Unix System V-style implement conventionally 7 runlevels. This runlevel implementation varies across many Linux distribution. Usually runlevel 0, 1 and 6 are the same.

  • 0 – halt
  • 1 – single mode
  • 6 – reboot

On Debian distributions runlevel 2-5 are dedicated to full multi-user mode with graphical managers and console login. Redhat/Fedora has two separate runlevels for each mode. To check the runlevel, you can use the runlevel command with no arguments:

$ runlevel

another way to check your runlevel is to use:

$ who -r

To see what services are starting during which runlevel you can use:

# chkconfig

The same command also allows you to turn off and on each service for any particular runlevel. For example to run apache2 on level 2 you will use command:

# chkconfig apache2 2


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