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dbus-launch terminated abnormally – Fix it now

by | Mar 10, 2021

Finding a way to get rid of the error message ‘dbus-launch terminated abnormally’? We can help you resolve it.

Generally, this error message occurs when we try to access a newly formatted/installed RHEL or CentOS Linux 6.x server via SSH.

Here at Bobcares, we have seen several such Linux-related errors as part of our Server Management Services for web hosts and online service providers.

Today we’ll see how to resolve this dbus error message.


How to fix the ‘dbus-launch terminated abnormally’ error

Now let’s take a look at how our Support Engineers resolve this error message.

Recently, one of our customers approached us with this error message. He received the error message when executing the below commands using tunnel X over SSH.

$ ssh -X
$ firefox &

Here is the complete error message:

**error**: Failed to contact configuration server; some possible causes are that you need to enable TCP/IP networking for ORBit, or you have stale NFS locks due to a system crash. See for information. (Details – 1: Failed to get connection to session: /bin/dbus-launch terminated abnormally without any error message)

This error message tells us that Firefox attempts to connect to the D-BUS daemon and fails as dbus-launch gets terminated abnormally.


Root Cause

1. Using su (root), sudo, suedit, gksu can lead to this error. The main reason is DBUS_SESSION_BUS_ADDRESS retains its value when we perform su instead of picking up the value in /root/.dbus/session-bus.

2. Also, if the Firefox Browser version is an older version on which updates were taken to reach the current version.



Before starting the Firefox, we need to type export $(dbus-launch)

However, this may result in another error with NSS_USE_SHARED_DB. So we have to use export NSS_USE_SHARED_DB=ENABLED as well. The most convenient way would be to put all the configuration within the .bashrc file:

export $(dbus-launch)
firefox &

We can also try to uninstall the older base version of Firefox Browser and install a recently released GA version of Firefox Browser.

In case, if the dbus-launch is not installed on the system, then we need to install the dbus-x11 package which contains the dbus-launch program.

Here are the steps to install it.

Here is the command we run to install the D-Bus and Fonts:

$ sudo yum install dbus-x11
$ sudo yum groupinstall ‘Fonts’

Now, we can run and tunnel X over ssh:

$ ssh -X
$ firefox &

[Still, not able to resolve this dbus error message? – We are here to help you]



Today, we saw how our Support Engineers resolve this dbus error message.


Never again lose customers to poor server speed! Let us help you.

Our server experts will monitor & maintain your server 24/7 so that it remains lightning fast and secure.


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server management

Spend time on your business, not on your servers.


Or click here to learn more.