systemd user units journalctl output display "No journal files were found." This only happens for the one sss user I am testing with, all local users seem to work fine. EDIT: sss does not seem to be the issue. Just this user is the problem. Exact command and output:

$journalctl --user -u myservice
No journal files were found.

system env

  • RHEL 8.4
  • systemd 239 (239-45.el8_4.3)
  • kernel: 4.18.0-305.19.1.el8_4.x86_64


I already read these posts and tried troubleshooting found within each:

I have tried the following:

  • Rebooting.
  • Redeploying the host OS.
  • Tried creating a local user to test with.
  • Made sure to login to all newly created local user account I am working with directly with SSH or terminal initially before continuing testing. Also tested sshing to the sss user account in question which I am able to.
  • Restarting journalctl services (systmectl restart systemd-journald.service)
  • Made sure /etc/systemd/journald.conf Storage=persistent. But also tried auto, and volatile, no change with any.
  • added export XDG_RUNTIME_DIR=/run/user/$(id -u) in ~/.bashrc for the local user and the user in question. Then sourced the file.
  • Confirmed linger is enabled.
  • Noticed that this problem is only happening one specific user on the box. Created new users, and this problem does not happen.
  • User account in question has a different uid from the gid/groups. However I tested adjusting a newly created account with a different uid from its gid/groups, adjusted the ~/.bashrc for the new uid, rebooted, and that account works showing the correct journalctl output.
  • User account in question appears to be an sss user.
  • Confirmed the user's d-bus channel is running with ps, I see the user is running /usr/lib/systemd/systemd --user
  • I am able to run other systmectl --user commands as the user in question. I can check status, start, stop, restart the user service.
  • When I run journalctl --user, here is the output:
    $ journalctl --user
    No journal files were found.
    -- No entries --
  • When I run journalctl --user --verify, here is the output:
    $ journalctl --user --verify
    No journal files were found.
  • I did all the above on another box where the sss user is also built, problem follows the user account.
  • I found journalctl output! but its in /var/log/messages (the default location for journalctl output to syslog for rhel systems). Wonder why it shows there but not for the --user area?
  • I checked systemctl status user.slice --no-pager and see the correct user slices for each uid with the correct services, systmectl --user status myservice shows the correct slice as well. However if I check ls /var/log/journal/<number> I do not see the user-<UID>@UUID.journal listed for the user in question.

This problem appears to only happen for the user I am testing with which was built with sss. I am not able to remove or rebuild this user as I do not manage sss on this system.

Why does this specific sss user journalctl --user output not appear but local user's do? What am I missing here? Not sure how else to troubleshoot this issue, any recommendations?

EDIT: well it does not seem to be sss related. I deployed my own AD server, integrated kerberos and SSSd, built a user, and journalctl works fine for them.

At this point I have no idea why this user's journalctl will not work, any recommendations for troubleshooting would be helpful!

EDIT2: I found journalctl output for the --user service does show in /var/log/messages but this can only be accessed by root.

1 Answer 1


I found the problem! The user in question had a UID/GID that was < 1000. I adjusted the UID/GID to "1111", logged off and back in, and the journalctl immediately started working!

After reading this post it made realize maybe journalctl was doing something that would not allow it to work with systemd --user units that it perceived as used for system users.

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .