keepalived man page

keepalived — load-balancing and high-availability service


keepalived [-f|--use-file=FILE] [-P|--vrrp] [-C|--check] [-l|--log-console] [-D|--log-detail] [-S|--log-facility={0-7}] [-g|--log-file=FILE] [--flush-log-file] [-G|--no-syslog] [-X|--release-vips] [-V|--dont-release-vrrp] [-I|--dont-release-ipvs] [-R|--dont-respawn] [-n|--dont-fork] [-d|--dump-conf] [-p|--pid=FILE] [-r|--vrrp_pid=FILE] [-c|--checkers_pid=FILE] [-a|--address-monitoring] [-s|--namespace=NAME] [-i|--config-id id] [-x|--snmp] [-A|--snmp-agent-socket=FILE] [-m|--core-dump] [-M|--core-dump-pattern[=PATTERN]] [--signum=SIGFUNC] [-v|--version] [-h|--help]


Keepalived provides simple and robust facilities for load-balancing and high-availability. The load-balancing framework relies on the well-known and widely used Linux Virtual Server (IPVS) kernel module providing Layer4 load-balancing. Keepalived implements a set of checkers to dynamically and adaptively maintain and manage a load-balanced server pool according to their health. Keepalived also implements the VRRPv2 and VRRPv3 protocols to achieve high-availability with director failover.


-f, --use-file=FILE

Use the specified configuration file. The default configuration file is "/etc/keepalived/keepalived.conf".

-P, --vrrp

Only run the VRRP subsystem. This is useful for configurations that do not use the IPVS load balancer.

-C, --check

Only run the healthcheck subsystem. This is useful for configurations that use the IPVS load balancer with a single director with no failover.

-l, --log-console

Log messages to the local console. The default behavior is to log messages to syslog.

-D, --log-detail

Detailed log messages.

-S, --log-facility=[0-7]

Set syslog facility to LOG_LOCAL[0-7]. The default syslog facility is LOG_DAEMON.

-g, --log-file=FILE

Write log entries to FILE. FILE will have _vrrp, _healthcheckers, and _bfd inserted before the last '.' in FILE for the log output for those processes.


If using the -g option, the log file stream will be flushed after each write.

-G, --no-syslog

Do not write log entries to syslog. This can be useful if the rate of writing log entries is sufficiently high that syslog will rate limit them, and the -g option is used instead.

-X, --release-vips

Drop VIP on transition from signal.

-V, --dont-release-vrrp

Don't remove VRRP VIPs and VROUTEs on daemon stop. The default behavior is to remove all VIPs and VROUTEs when keepalived exits.

-I, --dont-release-ipvs

Don't remove IPVS topology on daemon stop. The default behavior it to remove all entries from the IPVS virtual server table when keepalived exits.

-R, --dont-respawn

Don't respawn child processes. The default behavior is to restart the VRRP and checker processes if either process exits.

-n, --dont-fork

Don't fork the daemon process. This option will cause keepalived to run in the foreground.

-d, --dump-conf

Dump the configuration data.

-p, --pid=FILE

Use the specified pidfile for the parent keepalived process. The default pidfile for keepalived is "/var/run/", unless a network namespace is being used. See Namespaces below for more details.

-r, --vrrp_pid=FILE

Use the specified pidfile for the VRRP child process. The default pidfile for the VRRP child process is "/var/run/", unless a network namespace is being used.

-c, --checkers_pid=FILE

Use the specified pidfile for checkers child process. The default pidfile for the checker child process is "/var/run/" unless a network namespace is being used.

-a, --address-monitoring

Log all address additions/deletions reported by netlink.

-s, --namespace=NAME

Run keepalived in network namespace NAME. See Namespaces below for more details.

-i, --config-id ID

Use configuration id ID, for conditional configuration (defaults to hostname without the domain name).

-x, --snmp

Enable the SNMP subsystem.

-A, --snmp-agent-socket=FILE

Use the specified socket for connection to SNMP master agent.

-m, --core-dump

Override the RLIMIT_CORE hard and soft limits to enable keepalived to produce a coredump in the event of a segfault or other failure. This is most useful if keepalived has been built with 'make debug'. Core dumps will be created in /, unless keepalived is run with the  --dont-fork option, in which case they will be created in the directory from which keepalived was run, or they will be created in the directory of a configuraton file if the fault occurs while reading the file.

-M, --core-dump-pattern[=PATTERN]

Sets option --core-dump, and also updates /proc/sys/kernel/core_pattern to the pattern specified, or 'core' if none specified. Provided the parent process doesn't terminate abnormally, it will restore /proc/sys/kernel/core_pattern to its original value on exit.

Note: This will also affect any other process producing a core dump while keepalived is running.


Returns the signal number to use for STOP, RELOAD, DATA, STATS and JSON. For example, to stop keepalived running, execute:

kill -s $(keepalived --signum=STOP) $(cat /var/run/
-v, --version

Display the version and exit.

-h, --help

Display this help message and exit.


keepalived can be run in a network namespace (see keepalived.conf(5) for configuration details). When run in a network namespace, a local mount namespace is also created, and /var/run/keepalived/keepalived_NamespaceName is mounted on /var/run/keepalived. By default, pid files with the usual default names are then created in /var/run/keepalived from the perspective of a process in the mount namespace, and they will be visible in /var/run/keepalived/keepalived_NamespaceName for a process running in the default mount namespace.


keepalived reacts to a set of signals.  You can send a signal to the parent keepalived process using the following:

kill -SIGNAL $(cat /var/run/

or better:

kill -s $(keepalived --signum=SIGFUNC) $(cat /var/run/

Note that if the first option is used, -SIGNAL must be replaced with the actual signal you are trying to send, e.g. with HUP. So it then becomes:

kill -HUP $(cat /var/run/

Signals other than for STOP, RELOAD, DATA and STATS may change depending on the kernel, and also what functionality is included in the version of the keepalived depending on the build options used.


This causes keepalived to close down all interfaces, reload its configuration, and start up with the new configuration.


keepalived will shut down.


Write configuration data to /tmp/


Write statistics info to /tmp/keepalived.stats


Write configuration data is JSON format to /tmp/keepalived.json

See Also

keepalived.conf(5), ipvsadm(8)


This man page was written by Ryan O'Hara <>

Referenced By

genhash(1), keepalived_selinux(8).

April 2016