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This page is a translated version of the page Systemd and the translation is 1% complete.
Outdated translations are marked like this.

systemd é uma opção moderna para sistemas de SysV-style init e rc (run command)[1]. No Gentoo ele é suportado como um sistema de inicialização alternativo.

Switching init systems is a non trivial operation that has implications for how the system is configured, and sometimes for what software can be installed or not. Generally, an init system will be chosen at installation time (i.e. by downloading either a systemd or an openrc stage3 tarball), and only changed if necessary. In true Gentoo style, in addition to systemd and OpenRC, several init systems are supported.

If systemd is being unwantedly pulled in as a dependency, see Gentoo without systemd.

If updating from <=sys-apps/systemd-203 check the upgrade sub-article.

The core around which all distributions are built is the Linux kernel. It is the layer between the user programs and the system hardware. Gentoo provides its users several possible kernel sources. A full listing with description is available at the Kernel overview page.

For amd64-based systems, Gentoo recommends the sys-kernel/gentoo-sources package.

Choose an appropriate kernel source and install it using emerge:

root #emerge --ask sys-kernel/gentoo-sources


systemd utiliza vários recursos das versões mais novas do Kernel Linux. No momento, a menor versão do kernel para utilizar o systemd é 2.6.39. Em versões mais recentes do pacote sys-kernel/gentoo-sources, existe uma forma conveniente para definir as configurações do kernel para utilização do systemd (veja Kernel/Configuration para mais detalhes):

KERNEL Configuração rápida utilizando gentoo-sources
Gentoo Linux --->
  Support for init systems, system and service managers --->
    [*] systemd

Para configurar essas opções manualmente (que é a unica solução quando não estiver utilizando sys-kernel/gentoo-sources), as seguintes configurações do kernel são necessarias e recomendadas:

KERNEL Configurações obrigatórias

Se o sistema estiver utilizando o scheduler de I/O BFQ, é recomendado habilitar a opção "BFQ hierarchical scheduling support" pelos menus "Enable the block layer -> IO Schedulers".

KERNEL BFQ scheduler
IO Schedulers  --->
	<*> BFQ I/O scheduler
        [*]   BFQ hierarchical scheduling support

Para uma lista mais atualizada, veja a sessão "REQUIREMENTS" no repositório oficial do projeto README.

Ensure /usr is present at boot time

For a split /usr configuration, use an initramfs to mount /usr before starting systemd. For now, this means using sys-kernel/dracut or sys-kernel/genkernel version 4.1 or greater. Set aside time now to migrate:

root #emerge --ask sys-kernel/genkernel
root #emerge --ask sys-kernel/dracut

When using dracut, enable the usrmount module if it is not automatically enabled to mount /usr automatically.

FILE /etc/dracut.conf.d/usrmount.conf
# Dracut modules to add to the default
add_dracutmodules+=" usrmount "

When genkernel is used, before rebuilding the kernel, be sure to set the /usr in genkernel's configuration file /etc/initramfs.mounts. This will mount /usr during the initramfs process:

FILE /etc/initramfs.mounts
root #genkernel --install all

See the Initramfs guide for more alternatives.

Using LVM and initramfs

When LVM is used and the system is booted using an initramfs, the initramfs will have to be created using sys-kernel/genkernel by running:

root #genkernel --lvm <target>

<target> is either initramfs or one of the other genkernel targets which imply the creation of an initramfs. For more information, look at the output of genkernel --help:

user $genkernel --help

USE flags

USE flags for sys-apps/systemd System and service manager for Linux

acl Add support for Access Control Lists
apparmor Enable support for the AppArmor application security system
audit Enable support for sys-process/audit
boot Enable EFI boot manager and stub loader
cgroup-hybrid Default to hybrid (legacy) cgroup hierarchy instead of unified (modern).
cryptsetup Enable cryptsetup tools (includes unit generator for crypttab)
curl Enable support for uploading journals
dns-over-tls Enable DNS-over-TLS support
elfutils Enable coredump stacktraces in the journal
fido2 Enable FIDO2 support
gcrypt Enable use of dev-libs/libgcrypt for various features
gnutls Prefer net-libs/gnutls as SSL/TLS provider (ineffective with USE=-ssl)
homed Enable portable home directories
http Enable embedded HTTP server in journald
idn Enable support for Internationalized Domain Names
importd Enable import daemon
iptables Use libiptc from net-firewall/iptables for NAT support in systemd-networkd; this is used only if the running kernel does not support nftables
kernel-install Enable kernel-install
kmod Enable kernel module loading via sys-apps/kmod
lz4 Enable lz4 compression for the journal
lzma Support for LZMA compression algorithm
openssl Enable use of dev-libs/openssl for various features
pam Add support for PAM (Pluggable Authentication Modules) - DANGEROUS to arbitrarily flip
pcre Add support for Perl Compatible Regular Expressions
pkcs11 Enable PKCS#11 support for cryptsetup and homed
policykit Enable PolicyKit (polkit) authentication support
pwquality Enable password quality checking in homed
qrcode Enable qrcode output support in journal
resolvconf Install resolvconf symlink for systemd-resolve
seccomp Enable seccomp (secure computing mode) to perform system call filtering at runtime to increase security of programs
secureboot Automatically sign efi executables using user specified key
selinux !!internal use only!! Security Enhanced Linux support, this must be set by the selinux profile or breakage will occur
split-usr Enable behavior to support maintaining /bin, /lib*, /sbin and /usr/sbin separately from /usr/bin and /usr/lib*
sysv-utils Install sysvinit compatibility symlinks and manpages for init, telinit, halt, poweroff, reboot, runlevel, and shutdown
test Enable dependencies and/or preparations necessary to run tests (usually controlled by FEATURES=test but can be toggled independently)
tpm Enable TPM support
ukify Enable systemd-ukify
vanilla Disable Gentoo-specific behavior and compatibility quirks
xkb Depend on x11-libs/libxkbcommon to allow logind to control the X11 keymap
zstd Enable support for ZSTD compression


Enable the systemd USE flag globally (in make.conf). The elogind USE flag should also be disabled to prevent conflicts with the systemd-logind service. It is also possible to switch to a systemd subprofile to use saner USE flags defaults in which case it is not necessary to change make.conf:

root #eselect profile list

Finally update the system with the new profile:

root #emerge -avDN @world
Once this command is complete, it is important follow the Configuration steps.

Dependency problems

When replacing OpenRC with systemd, several dependency problems may occur.

If sys-apps/sysvinit blocks sys-apps/systemd, try disabling the netifrc USE flag for sys-apps/openrc. Then rebuild OpenRC temporarily to break the dependency with net-misc/netifrc followed by a depclean operation:

root #emerge --oneshot sys-apps/openrc
root #emerge --ask --depclean

If sys-apps/sysvinit is still blocking sys-apps/systemd, make sure it and sys-apps/openrc are not contained in the world file:

root #emerge --deselect sys-apps/openrc sys-apps/sysvinit

If sys-fs/udev blocks sys-apps/systemd, sys-fs/udev might be registered in the world file. Try to resolve this by deselecting it:

root #emerge --deselect sys-fs/udev

sys-apps/systemd contains udev. Once installed, sys-fs/udev can be removed as systemd will be the provider for the virtual/udev requirement.

If the @system set provides sys-fs/eudev, virtual/udev and virtual/libudev may be preventing systemd. To make portage resolve the problem, after setting the USE flag, try to reinstall the virtuals:

root #emerge --oneshot virtual/udev virtual/libudev


This is no longer necessary with sys-apps/systemd when the sysv-utils USE is enabled. This defaults to on with at least version 239 in Gentoo

In order to run systemd, switch the init that the executable kernel (or the initramfs) uses.

The services that are set up for the previous service manager will not be automatically started. This is because the system is switching to a different service manager. In order to obtain back the functionality like networking or a login manager, these services will need to be enabled again. More information about this follows in the services section later in this article.
In case the migration yields a broken state, it is always possible to boot back into the default service manager (OpenRC) by undoing this init change step. This allows safe return and a way to follow through the troubleshooting section at the end of this article to fix the problem.

The following subsections document how to switch the init in one of the boot managers or the kernel.

GRUB Legacy (0.x)

The init=/lib/systemd/systemd argument should be added to the kernel command-line. An example excerpt from grub.conf would look like so:

FILE /boot/grub/grub.confExample GRUB config for systemd
title=Gentoo with systemd
root (hd0,0)
kernel /vmlinuz root=/dev/sda2 init=/lib/systemd/systemd

Should the system boot using OpenRC, try using real_init instead of init.


When grub-mkconfig is used, add the init option to GRUB_CMDLINE_LINUX:

This is not needed when using an initramfs generated by dracut with systemd inside as the initramfs already starts systemd.
FILE /etc/default/grubConfigure GRUB for systemd
# Append parameters to the linux kernel command line

When the GRUB configuration file is written by hand (experts only), append the init= parameter to the linux or linux16 command.

FILE /boot/grub/grub.cfgExample GRUB2 configuration fragment
linux /vmlinuz-3.10.9 root=UUID=508868e4-54c6-4e6b-84b0-b3b28b1656b6 init=/lib/systemd/systemd


Yaboot is a boot loader for PowerPC-based hardware running Linux, particularly New World ROM Macintosh systems.

The init=/lib/systemd/systemd argument should be added directly after the kernel command-line. An example from yaboot.conf:

FILE /etc/yaboot.confExample yaboot config for systemd

For the changes to take effect, the ybin command must be run each time the yaboot.conf file is modified.

In-kernel config

The init configuration can also be hard-coded in the kernel configuration. See Processor type and features -> Built-in kernel command line. Note that this technique works for both GRUB Legacy and GRUB.


systemd has the ability to update in-place on a running system (no reboot necessary). After an upgrade to systemd has emerged, run the following command:

root #systemctl daemon-reexec


systemd supports a few system configuration files to set the most basic system details.

After installing systemd, run the following:

root #systemd-machine-id-setup
root #systemd-firstboot --prompt
root #systemctl preset-all
If systemd-firstboot is not ran, it will automatically run on next boot. However, it interrupts the normal boot process, preventing access to the system from users who don't have access to the interactive console - like accessing a server via SSH.
While some system configuration parameters can be updated by modifying the appropriate configuration files, most settings are managed using utilities that require systemd to be running. In this case, it is safe to reboot the computer with systemd now and use the hostnamectl, localectl, and timedatectl utilities - indeed this may be required to be able to use them.

Machine ID

Create a machine ID for journaling to work. This can be done through the following command:

root #systemd-machine-id-setup
The systemd-machine-id-setup command also has an impact on the systemd-networkd service. If this command is not run the system may exhibit strange behavior like network interfaces not coming up or network addresses not being applied.


To set the hostname, create/edit /etc/hostname and simply provide the desired hostname.

When booted using systemd, a tool called hostnamectl exists for editing /etc/hostname and /etc/machine-info. To change the hostname, run:

root #hostnamectl set-hostname <HOSTNAME>

Refer to man hostnamectl for more options.


Usually, locales will be properly migrated from OpenRC when installing systemd. When required, the locale can be set in /etc/locale.conf as per the Gentoo handbook instructions:

FILE /etc/locale.confSystem locale configuration

Once booted with systemd, the tool localectl is used to set locale and console or X11 keymaps. To change the system locale, run the following command:

root #localectl set-locale LANG=<LOCALE>

To change the virtual console keymap:

root #localectl set-keymap <KEYMAP>

And finally, to set the X11 layout:

root #localectl set-x11-keymap <LAYOUT>

If needed the model, variant and options can be specified as well:

root #localectl set-x11-keymap <LAYOUT> <MODEL> <VARIANT> <OPTIONS>

After doing any of the above, update the environment so the changes will take effect:

root #env-update && source /etc/profile

Time and date

Time, date, and timezone can be set using the timedatectl utility. That will also allow users to set up synchronization without needing to rely on net-misc/ntp or other providers than systemd's own implementation.

To learn how to use timedatectl simply run:

root #timedatectl --help

Automatic module loading

Automatic module loading is configured in a different file, or rather directory of files. The configuration files are stored in /etc/modules-load.d. On boot every file with a list of modules will be loaded. The file format is a list of modules separated by newlines and can have any name as long as it ends with .conf. The module loading can be separated by program, service or whatever way that fits personal preference. An example virtualbox.conf is listed below:

FILE /etc/modules-load.d/virtualbox.confExample file for the virtualbox modules

Automatic mounting of partitions at boot

Systemd is capable of automatically mounting various partitions to standardized location via systemd-gpt-auto-generator. This makes it possible to boot and automatically mount essential partitions without an fstab and without a root= paramter on the kernel command line. To use this capability, first systemd must be included in the initramfs, this is the case by default for initramfs images generated with Dracut on systems with systemd installed. And second, each partition must have the correct Partition Type GUID. A list of the most important GUIDs can be found in the systemd-gpt-auto-generator manual, the full list can be found on wikipedia.

To list the current Partition Type GUID of your partitions:


systemd-gpt-auto-generator can auto-mount partitions at the following locations, note that the correct GUID depends on the systems CPU architecture:

  • / SD_GPT_ROOT_....
  • /boot/ SD_GPT_ESP if no /efi/ and no XBOOTLDR partition, otherwise SD_GPT_XBOOTLDR
  • /efi/ SD_GPT_ESP if /efi/ is present on the root, if not then ESP is at /boot/
  • /home/ SD_GPT_HOME
  • /srv/ SD_GPT_SRV
  • /usr/ SD_GPT_USR_....
  • /var/ SD_GPT_VAR
  • /var/tmp/ SD_GPT_TMP
  • Swap SD_GPT_SWAP

Below is an example of the most basic partition layout consisting of one EFI System Partition and one x86-64 root partition.

NAME        LABEL    PARTLABEL            PARTTYPE                             PARTTYPENAME                 MOUNTPOINT
├─nvme1n1p1 ESP      EFI System Partition c12a7328-f81f-11d2-ba4b-00a0c93ec93b EFI System                   /boot
└─nvme1n1p2 Gentoo   Gentoo               4f68bce3-e8cd-4db1-96e7-fbcaf984b709 Linux root (x86-64)          /

The PARTTYPE for an EFI System Partition is c12a7328-f81f-11d2-ba4b-00a0c93ec93b, it will be mounted at either /efi/ or /boot/ depending on which of these mount points is available and on if there is also an Extended Boot Loader Partition (PARTTYPE=bc13c2ff-59e6-4262-a352-b275fd6f7172) present on this disk. The PARTTYPE for an x86-64 root parition is 4f68bce3-e8cd-4db1-96e7-fbcaf984b709.

If the Partition Type GUID is not correct it can be changed without data loss using a partitioning tool such as fdisk. Note that the system must be offline to change the patition types! A system rescue image, or secondary operating system, must be used to complete the following steps.

Open the disk with the to be changed partition types in fdisk, in this exameple /dev/nvme1n1 is used:

root #fdisk /dev/nvme1n1
Welcome to fdisk (util-linux 2.39.3).
Changes will remain in memory only, until you decide to write them.
Be careful before using the write command.
Command (m for help):

List the current partition layout with the p command:

Command (m for help): p
Disk /dev/nvme1n1: 1.82 TiB, 2000398934016 bytes, 3907029168 sectors
Disk model: Samsung SSD 970 EVO Plus 2TB
Units: sectors of 1 * 512 = 512 bytes
Sector size (logical/physical): 512 bytes / 512 bytes
I/O size (minimum/optimal): 512 bytes / 512 bytes
Disklabel type: gpt
Disk identifier: B25D5B33-4A10-F940-826C-3CB24ADC7D86
Device           Start        End    Sectors  Size Type
/dev/nvme1n1p1    2048    1052671    1050624  513M EFI System
/dev/nvme1n1p2 1052672 3907028991 3905976320  1.8T Linux root (x86-64)

Change the Partition Type GUID of any partition with the t command, followed by the number of the partition to be changed, and finally the alias for the desired partition type:

Command (m for help): t
Partition number (1,2, default 2): 2
Partition type or alias (type L to list all): L
Partition type or alias (type L to list all): 23
Changed type of partition 'Linux root (x86-64)' to 'Linux root (x86-64)'.

Repeat the above steps for any additional partitions of which the Partition Type GUID should be changed. Once completed, save the changes with the w command:

Command (m for help): w
systemd-gpt-auto-generator will only auto-mount partitions that reside on the same disk as the EFI System Partition that the system is being booted from.
Some tools may become confused if there is no root= parameter on the kernel command line at all. To placate such tools add root=/dev/gpt-auto-root to the kernel command line. This trick is also usefull if a swapfile on the root partition is used instead of a swap partition for hibernation, i.e. one may specify the resume target on the kernel command line as resume=/dev/gpt-auto-root resume_offset=xxxxxxxxx.


systemd is compatible with various network management tools.


See the systemd/systemd-networkd article for details on setting up a wired network on systemd systems.


See the systemd/systemd-resolved article for details on setting up address name resolution (DNS) on systemd systems.


NetworkManager is often used to configure network settings. For that purpose, simply run the following command when using a graphical desktop:

root #nm-connection-editor

If that is not the case and the network needs to be configured from console, give nmcli a try, or follow a guided configuration process through nmtui:

root #nmtui

nmtui is a curses frontend that will guide the user in the process while running in console mode.

For more details see the dedicated article.

Handling of log files

systemd has its own way of handling log files without needing to rely on an external log system (such as app-admin/syslog-ng or app-admin/rsyslog).

If desired, the logging service be configured to pass log messages to external logging utilities such as sysklog or syslog-ng. See man journald.conf to learn how to configure the systemd-journald service to suit situational needs.

systemd's integrated logging service writes log messages in a secure, binary format. The logs are read by using the journalctl command, which is a separate executable from the systemd-journald logging service.


Some common journalctl options:

Command-line options for journalctl Result
journalctl without options Show all log entries, starting with earliest.
-b, --boot Show all log entries from the current boot.
-r, --reverse Show the newest log entries first (reverse chronological order).
-f, --follow Show the last few entries and display new log entries as they're being produced. This is similar to running tail -f in text logging utilities.
-p, --priority= Specify (minimum) priority to display messages, with a choice from: "emerg" (0), "alert" (1), "crit" (2), "err" (3), "warning" (4), "notice" (5), "info" (6), "debug" (7).
-S, --since=, -U, --until= Restrict entries by time. Accepts the format "YYYY-MM-DD hh:mm:ss" or the strings "yesterday", "today" and "tomorrow".
-n, --lines= Restrict to a number of entries.
-k, --dmesg Restrict to kernel messages.
-u, --unit= Restrict to a certain systemd unit.
--system View system service and kernel logs. By default, this is only possible as the root user. See man journalctl for how to grant standard users the ability to read the system journal.

For more information and many more options, look at man journalctl.

/tmp is now in tmpfs

Unless some other filesystem is explicitly mounted to /tmp in /etc/fstab, systemd will mount /tmp as tmpfs. That means it will be emptied on every boot and its size will be limited to 50% of the system's RAM size. To know why this is the desired behavior and how to modify it, take a look at API File Systems.

Configure verbosity of boot process

When migrating to systemd users usually notice differences regarding verbosity of boot process:

  • The kernel command-line option quiet not only influences the kernel output, but also that of systemd itself. Then, while setting up systemd for the machine, drop the option to see any errors could arise more easily. After that, add it back to get a quiet (and faster) boot.
  • Even passing the quiet kernel command-line option, systemd can still be configured to show its status by also passing systemd.show_status=1.
  • When not using the quiet kernel command-line option, some messages might be overwriting consoles. This could be caused by the kernel configuration (see man 5 proc and look for /proc/sys/kernel/printk). To tweak it pass the loglevel=5 kernel command-line parameter (and update the value according to preference, for instance set a lower value like 1).


Converting traditional home directories to systemd homed

See the systemd-homed subarticle.


At some point the system will need to be rebooted in order to get systemd running (in system mode). Be sure to read all of this document to ensure systemd is configured as completely as possible before rebooting. Note that journalctl works with systemd not running, but that systemctl will not do anything useful without systemd running. Complete the service configuration (enabling and starting of services) after logging in to the system running systemd.

Preset services

Most services are disabled when systemd is first installed. A "preset" file is provided, and may be used to enable a reasonable set of default services.

root #systemctl preset-all

OpenRC services

Although systemd originally intended to support running old init.d scripts, that support is not suited well for a dependency-based RC like OpenRC and thus is completely disabled on Gentoo. OpenRC provides additional measures to ensure that init.d scripts can't be run when OpenRC was not used to boot the system (otherwise the results would be unpredictable).

Listing available services

All available service units can be listed using the list-units argument of systemctl:

root #systemctl list-units
UNIT                               LOAD   ACTIVE SUB       DESCRIPTION
boot.automount                     loaded active waiting   EFI System Partition Automount
proc-sys-fs-binfmt_misc.automount  loaded active waiting   Arbitrary Executable File Formats File System Automount Point

The following file suffixes are of interest:

Suffix Description
.service Plain service files (e.g. ones just running a daemon directly).
.socket Socket listeners (much like inetd).
.path Filesystem triggers for services (running services when files change, etc.).

Alternatively the systemctl tool can be used to list all services (including implicit ones):

root #systemctl --all --full

And finally check for services that failed to start:

root #systemctl --failed

Enabling, disabling, starting, and stopping services

The usual way of enabling a service is using the following command:

root #systemctl enable foo.service

Services can be disabled likewise:

root #systemctl disable foo.service

These commands enable services using their default name in default target (both specified in "Install" section of the service file). However, sometimes services either don't provide that information or users prefer to have another name/target.

Note that these commands only enable or disable the service to be started on a next boot; to start the service right now, use:

root #systemctl start foo.service

Services can be stopped likewise:

root #systemctl stop foo.service

Services implementing ExecReload= can be commanded to reload their configuration without restarting itself:

root #systemctl reload foo.service

Installing custom unit files

Custom unit files can be placed in /etc/systemd/system, where they will be recognized after running systemctl daemon-reload:

root #systemctl daemon-reload

The /lib/systemd/system directory is reserved for service files installed by the package manager.

Customizing unit files

When only minor changes or overrides to a unit are needed, there's no need to create a full copy of the original unit file in /etc/systemd/system/ or /lib/systemd/system/. Overriding settings in a package management provided unit can be achieved by drop-in files in a *.d directory named after the original unit (e.g. apache2.service.d) in /etc/systemd/system/.

Both the drop-in directory and config file can be created using the systemctl edit utility or manually.

The editing utility can be invoked as:

root #systemctl edit apache2.service
FILE /etc/systemd/system/apache2.service.d/mem-limit.confExample of adding/overriding settings in a service file

A reload of systemd is needed to inform it of the changes:

root #systemctl daemon-reload

Then the service needs to be restarted to apply the changes:

root #systemctl restart apache2

Verify that the changed property was applied to the service:

root #systemctl show --property=MemoryLimit apache2

Enabling a service under a custom name

When the name provided by Alias= in the unit's [Install] section does not meet the expectations and providing a permanent new value for this through a customization is not desired, a symlink can be created manually in /etc/systemd/system/*.wants/. The name of the *.wants directory can either specify a target or another service which will depend on the new one.

For example, to install mysqld.service as db.service in the

root #ln -s /lib/systemd/system/mysqld.service /etc/systemd/system/

To disable the service, just remove the symlink:

root #unlink /etc/systemd/system/

Native services

Some of Gentoo packages already install systemd unit files. For these services, it is enough to enable them. A quick summary of packages installing unit files can be seen on systemd eclass users list.

The following table lists systemd services matching OpenRC ones:

Service migration chart
Gentoo package OpenRC service systemd unit Notes
sys-apps/openrc bootmisc systemd-tmpfiles-setup.service always enabled, uses tmpfiles.d
consolefont systemd-vconsole-setup.service always enabled, uses vconsole.conf
fsck fsck*.service pulled in implicitly by mounts See note bug #373219
hostname (builtin) /etc/hostname
hwclock See note always enabled as part of systemd (i.e. it is baked in and it is not a unit)
keymaps systemd-vconsole-setup.service always enabled, uses vconsole.conf
localmount actual units are created implicitly from /etc/fstab
modules systemd-modules-load.service always enabled, uses /etc/modules-load.d/*.conf
procfs (builtin)
root remount-rootfs.service
savecache n/a OpenRC internals
swap actual units are created implicitly from /etc/fstab
sysctl systemd-sysctl.service sysctl.conf and sysctl.d/
sysfs (builtin)
termencoding systemd-vconsole-setup.service always enabled, uses vconsole.conf
urandom systemd-random-seed-load.service
app-admin/rsyslog rsyslog rsyslog.service
app-admin/syslog-ng syslog-ng syslog-ng.service
media-sound/alsa-utils alsasound alsa-store.service (enabled by default)
alsa-restore.socket (enabled by default)
net-misc/dhcpcd dhcpcd dhcpcd.service
net-misc/netifrc net.* net@.service systemd wrapper for net.* scripts (comes with net-misc/netifrc)
netctl@.service net-misc/netctl is originally an Arch Linux tool.
NetworkManager.service For <networkmanager- : enable NetworkManager-dispatcher.service for dispatcher.d scripts to work.
Enable NetworkManager-wait-online.service to detect that the system has a working internet connection.
Disable all other managers (e.g., wicd, dhcpcd) and wpa_supplicant.
dhcpcd.service Provided by net-misc/dhcpcd
systemd.networkd.service Part of systemd
net-misc/openntpd ntpd ntpd.service
net-misc/openssh sshd sshd.service runs sshd as a daemon
sshd.socket runs sshd on a inetd-like basis (for each incoming connection)
net-wireless/wpa_supplicant wpa-supplicant wpa_supplicant.service D-Bus controlled daemon (e.g. for NetworkManager)
wpa_supplicant@.service interface-specific wpa_supplicant (used like wpa_supplicant@wlan0.service)
net-print/cups cupsd cups.service classic on-boot start up service
cups.socket socket and path activation (cups only started on-demand)
net-wireless/bluez bluetooth bluetooth.service
sys-apps/dbus dbus dbus.service
sys-apps/irqbalance irqbalance irqbalance.service supports daemon mode only
sys-apps/microcode-ctl microcode_ctl Configure microcode as a module to let it load the microcode itself. Go to "Processor type and features" -> "CPU microcode loading support" and remember to add the right option based on the system having an Intel or AMD processor.
sys-fs/udev udev udev.service
udev-mount (builtin) /dev is mounted as tmpfs
udev-postmount udev-trigger.service
sys-power/acpid acpid acpid.service Most of its functionality is done by systemd itself, so consider disabling this
x11-apps/xdm (xdm) xdm.service OpenRC uses common xdm init.d installed by x11-base/xorg-server. With systemd the corresponding unit file for each DM (gdm.service, kdm.service...) needs to be enabled.
net-firewall/iptables iptables iptables-store.service

User services

It is possible to manage services as a per-user systemd instance. This allows users to setup their own services or timers.

User units can be located at multiple places. Users are allowed to place them to $XDG_CONFIG_HOME/systemd/user/. Installed packages place them to /usr/lib/systemd/user/.

User services use --user systemctl option. For example to start a mpd user service:

user $systemctl --user start mpd

Timer services

Since version 197 systemd supports timers, making cron unnecessary on a systemd system. Since version 212 persistent services are supported, replacing even anacron. Persistent timers are run at the next opportunity if the system was powered down when the timer was scheduled to run.

The following is an example on how to make a simple timer that runs in the context of a user. It will even run if the user is not logged in. Every timed service needs a timer and a service unit file that is activated by the timer as follows:

FILE ~/.config/systemd/user/backup-work.timerExample of a timer running every working day
Description=daily backup work
OnCalendar=Mon-Fri *-*-* 11:30:00
FILE ~/.config/systemd/user/backup-work.serviceExample of a service triggering backup
Description=daily backup work

These unit files can be created either manually or using the systemctl edit utility:

user $systemctl edit --force --full --user backup-work.timer

When creating the unit files manually, the files are to be placed in the ~/.config/systemd/user directory. It may need to be created for the relevant user:

user $mkdir -p ~/.config/systemd/user

To have a timer run while the user is not logged in, be sure to enable lingering sessions:

user $loginctl enable-linger <username>

First, tell systemd to rescan the service files:

user $systemctl --user daemon-reload

As a user, it is possible to trigger the backup manually by running the following command:

user $systemctl --user start backup-work.service

Start and stop the timer manually as follows:

user $systemctl --user start backup-work.timer
user $systemctl --user stop backup-work.timer

Finally, to activate the timer at every system start, run:

user $systemctl --user enable backup-work.timer

To check the last results of running the service:

user $systemctl --user list-timers

Emailing failures

If a timed service runs and fails an e-mail can be send out to inform the user or administrator. This is possible with the "OnFailure" stanza which specifies what should happen if a service fails. A failure is detected by a non-zero return code of the invoked script.

For that change the script as follows:

FILE ~/.config/systemd/user/backup-work.serviceExample of a service triggering backup
Description=daily backup work

This requires to have the service failure-email@.service installed, which can be found in kylemanna's systemd-utils repository.

Replacing cron

The above timer and service files can also be added to /lib/systemd/system to make them available system-wide. The install section should then say to enable the service at system start.

However, cron also runs the scripts in /etc/cron.daily and other locations. Several packages place scripts there that they expect to be run daily. This behavior can be emulated with systemd by installing sys-process/systemd-cron. Then activate the new cron replacement with the following commands:

root #systemctl enable
root #systemctl start


Slow shutdowns or reboot times due to running services

Occasionally a systemd system or user service will cause the system to greatly delay poweroff/shutdown or reboot operation due to systemd default wait times for the operation blocking service to time out.
To greatly speed up this operation, the default timeout values can be reduced at the expense of the service (potentially) not cleanly finishing a task. In order to be effective, both of the following configuration changes must be put into effect to shorten the default timeout system and user services.
FILE /etc/systemd/system.conf.d/system.confReduce default timeout to 10s for hanging system services
FILE ~/.config/systemd/user.confReduce default timeout to 10s for hanging user services

/dev/kmsg buffer overrun, some messages lost

When booting the system displays an infinite loop of /dev/kmsg buffer overrun, some messages lost. The login screen to console never appears since the system never gets to that point in the boot process.
Most of the time this issue is caused when the CONFIG_POWER_SUPPLY_DEBUG option is enabled in the kernel. The current workaround is to disable this option in the kernel, then recompile, install, and boot the new kernel. The solution can also be found in this thread on the Gentoo forums. According to one user one the forum, this issue was also seen when using I2C EEPROM on an embedded system[2]. The solution in this case was to disable the CONFIG_I2C_DEBUG_CORE kernel option.

Graphical sessions opened in random places

By default systemd only launches a getty process when it's going to be used. This causes some display managers (like GDM) to use the remaining TTYs for opening graphical sessions on demand, which can result in having consoles and graphical sessions placed randomly depending on the order they were used.

To stick with a more "classical" behavior (i.e, consoles placed from tty1 to tty6 and graphical sessions using the remaining TTYs) force it to always launch getty on those:

root #systemctl enable getty@tty{2,3,4,5,6}.service


When switching from OpenRC to systemd and LVM is needed to properly mount the system volumes, activate the LVM service:

root #systemctl enable lvm2-monitor.service

While it might not be needed for activation of the root volume (if LVM is integrated into the initramfs) it might not work for other LVM volumes, unless the service is activated.



KERNEL Enable systemd-bootchart support
File systems  --->
	Pseudo filesystems --->
	[*] /proc file system support
Kernel hacking  --->
	[*] Kernel debugging
	[*] Collect scheduler debugging info
	[*] Collect scheduler statistics

Next, enable systemd-bootchart.service:

root #systemctl enable systemd-bootchart

The result of the changes will produce a bootchart report in SVG format located in /run/log/ after each boot. It can be viewed using a modern web browser.

As an alternative to systemd-bootchart the starting of services can be visualized with:

root #systemd-analyze plot > plot.svg

syslog-ng source for systemd

There is no need to add unix-dgram('/dev/log'); to the /etc/syslog-ng/syslog-ng.conf config file. It will cause syslog-ng to fail (at least on version syslog-ng-3.7.2). Update the source src { ...; }; line mentioned in the syslog-ng article as follows:

FILE /etc/syslog-ng/syslog-ng.conf
# default config for openrc
#source src { system(); internal(); };
# systemd
source src { systemd-journal(); internal(); };

sys-fs/cryptsetup configuration

systemd does not seem to respect /etc/conf.d/dmcrypt (see bug #429966) so it needs to be configured through the /etc/crypttab file:

FILE /etc/crypttabConfiguration file for encrypted block devices
crypt-home UUID=c25dd0f3-ecdd-420e-99a8-0ff2eaf3f391 -

Make sure to enable the cryptsetup USE flag for sys-apps/systemd. It will install /lib/systemd/system-generators/systemd-cryptsetup-generator that will automatically create a service (cryptsetup@crypt-home.service for above example) for each entry on boot.

Check for units that failed to start

Check for units that failed to start with:

root #systemctl --failed

Enable debug mode

To get more informations set the following in /etc/systemd/system.conf:

FILE /etc/systemd/system.conf

Or enable the debug-shell, that opens a terminal at tty9. This helps to debug services during the boot process.

root #systemctl enable debug-shell.service

e4rat usage

Please remember to edit /etc/e4rat.conf setting 'init' to /lib/systemd/systemd, otherwise it will keep booting OpenRC.

GRSecurity hardening

With grsecurity enabled, systemd-networkd might log the following error:

CODE systemd-networkd error
could not find udev device: Permission denied

The error raises due to systemd-networkd working under a non-root user with grsecurity refusing access to the complete /sys structure for such users. To disable this option, disable the CONFIG_GRKERNSEC_SYSFS_RESTRICT kernel option.

logind may also have subtle permission issues with CONFIG_GRKERNSEC_PROC active, see bug #472098.

shutdown -rF does not force fsck

The systemd-fsck service is responsible of running fsck when needed. It doesn't honor shutdown's -rF option, but instead honors the following kernel boot parameters.

Boot parameter Supported options Description
fsck.mode auto
Controls the mode of operation. The default is auto, and ensures that file system checks are done when the file system checker deems them necessary. force unconditionally results in full file system checks. skip skips any file system checks. preen
Controls the mode of operation. The default is preen, and will automatically repair problems that can be safely fixed. yes will answer yes to all questions by fsck and no will answer no to all questions.

Optional systemd binaries

Many optional systemd binaries can be built by setting certain use flags. An incomplete mapping of USE flag to binary is below.

USE flag Additional binary built
curl /lib/systemd/systemd-journal-upload
http /lib/systemd/systemd-journal-gatewayd

See also

External resources