I've been getting alot of segv crashes in gnome-shell and although the apport window has alot of info, it's not very user friendly (window is really small, no way of searching, no way of saving a copy to text file etc).

Is there a way I can access the information available to apport directly from the terminal? Does gnome-shell save traceback logs somewhere?

I know there's a logfile for apport in /var/log but that log file doesn't offer nearly the same level of detail.

  • Thank you for the link, I've looked at but /var/logs doesn't have any of the traceback info after the crash. I've re-written the question to focus more on that. Commented Feb 21, 2018 at 9:53
  • The apport log file should only hold errors of the apport software itself, not the system messages it shows. Those are contained in the major log files as explained in the question I linked, most importantly syslog and kern.log.
    – dessert
    Commented Feb 21, 2018 at 9:56
  • It's not a dupe... the files are in a special place...
    – Zanna
    Commented Feb 21, 2018 at 14:46

1 Answer 1


You can find the files in /var/crash. That's pretty much the whole answer to your question, so to make my answer more interesting I'll show you how I know this, which might interest others who want to test crashing behaviour.

$ cat ~/playground/crash.c
/* crash.c - simple program that crashes by raising a segmentation fault */

#include <signal.h>

int main(void)

The above program was written by Eliah Kagan. I have compiled it into an executable binary file called crash in the same directory (using the command gcc -ansi -pedantic -Wall -Wextra -o crash crash.c). This program reliably segfaults :)

Bash won't itself crash when I run this program, so Apport won't complain, but for interesting reasons discussed at great length in this chat, ksh will itself crash when I use it to call a program that crashes, and Apport will create a report for it. Let's try it!

zanna@toaster:/var/crash$ ksh93
$ /home/zanna/playground/crash
Memory fault(coredump)
$ exit
Segmentation fault (core dumped)
zanna@toaster:/var/crash$ ls
zanna@toaster:/var/crash$ file _bin_ksh93.1000.crash 
_bin_ksh93.1000.crash: ASCII text, with very long lines

There you go.

After you make the report, you will get 2 more files here, one ending in .upload and one ending in .uploaded, which may or may not be more readable, but in any case, contain the information sent by Apport.


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