So I am trying to run a script as a specific user @boot.

I have come across using @reboot in conjunction with crontab.

I have found that @reboot is supported by both the user and root via

@reboot echo "hello" > /root/hello.sh

and same for a regular user and the hello.sh file appeared after reboot

But if I try (tried both with roots crontab and users crontab)

@reboot ~/.reboot.sh


@reboot /home/user/.reboot.sh


@reboot user /home/user/.reboot.sh


Also the script works via




in CLI environment. Again this can't be run as root, needs to be run by the user!


The specific command I want to run is

VBoxHeadless --startvm VMNAME

And via crontab this works

*/1 * * * * VBoxHeadless --startvm VMNAME

But this does not?!

@reboot VBoxHeadless --startvm VMNAME


This works

@reboot /home/user/.reboot.sh

when .reboot.sh contains

echo "hello" > /home/user/hello.sh

So this is a problem with the VboxManage command specifically. Perhaps it lags at boot? Any thoughts are appreciated, but I think I need to look into specifically the command VboxManage, tho I did master running command @ boot as a user today! Just found this command didn't work!


I think the vbox modules just isn't available in time of execution. Why don't you create a service? Refer to corresponding documentation of your init system.

  • Yea I finally figured it out, the life of a computer guy, had 2 restart 20 times via process of elimination I figured that out! Thanks tho, I did research about a VboxAutoStart command, but I wanted to mash together mastering running something a boot then I could just edit .reboot.sh but sounds like I need a seperate set up just for Vbox.... I also read that VboxAutoStart isn't installed by default anymore fun times! – FreeSoftwareServers Oct 24 '15 at 1:20
  • Are you saying like create an init.d script? – FreeSoftwareServers Oct 24 '15 at 1:21
  • Yes, for example. You just need to correctly handle dependencies, you may enable it for runlevel '5'. – Yurii Kolesnykov Oct 24 '15 at 1:30
  • Thanks, this is what I finished with! Upstart Script – FreeSoftwareServers Oct 24 '15 at 2:38
  • NM, It's pleasure for me that I can help you. – Yurii Kolesnykov Oct 24 '15 at 2:42

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