I have a simple GPIO python script which is working correctly when F5'd from the IDLE3 IDE.

I've followed some instructions to add this to /etc/profile but it is not starting:

sudo python /home/pi/Documents/ScreamerPIR.py &

I have used this approach in the past and my scripts have started just fine.

  • What might stop a particular script starting? (this one uses pygame, whereas my previous scripts did not - could this be it?)
  • What approaches can I use to debug my problem?
  • Is there a log file anywhere?
  • Does it work if you type sudo python /home/pi/Documents/ScreamerPIR.py & from the command line?
    – joan
    Commented Oct 31, 2016 at 9:01
  • Did you check the filename case sensitivity ? Unlike Windows Linux is case sensitive. General warnings and errors logger can be viewed using dmseg . Larger list of available logs are here Commented Oct 31, 2016 at 23:01
  • Thanks both. Calling the script from the Terminal allowed me to see the errors and identify the problem (the path to a Wav file was not relative). Thanks @Joan - if you want to add an answer I'll mark it as correct. Commented Nov 1, 2016 at 11:13
  • @MarkCooper It's better if you answer the question yourself especially as the steps you took to pinpoint the problem may be relevant.
    – joan
    Commented Nov 1, 2016 at 11:18

1 Answer 1


Thanks to @joan for the steer..

Calling the command from the terminal shows the error message that was the cause of my problem.

sudo python /home/pi/Documents/ScreamerPIR.py &

Which in my case was a relative path to a wav file - the relative path works from IDLE IDE, but but when executed from /etc/profile

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