INETD(8)                 UNIX System Manager's Manual                 INETD(8)

     inetd.conf - Internet servers database

     Upon execution, inetd reads its configuration information from a configu-
     ration file which, by default, is /etc/inetd.conf. There must be an entry
     for each field of the configuration file, with entries for each field
     separated by a tab or a space.  Comments are denoted by a ``#'' at the
     beginning of a line.  There must be an entry for each field.  The fields
     of the configuration file are as follows:

           service name
           socket type
           server program
           server program arguments

     To specify an Sun-RPC based service, the entry would contain these

           service name/version
           socket type
           server program
           server program arguments

     The service-name entry is the name of a valid service in the file
     /etc/services. For ``internal'' services (discussed below), the service
     name must be the official name of the service (that is, the first entry
     in /etc/services). When used to specify a Sun-RPC based service, this
     field is a valid RPC service name in the file /etc/rpc. The part on the
     right of the ``/'' is the RPC version number. This can simply be a single
     numeric argument or a range of versions.  A range is bounded by the low
     version to the high version - ``rusers/1-3''.

     The socket-type should be one of ``stream'', ``dgram'', ``raw'', ``rdm'',
     or ``seqpacket'', depending on whether the socket is a stream, datagram,
     raw, reliably delivered message, or sequenced packet socket.

     The protocol must be a valid protocol as given in /etc/protocols. Exam-
     ples might be ``tcp'' or ``udp''. Rpc based services are specified with
     the ``rpc/tcp'' or ``rpc/udp'' service type.

     The wait/nowait entry is applicable to datagram sockets only (other sock-
     ets should have a ``nowait'' entry in this space).  If a datagram server
     connects to its peer, freeing the socket so inetd can received further
     messages on the socket, it is said to be a ``multi-threaded'' server, and
     should use the ``nowait'' entry.  For datagram servers which process all
     incoming datagrams on a socket and eventually time out, the server is
     said to be ``single-threaded'' and should use a ``wait'' entry.  Com-
     sat((8)) (biff((1)))  and talkd((8)) are both examples of the latter type
     of datagram server.  Tftpd((8)) is an exception; it is a datagram server
     that establishes pseudo-connections.  It must be listed as ``wait'' in
     order to avoid a race; the server reads the first packet, creates a new
     socket, and then forks and exits to allow inetd to check for new service
     requests to spawn new servers.  The optional ``max'' suffix (separated
     from ``wait'' or ``nowait'' by a dot) specifies the maximum number of
     server instances that may be spawned from inetd within an interval of 60
     seconds. When omitted, ``max'' defaults to 40.

     The user entry should contain the user name of the user as whom the serv-
     er should run.  This allows for servers to be given less permission than
     root. An optional group name can be specified by appending a dot to the
     user name followed by the group name. This allows for servers to run with
     a different (primary) group id than specified in the password file. If a
     group is specified and user is not root, the supplementary groups associ-
     ated with that user will still be set.

     The server-program entry should contain the pathname of the program which
     is to be executed by inetd when a request is found on its socket.  If
     inetd provides this service internally, this entry should be

     The server program arguments should be just as arguments normally are,
     starting with argv[0], which is the name of the program.  If the service
     is provided internally, the word ``internal'' should take the place of
     this entry.

     Inetd provides several ``trivial'' services internally by use of routines
     within itself.  These services are ``echo'', ``discard'', ``chargen''
     (character generator), ``daytime'' (human readable time), and ``time''
     (machine readable time, in the form of the number of seconds since mid-
     night, January 1, 1900).  All of these services are tcp based.  For de-
     tails of these services, consult the appropriate RFC from the Network In-
     formation Center.

     Lines in inetd.conf are limited to a maximum length of 1022 characters.


 Linux NetKit 0.10             November 23, 1996                             1