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Warning: Arch Linux only has official support for systemd. When using OpenRC, please mention so in support requests.

OpenRC is a service manager maintained by the Gentoo developers. OpenRC is dependency based and works with the system provided init program, normally SysVinit.


Tango-inaccurate.pngThe factual accuracy of this article or section is disputed.Tango-inaccurate.png

Reason: openrc-sysvinitAUR removes systemd-sysvcompat (Discuss in Talk:OpenRC#)

OpenRC and accompanying packages are available in the AUR. For details on init components, see Init.

Install either the openrcAUR or openrc-gitAUR package. openrc-sysvinitAUR or busybox are used as the init process. Service files are available from the openrc-arch-services-gitAUR package.

To maintain compability with initscripts-forkAUR, configuration files are installed to /etc/openrc/. The sysvinit init binary is installed to /usr/bin/init-openrc for compability with systemd-sysvcompat or similar packages.


For booting with OpenRC add init=/usr/bin/init-openrc to the kernel parameters. To switch back to systemd, remove the parameter again.

The /etc/openrc/conf.d directory, and the /etc/openrc/rc.d file is used for configuration.


For general information on configuring OpenRC, see:

For instructions when migrating from systemd, see Init#Configuration.


OpenRC services are enabled by issuing rc-update add service_name runlevel as root. It is recommended to at least enable the following services:

Service name Runlevel Description
udev sysinit Device hot-plugging
alsa default ALSA state
acpid default ACPI events
dbus default Messaging bus
dcron default Scheduling
syslog-ng default System logs

See also Native services and Daemons.


The network is configured through newnet. [1] Modify the /etc/openrc/conf.d/network file; both the ip (iproute2) and the ifconfig (net-tools) commands are supported. Below is an example configuration using ip.

ifup_eth0="ip link set \$int mtu 1500"

The network service is added to the boot runlevel by default, so no further action is required. See Network configuration for general networking information.

Note: You may also use NetworkManager, dhcpcd or netcfgAUR by enabling the respective services. netcfg mimics the netctl behaviour (see [2] if you want to enable profiles connection on booting - requires wpa_actiond). See netcfg features.

Boot logs

To enable boot logging, uncomment the rc_logger="YES" line in /etc/openrc/rc.conf. When enabled, boot logs are stored in /var/log/rc.log.


OpenRC sets the hostname from /etc/openrc/conf.d/hostname. The file looks as follows:

# Set to the hostname of this machine

Kernel modules

OpenRC uses /etc/openrc/conf.d/modules instead of /etc/modules-load.d. For example:

# You should consult your kernel documentation and configuration
# for a list of modules and their options.

modules="vboxdrv acpi_cpufreq"


Keyboard layout can be configured via /etc/openrc/conf.d/keymaps and /etc/openrc/conf.d/consolefont. You can also configure the settings through the /etc/locale.conf file, which is sourced via /etc/profile.d/

See [3] and Locale for details.


This section draws a parallel between systemd and other init systems.

You can omit the .service and .target extensions, especially if temporarily editing the kernel parameters.

systemd SysVinit OpenRC Description
systemctl list-units rc.d list rc-status List running services status
systemctl --failed rc-status --crashed Check failed services
systemctl --all rc-update -v show Display all available services.
systemctl (start, stop, restart, status) daemon.service rc.d (start, stop, restart) daemon rc-service (start, stop, restart, status) daemon Change service state.
systemctl (enable, disable) daemon.service chkconfig daemon (on, off) rc-update (add, del) daemon Turn service on or off.
systemctl daemon-reload chkconfig daemon --add Create or modify configuration.

Tips and tricks

Quiet booting

To hide boot messages from OpenRC, you can edit /etc/inittab and add --quiet to every openrc command. For further information check with $ openrc -h.


Error while unmounting /tmp

When shutting the system down, you might get an error message such as

* Unmounting /tmp ... 
* in use but fuser finds nothing [ !! ]

This can be fixed by adding


to /etc/openrc/conf.d/localmount

Note: This problem occurs only if your tmp is mounted as a tmpfs.

Disabling IPv6 does not work

One option is to add:

# Disable ipv6
net.ipv6.conf.all.disable_ipv6 = 1

in a file with a .conf extension under /etc/openrc/sysctl.d

During shutdown remounting root as read-only fails

If the above happens, edit the /etc/openrc/init.d/mount-ro file and put:

telinit u

after the following line:

# Flush all pending disk writes now
sync; sync

/etc/sysctl.conf not found

By default, sysctl --system is called to load the sysctl configuration. [4] This includes the /etc/sysctl.conf file, which was removed from Arch. [5]

To prevent a missing file error, create the file:

# touch /etc/sysctl.conf

opentmpfiles-setup failed to start

On booting openrc you may see lines like these :

* Setting up tmpfiles.d entries ...
chattr: Operation not supported while setting flags on /var/log/journal
chattr: No such file or directory while trying to stat /var/log/journal/%m
chattr: Operation not supported while setting flags on /var/log/journal/remote
[ !! ]
ERROR: opentmpfiles-setup failed to start

This is caused by /usr/lib/tmpfiles.d/journal-nocow.conf using options that are only valid if journal is on a btrfs filesystem.

See for details

A workaround is to create an empty /etc/tmpfiles.d/journal-nocow.conf to override the settings.

Using OpenRC with a desktop environment

If using OpenRC with a desktop environment, ConsoleKit may help. Install the service to /etc/openrc/init.d, and enable it:

# rc-update add consolekit default

See ConsoleKit for more information.

Begin with OpenRC 0.28 SysVinit is replaced with openrc-init, shutdown is replaced with openrc-shutdown, by using consolekit the system may hang up when shuting down from desktop session. So use elogind-openrcAUR instead. Enable it with:

# rc-update add elogind default

Also you need to replace polkit-consolekit with polkit-elogindAUR, or the system will alarm "not authorized to perform operation" when mounting usb device, and can't reboot or shutdown from the desktop session.

See also