I have a process which is started by systemd - lets call it A. This process spawns numerous child processes - lets just take one and call it B.

This is a C++ application. When you print to std::cout the output is captured by systemd and can be viewed with the journalctl command.

Whenever a message is printed to std::cout from process A it appears in the journalctl output with the name of process A preceding the log message - makes sense.

Nov 09 16:27:17 hostname processA [1417]: message from process A

Whenever a message is printed from process B, however, the message that is printed is still preceded by the name of process A.

Nov 09 16:27:18 hostname processA [1417]: message from process B

I presume this is expected behaviour as it displaying the name of the process that was actually started by systemd - disregarding the fact it was raised by a child of that process. It does appear as if systemd is aware of there being multiple processes when you use the systemctl status processA command though:

Active: active (running) since Wed 2016-11-09 16:27:20 GMT; 30min ago
 Main PID: 1417 (processA)
   CGroup: /system.slice/processA.service
           ├─1417 /opt/test/bin/processA
           ├─1450 /opt/test/bin/processB

My question is: Is there a way for the output in journalctl to display the child process name when it's output is captured?


I've found the answer. You need to use sd_journal_send() from systemd/sd-journal.h. You can also use the SYSLOG_IDENTIFIER and SYSLOG_PID tags to customise what is used. More info on the available tags can be found here.


std::string sysLogIdentifier("SYSLOG_IDENTIFIER=");
sysLogIdentifier += program_invocation_short_name;

std::string sysLogPid("SYSLOG_PID=");
sysLogPid += getpid();

sd_journal_send("MESSAGE=Found the answer",


Feb 10 17:11:48 hostname processB [1418]: Found the answer

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