the machines can be accessed via SSH without any interaction, meaning the host key must have been previously accepted and public key authentication configured. Opening a remote file is then simply a matter of specifying the location using the common scp syntax (i.e. user@host:/path/to/file).

When lnav accesses a remote host, it transfers an agent (called the “tailer”) to the host to handle file system requests from lnav. The agent is an αcτµαlly pδrταblε εxεcµταblε that should run on most X86 Operating Systems. The agent will monitor the files of interest and synchronize their contents back to the host machine. In addition, the agent can be used to satisfy interactive requests for TAB-completion of remote file paths and previewing directory and file contents.

The following asciicast shows lnav opening log files on MacOS and FreeBSD: