1. Home
  2. Linux

How to set up the Glances system monitor on Linux

Glances is a powerful system monitor application that is accessible via a web browser over the network, or on the local machine. It can monitor everything from CPU usage, available system Memory, Load, Disk Input/Output, Filesystem capacity, and much more. The app is free, and the source code is available on Github.

In this guide, we’ll go over how to set up the Glances system monitor on Linux. However, Linux is not the only operating system that it can run on. If you run a Windows server or even Mac OS, it works there too, as it is cross-platform.

Install Glances

The Glances app is available for installation to Linux users in several ways, such as a self-installing Bash script, an installable module from Python Pip, and installation packages on several popular Linux operating systems ( Ubuntu, Arch Linux, Debian, Fedora,etc.).

To start the installation of Glances on your Linux operating system, launch a terminal window by pressing Ctrl + Alt + T or Ctrl + Shift + T. Then, follow the command-line instructions outlined below for the OS you use.

Ubuntu

The Glances application is readily available for installation on Ubuntu Linux, via the “Universe” software repository. To install the program on your system, use the Apt command below.

sudo apt install glances

Debian

On Debian Linux, the Glances system monitoring program is installable via the “Main” software repository. To get it installed on Debian, use the following Apt-get command in a terminal window.

sudo apt-get install glances

Arch Linux

Glances is installable on Arch Linux through the “Community” software repository. To enable “Community” on Arch Linux, open up the Pacman configuration file in Nano with the command below.

sudo nano -w /etc/pacman.conf

Scroll through the configuration file with the Down Arrow on the keyboard, and locate “Community.” From there, remove the # symbol from in front of it, along with all of the lines directly below it.

After editing the “Community” software repository in the Pacman configuration file, save the edits by pressing Ctrl + O, and exit the editor with Ctrl + X.

When the editing of the Pacman configuration file is complete, resync Arch Linux with the official servers.

sudo pacman -Syy

With everything synced, you’ll be able to install the Glances app on Arch Linux with the command below.

sudo pacman -S glances

Fedora

If you want to get Glances on Fedora Linux, there’s no need to enable RPMFusion, or any other third-party software repository. Instead, the app is readily available in the primary Fedora software repositories. To set it up, run the following dnf command below.

sudo dnf install glances

OpenSUSE

On OpenSUSE Linux, Glances is available for installation via the “OSS All” software repository. To start the installation, use the following Zypper command in a terminal window.

sudo zypper install glances

Snap package

Glances is up on the Snap store. So, if you’re having trouble getting the Glances system monitoring application installed on your distribution of choice, but can install Snaps, this installation method is the way to go.

To install Glances via the Snap store, start by enabling the Snapd runtime. Once the runtime is enabled, use the snap install command below to get the app working.

sudo snap install glances

Access Glances

The Glances application is accessible to monitor your system in console mode by running in a terminal window, and by way of a web browser. In this guide, we’ll show you how to access and use Glances in both ways.

Terminal

Although Glances focuses heavily on the web interface, it is entirely possible to take a look at the system monitoring application from the terminal window that the software is run on. To access it, launch a terminal with Ctrl + Alt + T or Ctrl + Alt + T. Then, once the command-line is open, run the command below to access Glances.

glances

From here you’ll be able to monitor many aspects to your Linux server or workstation. The monitoring dashboard can quickly be closed by pressing Ctrl + C on the keyboard.

Web browser

The Glances system monitor has a stellar system monitoring tool for the web. It runs as a simple web server on port 61208 and is accessible to anyone with a web browser connected to the same network.

To start up Glances in web browser mode, launch a terminal window with the keyboard combination Ctrl + Alt + T or Ctrl + Shift + T. From there, use the pip install command to load up the “bottle” module.

Note: you must install pip to use bottle

sudo pip install bottle

Following the installation of bottle, run Glances in web browser mode. Be sure to add the “&” symbol at the end, as it is required or it will not be possible to send the software to the background.

glances -w &

Disown the process and send it to the background using disown.

disown

From here, you’ll be able to access the Glances monitoring interface from any browser connected to the same network with:

hostname-of-linux-machine:61208

Need to end the Glances browser UI? Run:

killall glances

Leave a comment