While booting in your Linux box you may have noticed that a lot of services are starting and therefore the boot process is a bit slow. Here i'll show you how to enable/disable system services and which ones are essential for your system. Services names are taken from Fedora Core 6 but most of them are common for all Linux distros.
First of all some things about runlevels. Each one has a different purpose. In most Linux distributions runlevels are organised like this
iD Name Description
1 Single-User Mode Does not configure network interfaces, start daemons, or allow non-root logins.
2 Multi-User Mode Does not configure network interfaces or start daemons.
3 Multi-User Mode with Networking Starts the system normally.
5 X11 Runlevel 3 + X Window System.
To find out how runlevels are organised in your distro take a look in
In order to determine the runlevels in which a service is on or off we type
chkconfig --level 2345 service on/off
Now we have to find what services are running in our system. The following command gives us all the necessary information
Of course in each distro there are graphical intefaces doing this job. In Fedora Core/Red Hat systems you can type
or go to [System menu] > Administration > Server Settings > Services
From menu check Edit Runlevel menu -> Runlevels All to change runlevels 3, 4 and 5 at once.
Below there's a list of the most common services in Linux distros. After each service a brief description of the latter is given along with it's recommended status. Please have a look at this description before setting it to the recommended value since your needs may be different than mine.
It controls system's power management
Runs cron jobs
Similar to cron
Automounts filesystems on demand
DNS Zeroconf stuff
Needed only if bluetooth devices are present
Dynamic cpu speed daemon.
Status: Enabled only if your cpu supports throttling
Controls Common UNIX Printing System
Status: Enabled if printer is present
D-BUS control of the ISC DHCP client
Create dump file if system crashed
Status: Disabled (You have already done your first boot :P )
Mouse support in terminal
Daemon for collecting and maintaing information about hardware
HP Printer Service
Status: Enabled only if you have an HP printer or scanner
Controls infrared adaptors
Status: Enabled only if an infrared adaptor is present
Spreads the load across the cpus on a multiprocessor system
Status: Enabled if a multriprocessor cpu is present
Checks for new hardware.
Status: Disabled (Enable only if you change your hardaware)
Monitors motherboard sensor values.
Status: Enabled (all new motherboards have sensors)
Starts the SELinux Context Translation System Daemon
Status: Enabled only if SELinux is enabled
Software RAID monitoring and management
Status: Enabled only if RAID is present
System messenger dbus
Netconsole and netcrashdump utility
Mounts and unmounts network filesystems
on-static network interfaces management
Activats/deactivates network interfaces
Status: Enabled (Unless you have nothing to do with ethernet and wireless networks)
File sharing between Linux boxes
Status: Disabled (Unless you have a Linux-Linux LAN)
Handles passwd and group lookups for running programs
Network Time Protol
Resource manager for the PC/SC lite and Musclecard frameworks
Manages RPC connections used by protocols such as NFS and NIS
Status: Disabled (Unless you use the above protocols)
Mail Transport Agent, which is the program that moves mail from one machine to another.
Discovers routers on the local subnet
Loads into memory programs before they are needed
Handles plaintext authentication requests on behalf of the cyrus-sasl library.
Self Monitoring and Reporting Technology (SMART) Daemon
Status: Disabled (Unless needed)
Remote desktop view