I rent a VPS from a VPS company and run an Ubuntu 14.04 web server there. Recently it had to be suspended by my provider for a while. After the suspension period (1-2 days), the VPS boots, but cannot acquire any runlevels.

root@vps:/# runlevel

This, in turn, means no Upstart services are starting on boot, as the "useful stuff" requires runlevel [2345].

I can start individual services manually with initctl, unless they have dependencies which the boot did not start automatically.

I cannot find anything useful/understandable from logs. Please do ask if you want specific log entries and I can try to find them.

The server is (was) running PHP7, Nginx, MySQL, Redis, Minecraft Server, Mumble Server. The server was operating fine (and survived multiple reboots) before the suspension period.

Here is my initctl list after a fresh reboot: http://pastebin.com/fcfcnxBU. Please do ask for specific details as I'm not entirely sure where to look for them (e.g. log files, debug artifacts, files and directories, etc.).

EDIT: some progress via tinkering:

It seems the filesystem and/or network stack is not started correctly when booting. When I do the following:

$ ifup --all
$ initctl emit static-network-up
$ initctl emit filesystem
... Ctrl-C to exit loop
$ initctl emit local-filesystems

Then I get

$ runlevel
>N 2

And my server services (at least most of them) are running normally.

I'll check if there is a single command of these that makes the boot init sequence continue normally.


  • ifup --all brings up a venet0:0 which is tied to the VPS' public static IP.

  • emit static-network-up does nothing.

  • emit filesystem + Ctrl-C starts

    • rsyslog
    • ssh
    • minecraft-server
    • cron
    • xinetd
    • console
    • tty2
    • upstart-file-bridge
    • mysql

    and stops

    • plymouth
    • plymouth-upstart-bridge
  • emit local-filesystems starts

    • avahi-daemon
    • systemd-logind
    • mountall.sh
    • dbus
    • networking

    and something called network-interface-security (network-interface/lo) start/running disappears.

  • What is the output of who -r, before manually starting the srvices?
    – eyoung100
    Jul 18, 2016 at 23:43
  • Did it work before?
    – Braiam
    Jul 19, 2016 at 1:31

1 Answer 1


The init you are reading about was replaced by upstart starting with Edgy Eft 6.10; and, one of the programs provided by upstart is its own implementation of init. refer are this docs for 14.04.

To change the default runlevel, use your favorite text editor on /etc/init/rc-sysinit.conf.

sudo vim /etc/init/rc-sysinit.conf

Change this line to whichever runlevel you want...


Then, at each boot, upstart will use that runlevel.

and Reboot the System.

Still if its not starting please check weather all the Application are updated and all dependencies are installed properly and try updating them in upstart again.


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