The mcell command starts a specified cell.

mcell syntax

The following figure shows the syntax for mcell.

mcell [-h|-?] [-z] [-q] [-d] [-i[a][c][d][e]] [-r] [-n <CellName>] [-l <HomeLocation>] [-c <ConfigFile>] {-p <Var=Value>}


Cell names are case-sensitive for UNIX operating systems. When you run the mcell command on a UNIX or Linux operating system, ensure that you enter the cell name by using the correct case. If the cell name entered with mcell is not the same case as the cell name that you want to start, mcell will not start the cell.

The following table lists the command-specific options for mcell. For a list of common command options that apply to all CLI commands, see Event management common command options.

mcell options




Print the help and exit

-zPrint the version number and exit

Run the command quietly at the command prompt

Note: When you run the command, messages are not displayed at the command prompt

-dRun the command in the foreground instead of running it as a service or a daemon process

Initialize database combination of :

  • e = Events   d = Data   c = EventCounter
  • -i = -ied   -ia = -iedc
-rRun in the cell Recovery mode
-nSpecify the cell name (as defined in directory)
-lSpecify the home location of the cell


Specify a configuration file other than the default. If -c is used, all configuration files are assumed to be in the directory in which the specified configuration file is located.


Parameter Var gets Value assigned

mcell examples

On UNIX or Linux, mcell can be started from a command prompt as a daemon (running in background) or as a terminal program (running in foreground).

On Microsoft Windows, mcell can be started from a command prompt as a service or as a terminal program.

You can start the cell by using any of the following methods:

  • To start the cell in the foreground rather than as a service or daemon on UNIX and Microsoft Windows platforms, run the following command:

    mcell -n <cellName> -d
  • To start the cell as a service on a Microsoft Windows platform, run the following command:

    net start mcell_<cellName>

    When started from the command prompt without the -d option, mcell contacts the Service Control Manager to start itself as a service. It uses mcell_cellName as the service name, with the cell name as specified with the -n option. Without the -n option, the host name is taken as cellName.

mcell return codes

The following table lists the command-specific return codes for mcell. For a list of common return codes that apply to all CLI commands, see Event management return codes.

mcell return codes




Bad home directory option usage


No home directory specified


Invalid home directory specification


Application system initialization failed


Logging facility initialization failed


Knowledge Base load failed


Message handling module initialization failed


Internal object initialization failed


Event processing module initialization failed


Save state reload failed


Query handling module initialization failed


Service activation failed


Internal event module initialization failed


Metrics initialization failed


Data processing module initialization failed


Metrics activation failed


Service setup failed

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