SELinux is preventing virtlogd from write accesses on the fifo_file /run/systemd/inhibit/36.ref

Solution Verified - Updated -


  • Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL) 7
  • selinux-policy-3.13.1-192.el7_5.3
  • libvirt-daemon-3.9.0-14.el7_5.5


  • SELinux is preventing virtlogd from write accesses on the fifo_file /run/systemd/inhibit/36.ref
  • starting virtual machines fails after the upgrade of the libvirt-daemon package


Update to selinux-policy-3.13.1-192.el7_5.6 released with Advisory RHBA-2018:2451 or newer.

Root Cause

In the selinux-policy package up to version 3.13.1-192.el7_5.3, the communication
between virtlogd and systemd-logind processes via D-bus messages and utilizing the systemd-inhibit mechanism were denied. As a consequence, starting of virtual machines was not successful.

There was a bug tracked by bugzilla 1593740 targeted for release with RHEL 7.6 GA, the updated selinux-policy package allows the communication between virtlogd and systemd-logind processes.

Advisory RHBA-2018:2451 was released for 7.5.Z Stream.

Diagnostic Steps

  # ausearch -i -if var/log/audit/audit.log -m avc
type=PROCTITLE msg=audit(15.6.2018 22:51:07.642:725) : proctitle=/usr/sbin/virtlogd 
type=SYSCALL msg=audit(15.6.2018 22:51:07.642:725) : arch=x86_64 syscall=recvmsg success=yes exit=76 a0=0xb a1=0x7ffd28398680 a2=MSG_CMSG_CLOEXEC a3=0x7ffd28398220 items=0 ppid=1 pid=13524 auid=unset uid=root gid=root euid=root suid=root fsuid=root egid=root sgid=root fsgid=root tty=(none) ses=unset comm=virtlogd exe=/usr/sbin/virtlogd subj=system_u:system_r:virtlogd_t:s0-s0:c0.c1023 key=(null) 
type=AVC msg=audit(15.6.2018 22:51:07.642:725) : avc:  denied  { write } for  pid=13524 comm=virtlogd path=/run/systemd/inhibit/6.ref dev="tmpfs" ino=42923 scontext=system_u:system_r:virtlogd_t:s0-s0:c0.c1023 tcontext=system_u:object_r:systemd_logind_inhibit_var_run_t:s0 tclass=fifo_file 

These workarounds are available:

  # cat << EOF > local_virtlogd.te
module local_virtlogd 1.0;
require {
    type virtlogd_t;
    type systemd_logind_inhibit_var_run_t;
        class fifo_file write;

#============= chronyc_t ==============
allow virtlogd_t systemd_logind_inhibit_var_run_t:fifo_file { write };

# make -f /usr/share/selinux/devel/Makefile local_virtlogd.pp
# semodule -i local_virtlogd.pp

The selinux-policy-devel package is required to build a custom module. This approach will add only the permissions which were requested and denied, but some additional ones may be required later.

  • Make the chronyc_t domain permissive:
  # semanage permissive -a chronyc_t

This change will grant almost all possible permissions to the chronyc_t domain.

  • Turn on the daemons_use_tty boolean:
  # semanage boolean --on daemons_use_tty

This approach adds about 16 groups of permissions to various daemons domains, including chronyc_t although this is a domain for a process created off a cli command.

Once the root cause is found and the proper fix is delivered, each of the workarounds needs to be undone.

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