Having problems running shell script from crontab

Matthew Seaman m.seaman at infracaninophile.co.uk
Sat Jan 7 14:30:29 UTC 2012

On 07/01/2012 13:57, RW wrote:
> On Sat, 07 Jan 2012 15:37:49 +0200
> Kaya Saman wrote:
> n terms of paths this is what I'm doing: I'm in a FreeBSD jail
>> logged in by - #jexec <jail> tcsh
>> which gets me in as root. Crontab is being run as root so paths
>> should be the same no?

No -- you can't assume that.  The correct thing to do is to set $PATH
within your script, then it should stand a much improved chance of
running correctly irrespective of how it gets started.  Add a line like
this near the top of the script:

export PATH=/bin:/usr/bin:/sbin:/usr/sbin:/usr/local/bin:/usr/local/sbin

That should be good enough for most purposes, but feel free to modify if

Another debugging tip: add

  set -x


  set -v -x

towards the top of the script and you'll get a trace of what the script
does e-mailed to you.  (Well, e-mailed to root, but I assume yould've
been reading root's mailbox anyhow, or redirected the root e-mails to
somewhere more useful.)

> PATH is set at the top of /etc/crontab

Well, yes.  However that only helps for the scripts run out of
/etc/crontab.  If the OP has done the right thing and left /etc/crontab
alone, but instead set up a root crontab by running

	# crontab -u root -e

then that wouldn't help at all.



Dr Matthew J Seaman MA, D.Phil.                   7 Priory Courtyard
                                                  Flat 3
PGP: http://www.infracaninophile.co.uk/pgpkey     Ramsgate
JID: matthew at infracaninophile.co.uk               Kent, CT11 9PW

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