Service management

Be careful disabling/stopping services. Some other applications might stop functioning because they depend on a disabled service. Try one by one.

Most recent distributions use the Systemd system manager. Some still use the old SysVinit system manager.

The easiest way to discover which system manager is in use, is by using the use the pstree command and to check the first process ever run on your system:

$ pstree | head -n 5

Getting a list of services

To list services on Linux, when you are on a systemd system:

$ systemctl list-units --type=service

This command will show you only the services that are active or the services that have failed (in red) on the system.

List all services:

$ systemctl list-units --type=service --all

Only loaded services are listed. On boot, systemd loads unit files and it may choose not to load a specific service if it finds that it won’t be used by the system.

List services by state (active, inactive, activating, deactivating, failed, not-found or dead):

$ systemctl list-units --state=<state1>,<state2>

In order to list all service files available, use list-unit-files:

$ systemctl list-unit-files --type=service

Status of a service

To verify whether a service is active or not, run this command (for example, for apache2):

$ sudo systemctl status apache2

Managing services

To start/stop/restart a service in Linux:

$ sudo systemctl start <service>
$ sudo systemctl stop <service>
$ sudo systemctl restart <service>

To force the service to reload its configuration files:

$ sudo systemctl reload <service>

Enable/disable a service at boot:

$ sudo systemctl enable <service>
$ sudo systemctl disable <service>