last command in Linux with Examples

The last command in Linux is used to display the list of all the users logged in and out since the file /var/log/wtmp was created. One or more usernames can be given as an argument to display their login in (and out) time and their host-name.

Syntax:

last [options] [username...] [tty...]

Example:

Options:

  • -[number]: This option is used to specify the number of lines to display.

    Example:

    last -5

    Output:

  • -R: This option is used to hide the host-name field.

    Example:

    last -R basil

  • -F: This option is used to display the login and logout time including the dates.

    Example:

    last -F

  • -a: This option is used is to display the host-name in the last column.

    Example:

    last -a
  • -s, -t: This option is used to display within a specific time period.(-s) since and (-t) until, these commands are used to frame the time period.

    Example:

    last -s yesterday -t today

    The valid formats for the above commands are:

    YYYYMMDDhhmmss
    YYYY-MM-DD hh:mm:ss
    YYYY-MM-DD hh:mm      (seconds will be set to 00)
    YYYY-MM-DD            (time will be set to 00:00:00)
    hh:mm:ss              (date will be set to today)
    hh:mm                 (date will be set to today, seconds to 00)
    now
    yesterday             (time is set to 00:00:00)
    today                 (time is set to 00:00:00)
    tomorrow              (time is set to 00:00:00)
    +5min
    -5days
    
  • -d: This option is used to translate the IP address back into its host-name.

    Example:

    last -d
  • -x: This option is used to display information like system down entries and run level changes.

    Example:

    last -x
  • -w: This option is used to display full user and domain names.

    Example:

    last -w basil
  • –help: This option is used to display help regarding all options belonging to the last command.

    Syntax:

    last --help


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