I'm currently trying to set up a OpenVPN on a Debian GNU/Linux 7 (wheezy) server, via SSH. I haven't really used Linux before, so I'm completely new to the terminal etc. However, in a guide that I followed, it said to run systemctl restart openvpn@server.
I got an error saying that systemctl wasn't found or so.. so I installed systemd. But now I get a different error: Failed to get D-Bus connection: Failed to connect to socket /run/systemd/private: No such file or directory

Any idea what that means? Is this issue even related to systemd? Or is it an OpenVPN issue?

  • 1
    Is dbus installed? If not, apt-get install dbus and then restart Aug 8, 2015 at 12:43
  • Interesting, now it only says: Failed to get D-Bus connection: No connection to service manager. Any idea how to get rid of that?
    – Forivin
    Aug 8, 2015 at 13:13
  • Is dbus running? /etc/init.d/dbus start Aug 8, 2015 at 22:31
  • Yes, it was already running.
    – Forivin
    Aug 9, 2015 at 8:02
  • Could you please execute systemctl is-system-running ? Aug 9, 2015 at 13:04

1 Answer 1


Systemd is an "init system" for Linux -- this is the first process started by the kernel when the system boots, and it is responsible for starting everything else. Your system already had an init process on it, so installing and using systemd isn't necessary to do what you want.

The error you're seeing suggests that systemd isn't actually running, which means that it has either not been configured correctly or it may simply mean you need to reboot first.

I would suggest either:

  • Using a distribution that uses systemd "out of the box", like Fedora, CentOS, Arch Linux, etc, or
  • Find a guide for Debian that is not written around systemd.

Either of these options will substantially simplify what you're trying to do.

  • I rebooted and still got the same error message. Is there maybe an alternative command for systemd restart in debian 7? Unfortunately I can't install a different distro on that server. :/ I also couldn't find another helpful guide for my distro...
    – Forivin
    Aug 8, 2015 at 11:59
  • @Forivin There is an "alternative" command: service ... restart. It's not really an alternative; it controls an alternative init system (which you seem to have installed). But it is NOT a drop-in replacement. You can't just write service openvpn@server restart. I suggest you read some documentation on Debian 7 and controlling services; explaining init systems is not fit for Q&A format. (Note: this comment is not directed to @larsks.)
    – intelfx
    Aug 8, 2015 at 13:50

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