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After registration and configuration of self-hosted runner, you need to install launchd or systemd service to start runner as a daemon. Launchd service is used for macOS, systemd service is used for Linux.

Self-hosted runner periodically checks for build jobs and dequeues eligible job for pipeline execution. So, it's always up in background and works non-interactively. When service is installed successfully, it will be automatically started on operating system boot without any manual intervention.

Runner service keeps its logs at $HOME/appcircle-runner path. There are two log files:

  • stdout.log
  • stderr.log

stdout.log is connected to standard out of service and stderr.log is connected to standard error of service.

stdout.log file has build job log. You can see same build log as web UI while pipeline is executing:

tail -f stdout.log

Logs are rotated daily and are kept at most 7 days historically.

Old logs can be found under service.logs directory. Each archived log file has date suffix and compressed by gzip. If you need to view an archived log, you can use gzip -dk LOG_FILE.gz to extract archive file.


./ac-runner service -c install

Installs and starts self-hosted runner service. It's used once, while installing and configuring self-hosted runner.


./ac-runner service -c status

You can see current service status of self-hosted runner (up or down).


./ac-runner service -c start

Starts runner service if it's stopped. If runner service is down for some reason, you can try start manually.


./ac-runner service -c stop

You can disable self-hosted runner from web UI. (See, here for details)

If you need to disable self-hosted runner from CLI, you can use service stop option.

Service start from CLI will enable runner again.


Launchd or systemd service start and stop actions doesn't affect "Enabled" toggle button state on "Self-hosted Runners" list.

When a self-hosted runner service is stopped from CLI, you will see it as Offline. When service is started, it will become Online.


You should be careful for running pipelines while stopping self-hosted runner service. When you stop service, it will immediately terminate self-hosted runner process and build job will be cut. It will be still shown as in-progress build but actually it's not working. It will stuck in that state until build timeout.

Sometimes this situation may not be a problem for you, because you can cancel and retry build job with another online self-hosted runner. But if it's an unacceptable case for you, then you should check current state of runner from "Self-hosted Runners" list before stopping self-hosted runner service.

You can also follow instantly service log stdout.log for running build job. When runner becomes idle, you can stop service safely.

While waiting runner to complete its job, you can use "disable" toggle button from "self-hosted runners" list in order to prevent runner getting new build job from queue.

Service restart and uninstall processes have also same situation since they have service stop implicitly.


./ac-runner service -c restart

It's equivalent to stop and start with a single command.


./ac-runner service -c uninstall

Stops self-hosted runner service and removes launchd/systemd service entries. It reverts service install process.