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Manual page for RUNACCT(8)

runacct - run daily accounting


/usr/lib/acct/runacct [ mmdd [ state ] ]


runacct is the main daily accounting shell procedure. It is normally initiated using cron.8 runacct processes connect, fee, disk, and process accounting files. It also prepares summary files for prdaily or billing purposes.

runacct takes care not to damage active accounting files or summary files in the event of errors. It records its progress by writing descriptive diagnostic messages into active. When an error is detected, a message is written to /dev/console, mail (see mail.1 is sent to root, and runacct terminates. runacct uses a series of lock files to protect against re-invocation. The files lock and lock1 are used to prevent simultaneous invocation, and lastdate is used to prevent more than one invocation per day.

runacct breaks its processing into separate, restartable states using statefile to remember the last state completed. It accomplishes this by writing the state name into statefile. runacct then looks in statefile to see what it has done and to determine what to process next. states are executed in the following order:

Move active accounting files into working files.
Verify integrity of the wtmp file, correcting date changes if necessary.
Produce connect session records in ctmp.h format.
Convert ctmp.h records into tacct.h format.
Convert process accounting records into tacct.h format.
Merge the connect and process accounting records.
Convert output of chargefee into tacct.h format and merge with connect and process accounting records.
Merge disk accounting records with connect, process, and fee accounting records.
Merge the daily total accounting records in daytacct with the summary total accounting records in /var/adm/acct/sum/tacct.
Produce command summaries.
Any installation-dependent accounting programs can be included here.
Cleanup temporary files and exit.

To restart runacct after a failure, first check the active file for diagnostics, then fix up any corrupted data files, such as pacct or wtmp. The lock files and lastdate file must be removed before runacct can be restarted. The argument mmdd is necessary if runacct is being restarted, and specifies the month and day for which runacct will rerun the accounting. Entry point for processing is based on the contents of statefile; to override this, include the desired state on the command line to designate where processing should begin.


To start runacct:

nohup runacct 2> /var/adm/acct/nite/fd2log &

To restart runacct:

nohup runacct 0601 2>> /var/adm/acct/nite/fd2log &

To restart runacct at a specific state:

nohup runacct 0601 MERGE 2>> /var/adm/acct/nite/fd2log &




acctcom.1 mail.1 acct.2v acct.5 utmp.5v acct.8 acctcms.8 acctcon.8 acctmerg.8 acctprc.8 acctsh.8 cron.8 fwtmp.8


Normally it is not a good idea to restart runacct in the SETUP state. Run SETUP manually and restart using:

runacct mmdd WTMPFIX

If runacct failed in the PROCESS state, remove the last ptacct file because it will not be complete.

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Created by unroff & hp-tools. © by Hans-Peter Bischof. All Rights Reserved (1997).

Last modified 21/April/97