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man pages section 1: User Commands

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Updated: Wednesday, July 27, 2022



svcprop - retrieve values of service configuration properties


svcprop [-afqtv] [-C | -c | -s snapshot] [-p [name/]name]...
     [ -g pgtype]... -l layer[,...] {FMRI | pattern}...
svcprop [-afqtv] [-C | -c |-s snapshot] [-G name [-G name]... [-P name]]
[-g pgtype]... -l layer[,...]
{FMRI | pattern}... 
svcprop -w [-fqtv] [-p [name/]name] {FMRI | pattern}
svcprop -w [-fqtv] [-G name [-G name]... [-P name]]
{FMRI | pattern}


The svcprop utility prints values of properties in the service configuration repository. Properties are selected by –p options and the operands. The template property group types can be any one of the following; template, template_pg_pattern, and template_prop_pattern.

The default behavior of svcprop without the –C, –c, or –s options is to access effective properties.

The effective properties of a service consists of all the properties that are set on the service.

The effective properties of a service instance includes properties in the composed view of its running snapshot(see smf(7) for an explanation of property composition and snapshot states). A composed view of all the properties in the non-persistent property groups of the service instance are also included in the effective properties despite them not being part of the running snapshot. If the running snapshot does not exist then the instance's directly attached properties are used instead. A directly attached property is an uncommitted property whch has been set on the instance or on the parent service but the instance has not been refreshed.

If the FMRI specifies a property, composition is not used to determine the effective property as it is fully specified by the FMRI.

Output Format

By default, when a single property is selected, the values for each are printed on separate lines. Empty ASCII string values are represented by a pair of double quotes (" "). Bourne shell metacharacters (';', '&', '(', ')', '|', '^', '<', '>', newline, space, tab, backslash, '"', single-quote, '`') in ASCII string values are quoted by backslashes (\).

When multiple properties are selected, a single line is printed for each. Each line comprises a property designator, a property type, and the values (as described above), separated by spaces. By default, if a single FMRI operand has been supplied, the property designator consists of the property group name and the property name joined by a slash (/). If multiple FMRI operands are supplied, the designator is the canonical FMRI for the property.

If access controls prohibit reading the value of a property, and no property or property group is specified explicitly by a –p option, the property is displayed as if it had no values. If one or more property or property group names is specified by a –p option, and any property value cannot be read due to access controls, an error results.

Error messages are printed to the standard error stream.


The following options are supported:


Display all properties, including those in SMF template definition property groups.


Uses the directly attached properties, without composition.


For service instances, uses the composed view of their directly attached properties.


Selects the multi-property output format, with full FMRIs as designators.

–G pg [–G pg ...]

For each service or service instance specified by the operands, selects all properties in the pg property group. If used with the –goption, selects the pg property for all matching property group types. The pg specified may not be a pattern. When multiple –G options appear then the options indicate how to traverse the property group hierarchy.

–G pg [–G pg ...] –P prop

Selects property prop in property group pg for each of the services or service instances specified by the operands. Neither the pg nor the prop specified may be a pattern. When multiple –G options appear, then the options indicate how to traverse the property group hierarchy.

–g pgtype

Display only properties that belong to property groups of type pgtype. Multiple –g options will display properties from multiple properties group types. This option implies multi-property output format (–t).

–l layer[,...]

Display only the properties defined at the selected layers. Available layers are manifest, system-profile, enterprise-profile, site-profile, node-profile, sysconfig-profile, and admin. The alias all is available to select all layers. Properties that belong to non-persistent property groups will not be displayed when this option is used.

–p name

For each service or service instance specified by the operands, selects all properties in the name property group. For property groups specified by the operands, selects the name property. If used with –g, selects the name property for all matching property group types. The property group name, and the property name when specified, must be encoded if a reserved character is used. For more information, see the smf(7) man page.

–p pg/prop

Selects property prop in property group pg for each of the services or service instances specified by the operands.

If –p is not used to specifically select a property or property group, svcprop will not print SMF template definition properties. More SMF infrastructure properties may be hidden from the default output in future releases. If –a is used, all properties, including SMF template definition properties, will be displayed.


Quiet. Produces no output.

–s name

Uses the composed view of the name snapshot for service instances.


Selects the multi-property output format.


Verbose. Prints error messages for non-existent properties, even if option -q is also used.


Waits until the specified property group or the property group containing the specified property changes before printing.

This option is only valid when a single entity is specified. If more than one operand is specified, or an operand matches more than one instance, an error message is printed and no action is taken. The -C option is implied.


The following operands are supported:


The FMRI of a service, a service instance, a property group, or a property.

Instances and services can be abbreviated by specifying the instance name, or the trailing portion of the service name. Properties and property groups must be specified by a full FMRI. For example, given the FMRI:


The following are valid abbreviations:


The following are invalid abbreviations:


Abbreviated forms of FMRIs are Uncommitted and should not be used in scripts or other permanent tools. If an abbreviation matches multiple instances, svcprop acts on each instance.


A glob pattern which is matched against the FMRIs of services and instances in the repository. See fnmatch(7). If a pattern exactly matches a service name, svcprop acts on that service. If the pattern matches multiple services or instances, svcprop acts on each service or instance.


Example 1 Displaying the Value of a Single Property

The following example displays the value of the state property in the restarter property group of instance default of service system/cron.

example%  svcprop -p restarter/state system/cron:default

Example 2 Determine if a Service is Enabled

Inspect the general/enabled property to determine if the service is enabled. This property takes immediate effect, so the -c option must be used as some properties may be inherited:

example%  svcprop -c -p general/enabled system/cron:default

See smf(7) for a description of composition.

Example 3 Displaying All Properties in a Property Group

On a default installation of Solaris, the following example displays all properties in the general property group of each instance of the network/ntp service:

example% svcprop -p general ntp
general/enabled boolean true
general/action_authorization astring solaris.smf.manage.ntp
general/entity_stability astring Uncommitted
general/single_instance boolean true
general/value_authorization astring solaris.smf.value.ntp

Example 4 Testing the Existence of a Property

The following example tests the existence of the general/enabled property for all instances of service identity:

example%  svcprop -q -p general/enabled identity:
example%  echo $?

Example 5 Waiting for Property Change

The following example waits for the sendmail instance to change state.

example%  svcprop -w -p restarter/state sendmail
Example 6 Retrieving the Value of a Boolean Property in a Script

The following example retrieves the value of a boolean property in a script:

set -- `svcprop -c -t -p general/enabled service`
if [ $code -ne 0 ]; then
        echo "svcprop failed with exit code $code"
        return 1
if [ $2 != boolean ]; then
         echo "general/enabled has unexpected type $2"
         return 2
if [ $# -ne 3 ]; then
          echo "general/enabled has wrong number of values"
          return 3
Example 7 Using svcprop in a Script

The following example gets the value of a service property and uses it in a script (/usr/bin/Xserver):

if svcprop -q -p ${prop} ${fmri} ; then
     propval="$(svcprop -p ${prop} "${fmri}")"
     if [[ "${propval}" == "\"\"" ]] ; then
Example 8 Filtering Output by Property Group Type

The following example gets the methods for svc:/network/ssh:default

example% svcprop -p exec -g method svc:/network/ssh:default
start/exec astring /lib/svc/method/sshd\ start
stop/exec astring :kill
refresh/exec astring /lib/svc/method/sshd\ restart
unconfigure/exec astring /lib/svc/method/sshd\ -u
Example 9 Displaying Administratively Customized Properties

The following command uses SMF layers to display administratively customized properties.

example% svcprop -p config -l admin svc:/network/dns/client
config/domain       astring     admin        my.domain.com
config/nameserver   net_address admin

Example 10 Displaying the Value of a Single Property with Reserved Characters

The following example displays the value of the current state property in the config property group of instance inst of service svc.

example% svcprop -p config/current%20state svc:inst

If specifying the property name unambiguously. then the same command may be written without the encoding by using the –G and –P options:

example% svcprop -G config -P "current state" svc:inst
Example 11 Displaying All Properties in a Nested Property Group

For a service named demo with a property group named pgb that is nested within a property group named pga, the following example would display all properties in the pgb property group in the default instance.

example% svcprop -p pga/pgb demo
pga/pgb/property astring 123

If specifying the property group name unambiguously then the same command may be written by using the –G options:

example% svcprop -G pga -G pgb demo
pga/pgb/property astring 123

Exit Status

The following exit values are returned:


Successful completion.


An error occurred.


Invalid command line options were specified.


See attributes(7) for descriptions of the following attributes:


See Also

svcs(1), service_bundle(5), attributes(7), fnmatch(7), smf(7), smf_method(7), smf_security(7), inetd(8), svc.startd(8), svcadm(8), svccfg(8)