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What is the best way? Or at least... an easily managed one?

I am routinely creating shell and python scripts that need to always be running in the background.

Any recommendations on packages that simplify this? In the past I would stick a shell script in cron to check for the running process, but this feels like a hack. I recently read about a program called Angel, which is written in Haskell that does this, but this seems like a common use that would be built in to the OS somewhere.

edit: What tool would reduce the time I spend on this activity and result in something both easily maintainable and quickly deployable to new servers?

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migrated from Oct 28 '10 at 1:54

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I regularly use supervisor for this kind of tasks. Especially for scripts that do not justify the creation of a complete SysV-init script.

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Exactly what I am looking for! "Especially for scripts that do not justify the creation of a complete SysV-init script." – mvrak Oct 28 '10 at 17:21

Ubuntu uses a custom version of /sbin/init called Upstart.

On Debian, I think you use SystemV scripts, though I'm not sure.

SystemV, if that is the case, is managed via a program called service.

They are chaning things, though. This idea was planned for Lenny (released a year ago), but I don't know if it is actually implemented.

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I consider this a general linux administration question. I deploy across several flavors of linux and will not be picking a particular tool as a solution unless it is cross-linuxy. – mvrak Oct 28 '10 at 1:16
@mvrak: Then to superuser it is! – OMG Ponies Oct 28 '10 at 1:21

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