The after.local.service fails to start with exec format error

This document (7017128) is provided subject to the disclaimer at the end of this document.


SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 12
SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 12 Service Pack 1 (SLES 12 SP1)


After enabling the after.local.service in SLE12, the service does not start at boot or after boot.
ls-boot:~ # systemctl status after.local
   Loaded: loaded (/etc/init.d/after.local)
   Active: failed (Result: exit-code) since Wed 2016-01-06 01:06:07 MST; 7h ago
  Process: 638 ExecStart=/etc/init.d/after.local start (code=exited, status=203/EXEC)

Jan 06 01:06:07 ls-boot systemd[1]: Failed to start after.local.service.
A restart of the service results in the following error:
ls-boot:~ # systemctl restart after.local
Job for after.local.service failed. See "systemctl status after.local.service" and "journalctl -xn" for details.
If you run journalctl and search for after.local, you see the following error:
ls-boot systemd[675]: Failed at step EXEC spawning /etc/init.d/after.local: Exec format error
The content of /etc/init.d/after.local is:
ls-boot:~ # cat /etc/init.d/after.local 
touch /var/log/test.log


Add a hashpling to the beginning of /etc/init.d/after.local.

Change /etc/init.d/after.local from this:
ls-boot:~ # cat /etc/init.d/after.local 
touch /var/log/test.log
to this:
ls-boot:~ # cat /etc/init.d/after.local 
touch /var/log/test.log
Reboot the server or restart the systemd processes as follows:
ls-boot:~ # systemctl daemon-reload
ls-boot:~ # systemctl restart after.local
ls-boot:~ # systemctl status after.local
   Loaded: loaded (/etc/init.d/after.local)
   Active: active (exited) since Wed 2016-01-06 09:32:19 MST; 11s ago
  Process: 2594 ExecStart=/etc/init.d/after.local start (code=exited, status=0/SUCCESS)

ls-boot:~ # ls -l /var/log/test.log
-rw-r--r-- 1 root root 0 Jan  6 09:32 /var/log/test.log


The /etc/init.d/after.local file was missing the hashpling at the beginning of the file. A hashpling is required for any systemd service script.


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  • Document ID:7017128
  • Creation Date: 06-Jan-2016
  • Modified Date:03-Mar-2020
    • SUSE Linux Enterprise Server

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