Ask Different is a question and answer site for power users of Apple hardware and software. It's 100% free, no registration required.

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

Is there any way I can log everything of what happens in Mac OS X snow leopard and not just what I can see in the console? I can barely see errors logs there, I would like to see which applications asked for which resource in my computer and log all of this activity.

How can I do this? Which is the most accurate and in-depth log that I can get of what happens on my computer?

share|improve this question
up vote 2 down vote accepted

What you can see in logs are what applications write there. All Apple software writes to the Apple logger database. You can see this and what is written to syslog and files in The only easy way to read the database is via Note that you might need to start under an admin user to see all the entries.

Not all you are asking for like "applications asked for which resource" is logged by the application so this information is not normally available. What can be done to get more information is use some Unix tools like lsof to get a snapshot of what files and sockets are open or Apple development tools like dtrace, googling for examples gave this blog which has scripts to record what files are used by which processes.

share|improve this answer
Many thanks! I'm trying them our! – Saturnix Jan 13 '13 at 23:19

So you want to peek inside? Get ready.

You need to get the Instruments app. It is part of Apple's developer tools. It's part of XCode which you download from the App Store. You also get the XCode IDE, iOS simulator, and more.

It is built on DTrace, so you get the same power with a nice GUI!

share|improve this answer

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.