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You are here: MacNN Forums > Software - Troubleshooting and Discussion > macOS > SURVEY - is launchd *actually* performing your periodic tasks?

SURVEY - is launchd *actually* performing your periodic tasks?
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Hal Itosis
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Nov 21, 2006, 01:24 AM
 
Is it generally believed that launchd actually performs our periodic tasks?
Or, do most realize that -- even in OSX 10.4.8 -- the functionality of the
StartCalendarInterval parameter is still flakey at best?

I've discovered two Macs whose periodics were last run when the user did
it manually. (One in June and one in September). Supposedly, if the Mac is
off at night... launchd should manage to keep those UNIX tasks fairly up-to-
date anyway. But alas that is most often not the case. Is this news to anyone?
Or am I just behind the times? Will this issue be passed on to 10.5 Leopard?
Or... if not, will Tiger users ever be given a fix (after Leopard is released)?

If enough users participate in this survey, we should soon be able to separate
fact from fiction. Perhaps it might be working for some folks (bully for them).
But, if it's not working for EVERYONE then something is wrong... and further
investigation is warranted.

[survey]
  • 1. What version of Tiger are you running ?
    (and was it an upgrade over an older OSX, or was it Tiger from scratch?)
    -
  • 2. What does Terminal reply when you paste and enter this command ?
    ls -lhtTr /var/log/*.out /var/db/locate.database
    -
  • 3. What does Terminal reply when you paste and enter this command ?
    sudo launchctl list

    It should look something like this:
    com.apple.dashboard.advisory.fetch
    com.apple.KernelEventAgent
    com.apple.mDNSResponder
    com.apple.nibindd
    com.apple.periodic-daily
    com.apple.periodic-monthly
    com.apple.periodic-weekly

    com.apple.portmap
    com.apple.syslogd
    com.vix.cron
    org.postfix.master
    org.xinetd.xinetd
    -
  • 4. Did/do you "manually" run those periodic tasks (either with Terminal or
    some utility like anacron, OnyX, Cocktail, etc., etc.)... or, is Tiger's launchd
    doing it all for you automatically, as it should ?
    -
  • 5. What time does the Mac get shutdown ? (or does it sleep at night?)
[/survey]

I suspect that a lot of people are doing these task themselves (via some
method mentioned in question #4). Either that or, they have simply never
checked to see if the out files are up-to-date.

Good luck.
( Last edited by Hal Itosis; Nov 21, 2006 at 07:27 PM. )
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Hal Itosis  (op)
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Nov 21, 2006, 01:36 AM
 
For those with the good fortune to have launchd working its magic perfectly,
may we please verify the hours those items are set to run? This should do it:

cat /System/Library/LaunchDaemons/com.apple.periodic-*ly.plist | awk '/Hour/ { getline; print }'

Thanks.

--

ALSO, I SHOULD HAVE MENTIONED THIS POINT:
...IF YOUR MAC IS *ON* BETWEEN 3 AND 6 AM...
THEN YOU ARE EXCLUDED FROM THIS SURVEY.
( Last edited by Hal Itosis; Nov 21, 2006 at 07:25 PM. )
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Ganesha
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Nov 21, 2006, 02:03 AM
 
1. 10.4.8

2.
-rw-r--r-- 1 root wheel 487B Oct 1 18:31:38 2006 /var/log/monthly.out
-r--r--r-- 1 nobody wheel 3M Nov 12 23:44:10 2006 /var/db/locate.database
-rw-r--r-- 1 root wheel 5K Nov 12 23:44:27 2006 /var/log/weekly.out
-rw-r--r-- 1 root wheel 528K Nov 20 22:22:43 2006 /var/log/daily.out

3.
com.apple.dashboard.advisory.fetch
com.apple.KernelEventAgent
com.apple.mDNSResponder
com.apple.nibindd
com.apple.periodic-daily
com.apple.periodic-monthly
com.apple.periodic-weekly
com.apple.portmap
com.apple.syslogd
com.vix.cron
org.postfix.master
org.xinetd.xinetd

4. Automatically

5.
<integer>3</integer>
<integer>5</integer>
<integer>3</integer>
     
gradient
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Nov 21, 2006, 03:20 AM
 
1. 10.4.8

2.

-rw-r--r-- 1 root wheel 2K Sep 30 22:39:14 2006 /var/log/weekly.out
-rw-r--r-- 1 root wheel 2K Oct 3 10:59:57 2006 /var/log/monthly.out
-r--r--r-- 1 nobody wheel 3M Oct 29 01:33:16 2006 /var/db/locate.database
-rw-r--r-- 1 root wheel 221K Nov 13 11:03:49 2006 /var/log/daily.out

3.

com.apple.dashboard.advisory.fetch
com.apple.KernelEventAgent
com.apple.mDNSResponder
com.apple.nibindd
com.apple.periodic-daily
com.apple.periodic-monthly
com.apple.periodic-weekly
com.apple.portmap
com.apple.syslogd
com.vix.cron
org.samba.nmbd
org.postfix.master
org.xinetd.xinetd
org.samba.smbd

4. automatically
     
kick52
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Nov 21, 2006, 07:04 AM
 
stupid launchd doesnt launch my tasks here.. and its for freedns, so i have to update it manually... launchd is a bitch..

i used lingon to set it up.. but no joy.. it really pisses me off. i tried cron aswell, but nothing happened.
     
Goldfinger
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Nov 21, 2006, 05:36 PM
 
10.4.8 Intel. It does it. It's highly annoying when it starts crunching away and slowing down my system, oh well. On my PowerBook G4 with the same OS it didn't.

iMac 20" C2D 2.16 | Acer Aspire One | Flickr
     
Hal Itosis  (op)
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Nov 21, 2006, 06:20 PM
 
Originally Posted by gradient View Post
-rw-r--r-- 1 root wheel 2K Sep 30 22:39:14 2006 /var/log/weekly.out
-r--r--r-- 1 nobody wheel 3M Oct 29 01:33:16 2006 /var/db/locate.database
That's an interesting one.
The weekly.out and the locate.database usually date within minutes of each other.
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Hal Itosis  (op)
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Nov 21, 2006, 06:32 PM
 
Originally Posted by Ganesha View Post
-rw-r--r-- 1 root wheel 487B Oct 1 18:31:38 2006 /var/log/monthly.out
-r--r--r-- 1 nobody wheel 3M Nov 12 23:44:10 2006 /var/db/locate.database
-rw-r--r-- 1 root wheel 5K Nov 12 23:44:27 2006 /var/log/weekly.out
-rw-r--r-- 1 root wheel 528K Nov 20 22:22:43 2006 /var/log/daily.out
That one is pretty good. Only the monthly is a tiny bit behind.
I'm curious tho: when does your Mac "sleep"? Before midnight
or after?
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Chuckit
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Nov 21, 2006, 06:38 PM
 
1. It's running 10.4.8. It came with Tiger.

2.
-rw-r--r-- 1 root wheel 388B Nov 2 09:54:28 2006 /var/log/monthly.out
-rw-r--r-- 1 root wheel 114K Nov 18 03:17:59 2006 /var/log/daily.out
-r--r--r-- 1 nobody wheel 5M Nov 18 03:21:47 2006 /var/db/locate.database
-rw-r--r-- 1 root wheel 2K Nov 18 03:22:00 2006 /var/log/weekly.out
3.
com.apple.dashboard.advisory.fetch
com.apple.dnbobserverd
com.apple.KernelEventAgent
com.apple.mDNSResponder
com.apple.nibindd
com.apple.periodic-daily
com.apple.periodic-monthly
com.apple.periodic-weekly
com.apple.portmap
com.apple.syslogd
com.vix.cron
org.postfix.master
org.xinetd.xinetd
4. I have never run any of these things manually, nor do I have any tools like Onyx installed.
Chuck
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Mediaman_12
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Nov 21, 2006, 06:46 PM
 
1. 10.4.8 now, whatever Intel iMac's came with

2.
Code:
-rw-r--r-- 1 root wheel 799B Jul 2 19:37:52 2006 /var/log/monthly.out -rw-r--r-- 1 root wheel 197K Oct 14 03:15:05 2006 /var/log/daily.out -r--r--r-- 1 nobody wheel 4M Oct 14 03:19:29 2006 /var/db/locate.database -rw-r--r-- 1 root wheel 2K Oct 14 03:19:35 2006 /var/log/weekly.out
3.
Code:
com.apple.dashboard.advisory.fetch com.apple.KernelEventAgent com.apple.mDNSResponder com.apple.nibindd com.apple.periodic-daily com.apple.periodic-monthly com.apple.periodic-weekly com.apple.portmap com.apple.syslogd com.vix.cron org.samba.nmbd org.postfix.master org.xinetd.xinetd org.samba.smbd
4. I do have OnyX installed but run it infrequentely.
[edit]5. Mac gets shut OFF at night, The blinking light kept me awake. anyway my old PM tower didn't run these when I used 'sleep' at night anyway.
( Last edited by Mediaman_12; Nov 22, 2006 at 08:45 AM. )
     
Hal Itosis  (op)
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Nov 21, 2006, 06:47 PM
 
Originally Posted by Chuckit View Post
I have never run any of these things manually, nor do I have any tools like Onyx installed.
Thanks... you're in great shape there.

About what time does this Mac get shut down?
Is it _ever_ on past midnight? Weekends maybe?
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Hal Itosis  (op)
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Nov 21, 2006, 06:57 PM
 
Originally Posted by Mediaman_12 View Post
Code:
-rw-r--r-- 1 root wheel 799B Jul 2 19:37:52 2006 /var/log/monthly.out -rw-r--r-- 1 root wheel 197K Oct 14 03:15:05 2006 /var/log/daily.out -r--r--r-- 1 nobody wheel 4M Oct 14 03:19:29 2006 /var/db/locate.database -rw-r--r-- 1 root wheel 2K Oct 14 03:19:35 2006 /var/log/weekly.out
Here we go. The monthly last ran July 2nd !!!

And I'll bet on October 14th you were up late for some reason?
Or maybe the Mac was left on? Anyway... it's clear that launchd
is way behind schedule on this machine. (The daily.out is more
than a *month* off).
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Chuckit
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Nov 21, 2006, 06:58 PM
 
Originally Posted by Hal Itosis View Post
Thanks... you're in great shape there.

About what time does this Mac get shut down?
Is it _ever_ on past midnight? Weekends maybe?
I don't actually shut it down ever, but it goes to sleep after it's inactive for 10 minutes — so usually no later than 11 p.m. I don't think launchd is supposed to wake the computer, is it?
Chuck
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CharlesS
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Nov 21, 2006, 07:21 PM
 
1. 10.4.8, came with the machine, which is an iMac G5 ALS (Rev. B)

2.
Code:
$ ls -lhtTr /var/log/*.out /var/db/locate.database -rw-r--r-- 1 root wheel 1K Oct 1 19:12:26 2006 /var/log/monthly.out -r--r--r-- 1 nobody wheel 9M Nov 11 03:20:09 2006 /var/db/locate.database -rw-r--r-- 1 root wheel 13K Nov 11 03:20:27 2006 /var/log/weekly.out -rw-r--r-- 1 root wheel 711K Nov 19 03:15:04 2006 /var/log/daily.out
3.
Code:
com.apple.dashboard.advisory.fetch com.apple.dnbobserverd com.apple.KernelEventAgent com.apple.mDNSResponder com.apple.nibindd com.apple.periodic-daily com.apple.periodic-monthly com.apple.periodic-weekly com.apple.portmap com.apple.syslogd com.vix.cron org.postfix.master org.xinetd.xinetd
4. No Onyx, Cocktail, or similar program ever gets the chance to see my admin password.

Ticking sound coming from a .pkg package? Don't let the .bom go off! Inspect it first with Pacifist. Macworld - five mice!
     
Hal Itosis  (op)
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Nov 21, 2006, 07:52 PM
 
Originally Posted by Chuckit View Post
I don't think launchd is supposed to wake the computer, is it?
According to everything I've read so far, it does not "wake" the computer.
I wonder if it couldn't simply spin up the hard drive and run tasks anyway.

I dunno.


Originally Posted by Chuckit View Post
I don't actually shut it down ever, but it goes to sleep after it's inactive for 10 minutes — so usually no later than 11 p.m.
Well, your *display* might sleep in 10 minutes.
I doubt the system sleeps that soon. (Does it?).
With the different stages of sleep, it's hard to say.

Picture an office where folks leave around 5 PM.
If they shutdown their Macs from 5PM to 9AM, that
could [potentially] mean no periodic task ever executes.

if they let 'em sleep overnight . . . I dunno yet.
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CharlesS
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Nov 21, 2006, 07:59 PM
 
Originally Posted by Hal Itosis View Post
Well, your *display* might sleep in 10 minutes.
I doubt the system sleeps that soon. (Does it?).
With the different stages of sleep, it's hard to say.
It's actually quite easy to say. Just look in the Energy Saver control panel. The default setting (which you can see if you click the "Restore Defaults" button) is to put the computer and the display to sleep in 10 minutes.

Plus, it's quite simple to tell if the computer is sleeping or if it's just the display - if the computer's sleeping, the LED pulsates. If just the display's sleeping, the LED doesn't pulsate. Chuckit's been here for a long time and knows what he's doing - I doubt he'd make a mistake like that.

Ticking sound coming from a .pkg package? Don't let the .bom go off! Inspect it first with Pacifist. Macworld - five mice!
     
Hal Itosis  (op)
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Nov 21, 2006, 08:09 PM
 
Originally Posted by CharlesS View Post
Code:
-rw-r--r-- 1 root wheel 1K Oct 1 19:12:26 2006 /var/log/monthly.out -r--r--r-- 1 nobody wheel 9M Nov 11 03:20:09 2006 /var/db/locate.database -rw-r--r-- 1 root wheel 13K Nov 11 03:20:27 2006 /var/log/weekly.out -rw-r--r-- 1 root wheel 711K Nov 19 03:15:04 2006 /var/log/daily.out
Hmm, there's another monthly that missed November's run.
I wonder if the daylight savings switch plays a role in that(?).

Other than that though, no problem.

I'm thinking if the Mac is up -- even only once a month -- around 3:00 to 3:30 AM...
then the daily and weekly scripts will use that chance to play catch-up. I'm just trying to
find an explanation for how it could work so well for some, while others are months off.


Originally Posted by CharlesS View Post
[4. No Onyx, Cocktail, or similar program ever gets the chance to see my admin password.
Now now. I've typed my password in Pacifist *many* a time.
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CharlesS
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Nov 21, 2006, 08:20 PM
 
Originally Posted by Hal Itosis View Post
Now now. I've typed my password in Pacifist *many* a time.
Pacifist uses the official Security Framework APIs for the password prompt, the same as Apple's apps do. With those "maintenance" apps, I admit I haven't tried them in a while, so I don't know if this has changed or not, but it used to be that with some of them, they'd just pipe the password to sudo, causing it to get written to the swap files. I remember that once there was a furor over one of those apps that, at the time, was even putting the password right on the command line so that anyone could read the thing just by typing ps -ax into a Terminal window. I dunno what the situation is now, but as some of those apps are written in AppleScript, I doubt they could be using the Security Framework since I don't know of any AppleScript APIs for it (but then, I am not intimately familiar with AppleScript, so I could be missing something).

Ticking sound coming from a .pkg package? Don't let the .bom go off! Inspect it first with Pacifist. Macworld - five mice!
     
Hal Itosis  (op)
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Nov 21, 2006, 08:21 PM
 
Originally Posted by CharlesS View Post
The default setting (which you can see if you click the "Restore Defaults" button) is to put the computer and the display to sleep in 10 minutes.
Err ahh, what "Restore Defaults" button?
(We PowerBook owners don't have that).

But anyway fine... so it works for him.

How does that help Mediaman_12 (or
the hundreds of users here that will
probably not participate, but are all
months off-schedule nonetheless) ?

We haven't gotten any really good replies yet but
believe me I've seen a 10.4.8 machine that's used
almost daily, and hasn't run a single script since JUNE.

The com.apple.periodic jobs are all "loaded"...
but they just don't run. So. . . w h y i s t h a t ?
( Last edited by Hal Itosis; Nov 21, 2006 at 08:39 PM. )
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CharlesS
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Nov 21, 2006, 08:52 PM
 
Originally Posted by Hal Itosis View Post
Err ahh, what "Restore Defaults" button?


(default settings shown)

(We PowerBook owners don't have that).
Hmm, don't have a PowerBook with Tiger on it right now to check, but I think that if you use one of the presets (like "Longest battery life", "Highest performance", etc.) there might be one for the default setting ("Automatic" maybe?).

But anyway fine... so it works for him.

How does that help Mediaman_12 (or
the hundreds of users here that will
probably not participate, but are all
months off-schedule nonetheless) ?

We haven't gotten any really good replies yet but
believe me I've seen a 10.4.8 machine that's used
almost daily, and hasn't run a single script since JUNE.

The com.apple.periodic jobs are all "loaded"...
but they just don't run. So. . . w h y i s t h a t ?
I dunno, I thought the purpose of this thread was to find out. One thing you probably should have asked initially was whether the people sleep their computers at night or shut them down. Myself, I put mine to sleep. I see you've edited that question into your original post, but you'll have to see if people like Mediaman_12 edit their posts to answer that question.

Ticking sound coming from a .pkg package? Don't let the .bom go off! Inspect it first with Pacifist. Macworld - five mice!
     
Tuoder
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Nov 21, 2006, 09:03 PM
 
My computers are on 24/7. I changed the time they run, though. With a little fun on the command line, you can give these scripts a few more chances to run. It will also make the name of the script a misnomer, but who really cares?
     
Hal Itosis  (op)
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Nov 21, 2006, 10:11 PM
 
CharlesS,

I'd consider it a huge favor if you'd defenestrate that humongous graphic.

Cheers.
( Last edited by Hal Itosis; Nov 22, 2006 at 10:41 AM. )
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Appleman
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Nov 22, 2006, 01:47 AM
 
1. What version of Tiger are you running ?
-10.4.8-(Build 8L127) from scratch

2. What does Terminal reply when you paste and enter this command ?
ls -lhtTr /var/log/*.out /var/db/locate.database

--r--r--r-- 1 nobody wheel 7M Sep 4 03:51:11 2006 /var/db/locate.database
-rw-r--r-- 1 root wheel 967B Sep 4 03:51:22 2006 /var/log/weekly.out
-rw-r--r-- 1 root wheel 82K Oct 31 03:15:01 2006 /var/log/daily.out

3. What does Terminal reply when you paste and enter this command ?
sudo launchctl list

com.apple.dashboard.advisory.fetch
com.apple.KernelEventAgent
com.apple.mDNSResponder
com.apple.nibindd
com.apple.periodic-daily
com.apple.periodic-monthly
com.apple.periodic-weekly
com.apple.portmap
com.apple.syslogd
com.vix.cron
org.postfix.master
org.xinetd.xinetd
com.apple.cups-lpd

4. Did/do you "manually" run those periodic tasks (either with Terminal or
some utility like anacron, OnyX, Cocktail, etc., etc.)... or, is Tiger's launchd
doing it all for you automatically, as it should ?
- No

5. What time does the Mac get shutdown ? (or does it sleep at night?)
-That's too variable I would say

Where is my monthly.out???
( Last edited by Appleman; Nov 22, 2006 at 02:29 AM. Reason: discovered I do not have monthly.out)
     
Appleman
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Nov 22, 2006, 02:12 AM
 
Originally Posted by Chuckit View Post
I don't actually shut it down ever, but it goes to sleep after it's inactive for 10 minutes — so usually no later than 11 p.m. I don't think launchd is supposed to wake the computer, is it?
My Mac sleeps at night (when I sleep at night...) and so you can say it won't wake up for these "cleaners", if you look at my figures.
     
pheonixash
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Nov 22, 2006, 03:41 AM
 
1. 10.4.8

2.
-rw-r--r-- 1 root wheel 331B Nov 1 05:30:01 2006 /var/log/monthly.out
-r--r--r-- 1 nobody wheel 4M Nov 21 21:39:50 2006 /var/db/locate.database
-rw-r--r-- 1 root wheel 1K Nov 21 21:40:04 2006 /var/log/weekly.out
-rw-r--r-- 1 root wheel 107K Nov 22 03:15:04 2006 /var/log/daily.out
3.
com.apple.dashboard.advisory.fetch
com.apple.KernelEventAgent
com.apple.mDNSResponder
com.apple.nibindd
com.apple.periodic-daily
com.apple.periodic-monthly
com.apple.periodic-weekly
com.apple.portmap
com.apple.syslogd
com.vix.cron
org.samba.nmbd
org.postfix.master
org.xinetd.xinetd
com.apple.cups-lpd
org.samba.smbd
4. automatically
     
Simon
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Nov 22, 2006, 04:19 AM
 
Originally Posted by Hal Itosis View Post
That's an interesting one.
The weekly.out and the locate.database usually date within minutes of each other.
IIRC because periodic weekly triggers the locate db update.
     
Mediaman_12
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Nov 22, 2006, 08:54 AM
 
These run this infrequently because Apple have used The triggers built in to UNIX to activate them. These are fine on a Unix box, as it's more than likely to be running as a server and be active 24/7. But your average Mac is probably a single user machine where it gets left in 'sleep' or if in a home environment likely to be off during the (standard Unix) hours these run.
Apple could do some sort of check on startup, and if a schedule has been missed it would run them then.
     
Simon
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Nov 22, 2006, 09:50 AM
 
Tiger should do this. It used to be that the periodic tasks ran at their scheduled time only. Supposedly Tiger will trigger these processes if they did not run at their originally scheduled times.
     
Hal Itosis  (op)
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Nov 22, 2006, 09:58 AM
 
Originally Posted by Appleman View Post
--r--r--r-- 1 nobody wheel 7M Sep 4 03:51:11 2006 /var/db/locate.database
-rw-r--r-- 1 root wheel 967B Sep 4 03:51:22 2006 /var/log/weekly.out
-rw-r--r-- 1 root wheel 82K Oct 31 03:15:01 2006 /var/log/daily.out

Where is my monthly.out???
Funny, I was just going to ask you the same thing.

It is a small quick task that is scheduled for 5:30 A.M.
Looks like yours has *NEVER* run! (We will figure out
what the prize for that is later ).

Originally Posted by Appleman View Post
5. What time does the Mac get shutdown ? (or does it sleep at night?)
-That's too variable I would say
I guess so... the so-called "daily" has missed the last 22 days in a row,
while the weekly is over 6 weeks off. [Imagine if these were running backups!]
( Last edited by Hal Itosis; Nov 22, 2006 at 10:25 AM. )
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Hal Itosis  (op)
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Nov 22, 2006, 10:09 AM
 
Originally Posted by Simon View Post
IIRC because periodic weekly triggers the locate db update.
You do recall correctly.

Originally Posted by Simon View Post
Supposedly Tiger will trigger these processes if they did not run at their originally scheduled times.
Yeah... so they say.

By the way, how are YOUR scripts doing?
[care to post the answer to question #2?]
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Simon
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Nov 22, 2006, 11:50 AM
 
Originally Posted by Hal Itosis View Post
By the way, how are YOUR scripts doing?
[care to post the answer to question #2?]
My scripts are doing fine. This is on 10.4.8/Intel.

simon$ ls -al /var/log/*.log
-rw-r--r-- 1 root wheel 25143 Nov 22 06:10 daily.out
-rw-r--r-- 1 root wheel 490 Nov 18 17:51 weekly.out

simon$ ls -al /var/db/locate.database
-r--r--r-- 1 nobody wheel 2401817 Nov 18 17:51 /var/db/locate.database

There is no monthly log because this Mac's too new to have one.
     
Appleman
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Nov 22, 2006, 01:53 PM
 
Originally Posted by Simon View Post
There is no monthly log because this Mac's too new to have one.
I wish I could say that with my PowerMac Dual G5 2MHz, but I really do not have monthly.out!

I go for the big price though!
     
CharlesS
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Nov 22, 2006, 02:05 PM
 
Originally Posted by Appleman View Post
I wish I could say that with my PowerMac Dual G5 2MHz, but I really do not have monthly.out!
Well, no wonder it hasn't run yet if the processor is only 2 MHz.

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Appleman
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Nov 22, 2006, 02:33 PM
 
Originally Posted by CharlesS View Post
Well, no wonder it hasn't run yet if the processor is only 2 MHz.
I'm still in the Mhz myth war
     
bdaniels
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Nov 24, 2006, 06:48 PM
 
Hal,
I wanted to let you know that my launchd definitely does not seem to work - after posting my Terminal results in the "other" forum, I decided not to turn off my iMac last night - it was on, albeit in sleep mode, all night and here are the results found in Terminal this morning:

ls -lhtTr /var/log/*.out /var/db/locate.database
-rw-r--r-- 1 root wheel 55K Nov 15 20:34:58 2006 /var/log/daily.out
-r--r--r-- 1 nobody wheel 4M Nov 15 20:37:14 2006 /var/db/locate.database
-rw-r--r-- 1 root wheel 7K Nov 15 20:37:23 2006 /var/log/weekly.out
-rw-r--r-- 1 root wheel 12K Nov 15 20:37:23 2006 /var/log/monthly.out

So, although it was on, none of the tasks ran since I manually ran Onyx 9 days ago.
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Appleman
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Nov 25, 2006, 04:26 AM
 
Sleep mode doesn't count, as I said before: my PowerMac is normally always in sleep mode and (of course?) it doens't do anything then, i.e. it doesn't wke up for short cleaning work and then put it back to sleep, although "my" system does wake ME up for a short toilet service and then put me back to sleep sometimes
     
Dr.Bob
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Nov 25, 2006, 11:38 PM
 
1.
10.4.8 upgrade

2.
-rw-r--r-- 1 root wheel 3K Nov 1 05:30:37 2006 /var/log/monthly.out
-rw-r--r-- 1 root wheel 1M Nov 25 03:15:17 2006 /var/log/daily.out
-r--r--r-- 1 nobody wheel 6M Nov 25 03:31:09 2006 /var/db/locate.database
-rw-r--r-- 1 root wheel 179K Nov 25 03:31:55 2006 /var/log/weekly.out

3.
com.apple.dashboard.advisory.fetch
com.apple.KernelEventAgent
com.apple.mDNSResponder
com.apple.nibindd
com.apple.periodic-daily
com.apple.periodic-monthly
com.apple.periodic-weekly
com.apple.portmap
com.apple.syslogd
com.vix.cron
org.samba.nmbd
org.postfix.master
org.xinetd.xinetd
org.samba.smbd
com.openssh.sshd

4.
Automatically

5.
iMac stays up to do backup (typically with two users logged on.
Display sleeps after 30 min, system sleeps after 1 hour.
     
steve626
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Nov 26, 2006, 08:00 PM
 
1. System 10.4.8, updated from original 10.4, new with iMac G5

2.
-rw-r--r-- 1 root wheel 1K Sep 2 13:29:02 2006 /var/log/monthly.out
-r--r--r-- 1 nobody wheel 3M Nov 20 15:48:48 2006 /var/db/locate.database
-rw-r--r-- 1 root wheel 7K Nov 20 15:49:07 2006 /var/log/weekly.out
-rw-r--r-- 1 root wheel 428K Nov 25 19:31:46 2006 /var/log/daily.out

3.
com.apple.dashboard.advisory.fetch
com.apple.KernelEventAgent
com.apple.mDNSResponder
com.apple.nibindd
com.apple.periodic-daily
com.apple.periodic-monthly
com.apple.periodic-weekly
com.apple.portmap
com.apple.syslogd
com.vix.cron
org.postfix.master
org.xinetd.xinetd

4.
launchd is run automatically

5.
Computer is put to sleep every night at 10pm and is awakened either in the morning or mid-afternoon. Both the processor and the display are put to sleep. Rarely is actually shut down.


Here's what I see from the replies. In *most* cases, the daily and weekly tasks seem to run automatically, regardless of when the computers are awake, shut down, etc. The monthly task seems to run rarely. On the other hand, the monthly task doesn't seem to do very much, while the daily and weekly ones do quite a bit of housecleaning.

Some users' launchd never seems to run, however.
( Last edited by steve626; Nov 26, 2006 at 08:08 PM. )
     
Sourbook
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Nov 26, 2006, 10:49 PM
 
1.
System 10.4.8, Updated from 10.4.6 install disk. Powerbook G4

2.
-rw-r--r-- 1 root wheel 1011B Nov 1 11:41:27 2006 /var/log/monthly.out
-r--r--r-- 1 nobody wheel 3M Nov 11 19:06:52 2006 /var/db/locate.database
-rw-r--r-- 1 root wheel 1K Nov 11 19:07:03 2006 /var/log/weekly.out
-rw-r--r-- 1 root wheel 60K Nov 25 09:41:14 2006 /var/log/daily.out

3.
com.apple.dashboard.advisory.fetch
com.apple.KernelEventAgent
com.apple.mDNSResponder
com.apple.nibindd
com.apple.periodic-daily
com.apple.periodic-monthly
com.apple.periodic-weekly
com.apple.portmap
com.apple.syslogd
com.vix.cron
org.postfix.master
org.xinetd.xinetd

4.
Automatically

5.
Powerbook usually sleeps from 2:00am till 10am. Power off at night maybe twice a month.
( Last edited by Sourbook; Nov 27, 2006 at 03:02 AM. Reason: Changed 10.6 to 10.4.6. Oops.)
     
bdaniels
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Nov 27, 2006, 12:33 AM
 
So now it'd be interesting to find out why Steve626 and Sourbook's computers do run the tasks automatically even though they're in sleep mode, but mine doesn't. I waited 11 days without running Onyx - nothing. Finally did run Onyx again today.
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steve626
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Nov 27, 2006, 12:57 AM
 
Originally Posted by bdaniels View Post
So now it'd be interesting to find out why Steve626 and Sourbook's computers do run the tasks automatically even though they're in sleep mode, but mine doesn't. I waited 11 days without running Onyx - nothing. Finally did run Onyx again today.
I also have two computers on 10.3.9 -- one is usually on and not sleeping between 3am and 6:30am and the cron maintenance tasks do run and at exactly the same times each night. But with Tiger, which uses launchd, there seems to be some sort of process (with my one computer running Tiger) which notices when a maintenance task has been "missed" and it "makes up" the missed task, sometime before it would be missed for a second time. For instance, with the daily task, if more than 24 hrs have passed since the previous run, it usually runs it sometime before another 24-hr period goes by. I've been trying to figure out the pattern but cannot tell yet what the scheme is. I also tried to find the script that does this but never had enough time to follow through on it.

But it also appears that no one's monthly tasks are really being run every month.

I think someone will need to find and inspect the launchd instructions to really get to the bottom of this. I am guessing that something else that somehow conflicts has been installed into the systems where the periodic maintenance tasks are not running. Another possibility is that these tasks maybe (I'm guessing here) will not initiate themselves run in the background unless there is a certain amount of idle processor capacity and if some of these guys keep their computers very busy all the time and then just put them to sleep quickly when they leave them, maybe then the tasks never get a chance to run?
     
Hal Itosis  (op)
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Nov 27, 2006, 02:15 AM
 
Originally Posted by steve626 View Post
But with Tiger, which uses launchd, there seems to be some sort of process (with my one computer running Tiger) which notices when a maintenance task has been "missed" and it "makes up" the missed task, sometime before it would be missed for a second time. For instance, with the daily task, if more than 24 hrs have passed since the previous run, it usually runs it sometime before another 24-hr period goes by. I've been trying to figure out the pattern but cannot tell yet what the scheme is. I also tried to find the script that does this but never had enough time to follow through on it.
If I understand those last few sentences correctly, there is no "script" you can view with nano.
The secrets are stored in the binary bits of /sbin/launchd (and somehow I doubt the 'strings'
command would reveal enough detail to do any diagnostics with).

--

Hmm, I did hope some posts would appear with even more drastic differences.
Alas, it seems many users simply don't hang around technical message boards,
spending the time necessary to absorb all this tech-stuff. They're partying over
at youtube/craigslist/myspace or /what/have/you.

Anyway, much thanks for your interest in this subject.
-HI-
     
Chuckit
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Nov 27, 2006, 02:27 AM
 
Originally Posted by Hal Itosis View Post
If I understand those last few sentences correctly, there is no "script" you can view with nano.
The secrets are stored in the binary bits of /sbin/launchd (and somehow I doubt the 'strings'
command would reveal enough detail to do any diagnostics with).
The source code might work. Although, to be honest, I have a strong feeling launchd will be ready for bear in Leopard, so I'm not worried too much about it. Filesystem monitoring was flaky in OS X until Apple made Spotlight, which absolutely depends on it. I have a feeling Time Machine will have a similar relationship to launchd. Could be wrong — I'm not an ADC member — but that's my hunch.
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krove
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Nov 28, 2006, 01:36 AM
 
1. MacBook Pro (came with 10.4.6, i think), upgraded to 10.4.8

2.
-rw-r--r-- 1 root wheel 662B Nov 1 05:32:52 2006 /var/log/monthly.out
-r--r--r-- 1 nobody wheel 6M Nov 25 22:51:51 2006 /var/db/locate.database
-rw-r--r-- 1 root wheel 5K Nov 25 22:52:15 2006 /var/log/weekly.out
-rw-r--r-- 1 root wheel 260K Nov 27 06:17:18 2006 /var/log/daily.out

3.
com.mysql.Mysql
com.apple.dashboard.advisory.fetch
com.apple.KernelEventAgent
com.apple.mDNSResponder
com.apple.nibindd
com.apple.periodic-daily
com.apple.periodic-monthly
com.apple.periodic-weekly
com.apple.portmap
com.apple.syslogd
com.vix.cron
org.postfix.master
org.xinetd.xinetd

4. automatically

5. usually on at night, but occasionaly, asleep

6.
<integer>3</integer>
<integer>5</integer>
<integer>3</integer>
( Last edited by krove; Nov 28, 2006 at 01:37 AM. Reason: added numéro 6)

How did it come to this? Goodbye PowerPC. | sensory output
     
krove
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Nov 28, 2006, 01:41 AM
 
I have 4 other computers on which I manage StartCalendarInterval tasks that do not fire at the correct times. This is a known bug in launchd, and it is unfortunate that Apple has yet to fix it as of 10.4.8. As for the origin of the bug, it seems to depend not only on whether the computer is asleep at the time the task is supposed to run but also on how long before the next interval you actually submit the task. For example, if you submit a task that should run hourly within a minute of its next start time, it will not fire. Weirdness.

Please Apple, fix this!

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Hal Itosis  (op)
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Nov 29, 2006, 11:49 PM
 
Originally Posted by krove View Post
I have 4 other computers on which I manage StartCalendarInterval tasks that do not fire at the correct times. This is a known bug in launchd, and it is unfortunate that Apple has yet to fix it as of 10.4.8. As for the origin of the bug, it seems to depend not only on whether the computer is asleep at the time the task is supposed to run but also on how long before the next interval you actually submit the task. For example, if you submit a task that should run hourly within a minute of its next start time, it will not fire. Weirdness.
While I've focused on the built-in Unix tasks (/etc/periodic/*), launchd can really show its
short-comings when we write our own (user) tasks for it to schedule. The heavy hitters here
seem unconcerned/disinterested, because the Unix tasks on their machines are playing catch-
up adequately. Unless more people get on board, all Apple will do is make more iPods.

-HI-
     
PeterS
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Nov 30, 2006, 12:53 AM
 
1 10.4.7

2 -rw-r--r-- 1 root wheel 8K Nov 2 14:16:15 2006 /var/log/monthly.out
-r--r--r-- 1 nobody wheel 5M Nov 11 03:56:30 2006 /var/db/locate.database
-rw-r--r-- 1 root wheel 9K Nov 11 03:56:43 2006 /var/log/weekly.out
-rw-r--r-- 1 root wheel 542K Nov 30 03:15:03 2006 /var/log/daily.out

3 com.apple.dashboard.advisory.fetch
com.apple.KernelEventAgent
com.apple.mDNSResponder
com.apple.nibindd
com.apple.periodic-daily
com.apple.periodic-monthly
com.apple.periodic-weekly
com.apple.portmap
com.apple.syslogd
com.vix.cron
org.postfix.master
org.xinetd.xinetd

4 Automatically

5 My TiPB is put to sleep or shut down at various times during a week

There are several Apple Discussions Board threads on this. This one IMHO encapsulates why there is such a variation in the timing of the running of the scripts.

<http://discussions.apple.com/thread.jspa?messageID=1529838&#1529838>
     
Apfhex
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Dec 1, 2006, 06:22 AM
 
1. 10.4.8 Intel (build 8L2127)

2.
Code:
-rw-r--r-- 1 root wheel 764B Oct 1 17:39:32 2006 /var/log/monthly.out -r--r--r-- 1 nobody wheel 6M Nov 25 12:42:56 2006 /var/db/locate.database -rw-r--r-- 1 root wheel 1K Nov 25 12:43:03 2006 /var/log/weekly.out -rw-r--r-- 1 root wheel 69K Nov 30 11:43:46 2006 /var/log/daily.out
3.
Code:
com.apple.dashboard.advisory.fetch com.apple.KernelEventAgent com.apple.mDNSResponder com.apple.nibindd com.apple.periodic-daily com.apple.periodic-monthly com.apple.periodic-weekly com.apple.portmap com.apple.syslogd com.vix.cron org.postfix.master org.xinetd.xinetd
4. I've never run the tasks manually.

5. I usually put it to sleep between 12:00am and 3:00am and on very rare occasion leave it on all night.

6.
Code:
<integer>3</integer> <integer>5</integer> <integer>3</integer>
Mac OS X 10.5.0, Mac Pro 2.66GHz/2 GB RAM/X1900 XT, 23" ACD
esdesign
     
krove
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Dec 1, 2006, 11:30 PM
 
Originally Posted by Hal Itosis View Post
While I've focused on the built-in Unix tasks (/etc/periodic/*), launchd can really show its
short-comings when we write our own (user) tasks for it to schedule. The heavy hitters here
seem unconcerned/disinterested, because the Unix tasks on their machines are playing catch-
up adequately. Unless more people get on board, all Apple will do is make more iPods.

Indeed. Apple has open-sourced launchd for implementation on other platforms, so it is likely that a fix will come with Leopard. As for why a fix has not been distributed to 10.4.x computers, I have no idea. Something is up with those people...

p.s. The open-source launchd can be found at Mac OS Forge. And if you look under the Trac for launchd, you can see the email addresses of certain Apple employees that are involved with the software on a daily basis. Send an email or two or three, but be nice.

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Don Pickett
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Dec 2, 2006, 12:20 AM
 
Code:
$ ls -lhtTr /var/log/*.out /var/db/locate.database -r--r--r-- 1 nobody wheel 3M Sep 27 08:21:58 2006 /var/db/locate.database -rw-r--r-- 1 root wheel 12K Sep 27 08:22:12 2006 /var/log/weekly.out -rw-r--r-- 1 root wheel 3K Oct 2 12:01:10 2006 /var/log/monthly.out -rw-r--r-- 1 root wheel 368K Dec 1 13:37:12 2006 /var/log/daily.out $ sudo launchctl list com.apple.dashboard.advisory.fetch com.apple.KernelEventAgent com.apple.mDNSResponder com.apple.nibindd com.apple.periodic-daily com.apple.periodic-monthly com.apple.periodic-weekly com.apple.portmap com.apple.syslogd com.vix.cron org.samba.nmbd org.postfix.master org.xinetd.xinetd org.samba.smbd com.openssh.sshd
My schedule has been so variable lately I don't know if it's launchd or me.

edit:

4. I usually don't run them manually, but I am tonight.

5. Because my schedule is so variable, the machine is on at random times.
The era of anthropomorphizing hardware is over.
     
 
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