I'm using Amazon Linux and trying to run a cron job from my home directory (I don't have sudo permissions on the machine). I'm setting a cron job by executing crontab -e and adding this line

30 18 * * * /home/myuser/run_my_script.sh

within it. However, I'm observing that things don't seem to be running, so I wanted to figure out why. But running this

[myuser@mymachine ~]$ tail /var/log/cron
tail: cannot open ‘/var/log/cron’ for reading: Permission denied

doesn't help. How can I figure out why things aren't running, or rahter where things are breaking down in my script?

1 Answer 1


Add to the end of your cron table entry: >> /home/myuser/myscript.log 2>&1

This will capture the output to a log file. By default, the output is mailed using the local mailer daemon to the user who owns the job, but I am not certain this daemon is running by default on an AWS instance. If it is, try running mail as the user owning the job; you might have some messages waiting for you with the output for which you are looking.

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