How To: Show systemd Services

Today we’re going to have a quick and easy article, one where I show you how to show systemd services. We’ll explore a way to show all services and those services that are currently running. It’ll be nice and easy. 

At this point, systemd isn’t really all that controversial. It was for a while and there are still some people who work kinda hard to not use systemd. That’s their right and I support their choices, but I dare say that most of us now use systemd and that aiming articles at the majority is a good idea. So, I have no problem covering systemd stuff – and I have even less trouble treating it as though systemd is the default.

It’s kinda hard to pin down a definition for systemd. It’s far more than an init system, which it was replacing fairly early on. It has grown to encompass quite a bit more than that. So, let’s just look at how Wikipedia describes systemd.

systemd is a software suite that provides an array of system components for Linux[6] operating systems. Its main aim is to unify service configuration and behavior across Linux distributions;[7] Its primary component is a “system and service manager”—an init system used to bootstrap user space and manage user processes. It also provides replacements for various daemons and utilities, including device management, login management, network connection management, and event logging.

So, you can see it’s pretty expansive. For this article, we’ll be looking at the service manager aspect and how to show your systemd services. Let’s just jump into the article, so that we can keep it relatively brief.

Show systemd Services:

This article requires an open terminal, like many other articles on this site. If you don’t know how to open the terminal, you can do so with your keyboard – just press CTRL + ALT + T and your default terminal should open. (I say this so very, very often…)

So, I said I wanted to keep this article brief – and there’s really no reason to make it longer, so this is how you show all the myriad systemd services:

Or you can try:

Either one or both of those commands should show you all the systemd services, regardless of what state they’re in. Though it should show you the state of the services listed.

A more useful command for most of us would be for us to show the various systemd services that are currently active. Of course you can do that! It’s Linux! You can do everything! It’s not even hard! Just try this command:

You can also try this command:

If you pay attention to the syntax, you can also opt to show those systemd services that are inactive. It’s probably pretty obvious, but try this:

Or you can try this one (’cause you have choices):

So, as you see, you can show the systemd services in total, show the active systemd services, or choose to show the systemd services that are inactive. It’s not a complicated task and there’s no reason to make it seem complicated. As the tag line says, we’re slowly but surely bringing you up to speed!


And there you have it. You have a new article! This time you’ve learned how to show all of your assorted services – and to show the services in all their running states. Some folks like to make this sort of thing look complicated, but it’s really very easy. So, enjoy the new article and know that I appreciate your readership.

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Author: KGIII

Retired mathematician, residing in the mountains of Maine. I may be old and wise, but I am not infallible. Please point out any errors. And, as always, thanks again for reading.

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