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How To Tell If Your Linux Server Uses xinetd OR inetd sever

Q. How to tell if my Linux server is using xinetd or inetd service?

A. inetd is also known as super-server daemon and it runs on many Unix / Linux systems that manages Internet service such as ftp or pop3 or telnet.

xinetd (eXtended InterNET Daemon) is also an open-source daemon which runs on many Unix / Linux systems and manages Internet-based services such as ftp or telnet.

You can use netstat or ps command to find out if Linux / UNIX server using xinetd or inetd server:
# ps aux | egrep '[xi]netd'
OR
# netstat -tulpn | grep LISTEN | egrep '[xi]netd'
Sample output:

tcp        0      0 0.0.0.0:23              0.0.0.0:*               LISTEN     8552/inetd

OR

tcp        0      0 0.0.0.0:904                 0.0.0.0:*                   LISTEN      5271/xinetd

Usually,

  • RHEL / CentOS / Fedora Linux runs xinetd.
  • *BSD / Debian / Ubuntu Linux / Mac OS X runs inetd.
  • Default inetd configuration file location /etc/inetd.conf
  • Default xinetd configuration file location /etc/xinetd.conf
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{ 5 comments… add one }

  • Stanislav Lechev [AngelFire] March 11, 2008, 7:10 am

    actualy you dont have to type:
    grep ‘[xi]netd’

    this one should be more accurate:
    grep ‘[x]inetd’

  • Stanislav Lechev [AngelFire] March 11, 2008, 7:12 am

    ohh.. and when you use -l (LISTEN) option of netstat … you dont have to grep for LISTEN

  • James Gibbons April 26, 2012, 7:29 pm

    Also you can look for the /etc/inetd.conf file or /etc/xinetd.d subdirectory, and whichever directory you find tells you which one you are using.

  • Mohammad November 25, 2012, 6:50 pm

    What is the difference between initd and xinetd ?

  • Arlen May 27, 2015, 3:36 pm

    Actually, since ‘inetd’ is included in ‘xinetd’ wouldn’t

    grep ‘inetd’

    be the simplest approach? It would pull either string.

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