"Gnuplot is a tool used to generate trends and graphs. It is
typically used for time-series-based data gathering, but is not
restricted to this; static data can also be used. Gnuplot can be
run in either batch or on the fly, with the results being presented
by a graphics viewer or Web browser. This article demonstrates how
to use gnuplot using a batch file to generate data collected from
sar and other data sources. Gnuplot is very rich in command options
using the set operator. However, to generate basic graphs using
line or boxes, it requires some knowledge of the documentation.
"For this demonstration, I will present the graphs using a Web
"Gnuplot converts raw tabular data into a graphic file image.
Popular formats are png, pdf, and jpeg, and they can then be
presented either on the fly or directly to an X terminal, Web page,
or a general graphic viewer utility. The image can also be imported
into documents. A command interface is used to interact with
gnuplot using the 'set' commands to specify how the image is to be
formatted and presented. Typically this includes the sizing of the
graph, colors to be used, the scale, x,y coordinates, and the
output image name. The plot command is then used to actually
generate the image using the gnuplot engine."