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When a job fails, there is currently no way for another job to be run as a result of that failure. This specification proposes adding arguments to the stopping and stopped events that indicate a job failed.


It's often useful to know when a particular job fails, another job may be able to handle that case and either fix the problem or alert the user in some meaningful manner.

Use cases


The scope of this specification is limited to the addition of arguments to the existing events, and a change of behaviour to the normalexit stanza necessary to use this to its full advantage.




The Job structure in init/job.h will need to be extended to record whether a job has failed, which goal it failed in, and details about the exit status.

These are set to FALSE when a job enters the starting state, and are set appropriately in job_child_reaper in init/job.c if the job fails.

In that function, the JOB_RUNNING case that only checks normalexit if the job is to be respawned will be moved up a level; such that it is checked for all such jobs.. If the job is not to be respawned, but exited normally, then only the goal is changed and not considered to have failed.

Otherwise any script that is killed, or exits with a non-zero status is considered to have failed unless the goal is already JOB_STOP; in which case it's reasonable to assume the death was caused by reasons out of its own control.

Data preservation and migration

These changes are largely backwards compatible with the previous behaviour.

The new meaning of normalexit to decide whether a job succeeded or failed, along with the new default value, will not adversely affect any existing job; the only additional change will be an alteration in the message for non-respawn jobs.


JobFailedEvent (last edited 2006-12-15 15:34:14 by scott)