Install Cockpit on Ubuntu 18

Every Linux guru loves to show off their L33T (elite) cli skills, but sometimes a nice GUI rules. Like when you are monitoring a bunch of servers and just don’t feel like messing around with cryptic commands and ascii characters.

One tool I like for a simple overall of servers is “Cockpit”. After you log in it gives you the basics every sysadmin wants, CPU, Memory, Disk I/O and Network Traffic.

You can get details by selecting the appropriate selection in the sidebar. It’s not the most feature rich server GUI, but it nails the basics, it’s easy to install, and it does the job. Did I mention it’s free?

Read more on the project here:

https://cockpit-project.org/

To install on a server you wish to monitor, log into it and open a command line. If you are using Ubuntu, just hit CTL+T.

Enter each line individually:

sudo add-apt-repository universe
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install cockpit cockpit-docker

Heads up: if you are run a firewall on your local machine, you will have to open port 9090.

Now that every thing is installed, you can access Cockpit.

From a PC:

  • Open your web browser
  • In the address bar, type in the ip address of the server plus the port like so:
192.168.1.23:9090 
(YOUR server ip address, not this example)

That should open Cockpit to the login screen.

Now log in and you should be at the main menu seeing a bunch of great statistics on your server.

Feel free to select items from the sidebar to get details of your server.

That’s it. I hope you found this useful!

Byobu Autostart

Byobu is a great terminal multiplexer.

You can usually get it on a debian system via:

    • apt install byobu

After it’s installed, just invoke it from the cli:

    • byobu

Now that it’s open, here some common navigation tips:

  • F1 – Brings up the Help and Configuration page
  • F2 – Opens another terminal.  This is indicated at the bottom via: 2:–
  • F3 – Change focus,/go FORWARD one screen.
  • F4 – Change focus/go BACK one screen.

At any time you may look at bottom to see which session you are in:   1:–, 2:–, 3:–, etc

Those commands are the most used and will get you goign in a jiffy, however there are many other options you can read about on the Help page, which can be accessed via F1.

One thing we get alot is, “How do you set it to auto start when I log in?

Easy, just type:

    • byobu-enable

Don’t want it to autostart anymore?  Type:

byobu-disable

That’s it!

Find Your Linux Version

The CLI commands to find your Linux version are easy as pie, but they are also easy as pie to forget.  Let this post be your goto reminder.  To use these commands, simply open a terminal shell. Then type in any of the commans below.  Don’t type the dollar sign that’s preceding each command;  It just represents the shell prompt.

My Favorite Way

hostnamectl

KERNEL INFO

All Kernel Information

$ uname -a

Abbreviated Kernel Version

$ uname -r

DISTRIBUTION AND VERSION

$ lsb_release -a

or…

$ cat /etc/lsb-release

or…

$ cat/etc/issue.net

Also try…

Ubuntu

$ lsb_release -a

Debian

$ cat /etc/debian_version

CentOS

$ cat /etc/centos-release