when I try to run

sudo systemctl enable tomcat

I get the following message

Failed to issue method call: Bad message

yet when I run

sudo systemctl status tomcat

I get this response

tomcat.service - Apache Tomcat Web Application Container
   Loaded: loaded (/etc/systemd/system/tomcat.service)
   Active: active (running) since Tue 2017-10-03 13:12:36 UTC; 2h 23min ago
   CGroup: name=dsystemd:/system/tomcat.service
           └─11428 /usr/lib/jvm/java-1.7.0-openjdk-amd64/jre/bin/java -Djava.util.logging.config.file=/opt/tomcat/conf/logging.properties...
Oct 03 13:12:36 firsttest startup.sh[11421]: Tomcat started.

indicating systemctl does know about the service


I've been trying to install tomcat on Ubuntu 14.04.5 using The Digital Ocean guide most of the process worked fine but when I try set tomcat to run on startup by running

sudo systemctl status tomcat

it fails. I've seen lots of suggestions that this is because systemctl does not know the service is running but that does not seem to be the case since

sudo systemctl status tomcat 

says the service is running. I have tried running

sudo systemctl daemon-reload


sudo systemctl enable tomcat.service

to make sure. I also have been able to access the tomcat web interface through my install so I know that it is installed and working.

I have also tried typing the command out several times to make sure it was not a typo (which a lot of people have had as problems)

Does anyone know what is causing this? how to fix this? or a workaround (if need be)?

  • What version of Ubuntu is this? – George Udosen Oct 3 '17 at 16:01
  • Are you trying to use instructions for Ubuntu Xenial on Ubuntu Tahr? – George Udosen Oct 3 '17 at 16:18
  • I've been using the Xenial instructions but clearly should have been using Ubuntu Trusty Tahr instructions, I'll try this and get back to you. – Jeff Oct 3 '17 at 17:19

Your tags say Ubuntu 14.04 so you should have run those commands like so:

sudo systemctl enable tomcat ==> sudo update-rc.d enable tomcat
sudo systemctl status tomcat ==> sudo service tomcat status

That's the way it's done on Ubuntu 14.04, systemd is used by Ubuntu 15.04 and above.


man update-rc.d

man service

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