[svlug] Cron not working

Bill Ward bill at wards.net
Wed Aug 5 10:13:01 PDT 2009

I think the preferred way to set up cron jobs in Ubuntu is not to use
crontab files, but instead to put the job in the 'cron.daily' folder.

Ubuntu, more than most distros, has little compunction about
discarding traditional Unixy ways of doing things if someone has an
idea that seems like a good one.  The idea behind anacron is that most
cron jobs don't really need to be done at set times, so long as they
get done once a day (or however often) and since a personal
workstation or laptop is often powered down or booted into another OS
it might not be online at the time it is supposed to be run.

On Wed, Aug 5, 2009 at 10:04 AM, David Rosenstrauch<darose at darose.net> wrote:
> Try doing this instead to figure out whether the problem is the command
> or the cron task not firing:
> 1       5       *       *       *       echo testing
> Any output from a cron job is supposed to get emailed to you, and since
> I don't think the echo command could possibly fail, you should get a
> "testing" email sent to you if the cron task runs successfully.  If you
> do, then the problem is the command line syntax.  If you donn't, then
> there's something weird going on that's causing the cron task not to run.
> HTH,
> DR
> On 08/05/2009 12:47 PM, Skip Evans wrote:
>> Looks like from this just cron, but it is a default pretty new
>> Ubuntu 9.04 install.
>> root at quad-core-1:/etc# ps waux | grep cron
>> root      7734  0.0  0.0   3480  1036 ?        Ss   08:56
>> 0:00 /usr/sbin/cron
>> root     15208  0.0  0.0   3336   788 pts/2    R+   11:44
>> 0:00 grep cron
>> root at quad-core-1:/etc#
>> I've been reading pages on cron, but I've found nothing why
>> this particular job shouldn't run, and it does not show up in
>> syslog, while the jobs on /etc/crontab do.
>> Here's the entry
>> root at quad-core-1:/etc# crontab -l
>> # m   h       dom     mon     dow     command
>> 1     5       *       *       *       /bin/cp /mnt/BSP_usr/backup/* /usr/backup/
>> root at quad-core-1:/etc#
>> As I said, I can cut and paste the command from the listing
>> onto the command line and it runs fine.
>> Skip
>> Bill Ward wrote:
>>> Are you running cron, or anacron?  I think the latter is default in ubuntu.
>>> On Wed, Aug 5, 2009 at 7:47 AM, Skip Evans<skip at bigskypenguin.com> wrote:
>>>> Neither /etc/cron.allow or cron.deny exist, but as I
>>>> understand it, if neither file exists only root can run cron,
>>>> so it still should work?
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