Returns a list of the units, whether they are loaded, active, their sub and description.

systemctl is-failed

Returns a list of status only.

What is the syntax to return the details of the failed units?

2 Answers 2


You can use systemctl list-units --state=failed to list all failed units.

EDIT: Since systemd version 233 (March 2017) systemctl --failed is documented as equivalent to the above.

The parameters for systemctl are documented in the man page systemctl(1).

  • 43
    --failed is an alias for --state=failed
    – sshow
    Commented Aug 2, 2017 at 14:57
  • 6
    Yes thats right, but until 2017-02-02 --failed wasn't documented and marked as deprecated in the codebase (#5198)
    – cg909
    Commented Aug 2, 2017 at 19:08
  • 14
    I see. And from the PR discussion I learned that we can drop list-units and go with systemctl --failed by itself :)
    – sshow
    Commented Aug 2, 2017 at 20:22
  • 12
    I find it very irritating that systemctl status tells me the one+ things are failed, but wont tell me what. I need to run another command, not under the status subcommand to find out. Shame. Commented Jun 22, 2018 at 3:02
  • @NathanLilienthal request a change from the systemd folks. They are quite opinionated on "the one right way of doing things", though.
    – vonbrand
    Commented Feb 25, 2020 at 15:12

This is more simple:

systemctl --failed

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