start-stop-daemon [option...] command

       start-stop-daemon  is  used  to control the creation and termination of
       system-level  processes.   Using   one   of   the   matching   options,
       start-stop-daemon  can  be  configured  to find existing instances of a
       running process.

       Note: unless --pidfile is specified, start-stop-daemon behaves  similar
       to  killall(1).   start-stop-daemon will scan the process table looking
       for any processes which match the process name,  uid,  and/or  gid  (if
       specified). Any matching process will prevent --start from starting the
       daemon. All matching processes will be sent the TERM signal (or the one
       specified  via --signal or --retry) if --stop is specified. For daemons
       which have long-lived children which need to live through a --stop, you
       must specify a pidfile.

       -S, --start [--] arguments
              Check  for  the  existence  of  a  specified process.  If such a
              process exists, start-stop-daemon does nothing, and  exits  with
              error  status 1 (0 if --oknodo is specified).  If such a process
              does not exist, it starts an instance,  using  either  the  exe-
              cutable specified by --exec or, if specified, by --startas.  Any
              arguments given after -- on the command line are passed  unmodi-
              fied to the program being started.

       -K, --stop
              Checks  for  the  existence  of  a specified process.  If such a
              process exists, start-stop-daemon sends it the signal  specified
              by  --signal,  and exits with error status 0.  If such a process
              does not exist, start-stop-daemon exits with error status  1  (0
              if  --oknodo  is  specified).  If  --retry  is  specified,  then
              start-stop-daemon will check that the  process(es)  have  termi-

       -T, --status
              Check  for  the existence of a specified process, and returns an
              exit status code, according to the LSB Init Script Actions.

       -H, --help
              Show usage information and exit.

       -V, --version
              Show the program version and exit.

       -p, --pidfile pid-file
              Check whether a process has created the file pid-file.

       -x, --exec executable
              Check for  processes  that  are  instances  of  this  executable
              Change to group or gid when starting the process.

       -s, --signal signal
              With  --stop,  specifies  the  signal to send to processes being
              stopped (default TERM).

       -R, --retry timeout|schedule
              With  --stop,  specifies  that  start-stop-daemon  is  to  check
              whether  the  process(es)  do  finish.  It will check repeatedly
              whether any matching processes are running, until none  are.  If
              the  processes  do  not exit it will then take further action as
              determined by the schedule.

              If timeout is specified instead of schedule, then  the  schedule
              signal/timeout/KILL/timeout  is used, where signal is the signal
              specified with --signal.

              schedule is a list of at least two items  separated  by  slashes
              (/);  each  item  may be -signal-number or [-]signal-name, which
              means to send that signal, or timeout, which means to wait  that
              many  seconds  for processes to exit, or forever, which means to
              repeat the rest of the schedule forever if necessary.

              If the end of the schedule is reached and forever is not  speci-
              fied,  then  start-stop-daemon  exits with error status 2.  If a
              schedule is specified, then any signal specified  with  --signal
              is ignored.

       -a, --startas pathname
              With  --start,  start the process specified by pathname.  If not
              specified, defaults to the argument given to --exec.

       -t, --test
              Print actions that would be taken  and  set  appropriate  return
              value, but take no action.

       -o, --oknodo
              Return  exit  status 0 instead of 1 if no actions are (would be)

       -q, --quiet
              Do not print informational messages;  only  display  error  mes-

       -c, --chuid username|uid[:group|gid]
              Change to this username/uid before starting the process. You can
              also specify a group by appending a :, then the group or gid  in
              the  same way as you would for the `chown' command (user:group).
              If a user is specified without a group, the primary GID for that
              user  is used.  When using this option you must realize that the
              primary and supplemental groups are set as  well,  even  if  the
              --group  option is not specified. The --group option is only for
              groups that the user isn't normally a member of (like adding per
              process group membership for generic users like nobody).
              Typically  used  with  programs  that don't detach on their own.
              This option will force start-stop-daemon to fork before starting
              the  process,  and  force  it  into  the  background.   WARNING:
              start-stop-daemon cannot check the exit status  if  the  process
              fails  to  execute for any reason. This is a last resort, and is
              only meant for programs that either make  no  sense  forking  on
              their  own,  or where it's not feasible to add the code for them
              to do this themselves.

       -N, --nicelevel int
              This alters the priority of the process before starting it.

       -P, --procsched policy:priority
              This alters the process scheduler policy  and  priority  of  the
              process before starting it. The priority can be optionally spec-
              ified by appending a : followed by the value. The default prior-
              ity  is 0. The currently supported policy values are other, fifo
              and rr.

       -I, --iosched class:priority
              This alters the IO scheduler class and priority of  the  process
              before  starting it. The priority can be optionally specified by
              appending a : followed by the value. The default priority is  4,
              unless  class  is idle, then priority will always be 7. The cur-
              rently supported values for  class  are  idle,  best-effort  and

       -k, --umask mask
              This sets the umask of the process before starting it.

       -m, --make-pidfile
              Used  when  starting  a program that does not create its own pid
              file. This option will make start-stop-daemon  create  the  file
              referenced  with --pidfile and place the pid into it just before
              executing the process. Note, the file will not be  removed  when
              stopping  the  program.   NOTE: This feature may not work in all
              cases. Most notably when the program being executed  forks  from
              its  main  process.  Because  of this, it is usually only useful
              when combined with the --background option.

       -v, --verbose
              Print verbose informational messages.

       0      The requested action was performed. If --oknodo  was  specified,
              it's also possible that nothing had to be done.  This can happen
              when --start was specified and a matching  process  was  already
              running, or when --stop was specified and there were no matching

       1      If --oknodo was not specified and nothing was done.

       2      If --stop and --retry were specified, but the end of the  sched-
              ule was reached and the processes were still running.

       4      Unable to determine program status.

       Start the food daemon, unless one is already running (a  process  named
       food, running as user food, with pid in

              start-stop-daemon --start --oknodo --user food --name food --pidfile /var/run/ --startas /usr/sbin/food --chuid food -- --daemon

       Send SIGTERM to food and wait up to 5 seconds for it to stop:

              start-stop-daemon --stop --oknodo --user food --name food --pidfile /var/run/ --retry 5

       Demonstration of a custom schedule for stopping food:

              start-stop-daemon --stop --oknodo --user food --name food --pidfile /var/run/ --retry=TERM/30/KILL/5

       Marek Michalkiewicz <> based on a pre-
       vious version by Ian Jackson <>.

       Manual page by Klee Dienes <>, partially reformatted by Ian

Debian Project                    2011-07-04              start-stop-daemon(8)
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