Troubleshoot installation issues for Microsoft Defender for Endpoint on Linux

Applies to:

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Verify that the installation succeeded

An error in installation may or may not result in a meaningful error message by the package manager. To verify if the installation succeeded, obtain and check the installation logs using:

 sudo journalctl --no-pager|grep 'microsoft-mdatp' > installation.log
 grep 'postinstall end' installation.log
 microsoft-mdatp-installer[102243]: postinstall end [2020-03-26 07:04:43OURCE +0000] 102216

An output from the previous command with correct date and time of installation indicates success.

Also check the Client configuration to verify the health of the product and detect the EICAR text file.

Make sure you have the correct package

Verify that the package you are installing matches the host distribution and version.

package distribution
mdatp-rhel8.Linux.x86_64.rpm Oracle, RHEL, and CentOS 8.x
mdatp-sles12.Linux.x86_64.rpm SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 12.x
mdatp-sles15.Linux.x86_64.rpm SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 15.x
mdatp.Linux.x86_64.rpm Oracle, RHEL, and CentOS 7.x
mdatp.Linux.x86_64.deb Debian and Ubuntu 16.04, 18.04 and 20.04

For manual deployment, make sure the correct distro and version had been chosen.

Installation failed due to dependency error

If the Microsoft Defender for Endpoint installation fails due to missing dependencies errors, you can manually download the pre-requisite dependencies.

The following external package dependencies exist for the mdatp package:

  • The mdatp RPM package requires "glibc >= 2.17", "audit", "policycoreutils", "semanage", "selinux-policy-targeted", "mde-netfilter"
  • For RHEL6 the mdatp RPM package requires "audit", "policycoreutils", "libselinux", "mde-netfilter"
  • For DEBIAN the mdatp package requires "libc6 >= 2.23", "uuid-runtime", "auditd", "mde-netfilter"

The mde-netfilter package also has the following package dependencies:

  • For DEBIAN the mde-netfilter package requires "libnetfilter-queue1", "libglib2.0-0"
  • For RPM the mde-netfilter package requires "libmnl", "libnfnetlink", "libnetfilter_queue", "glib2"

Installation failed

Check if the Defender for Endpoint service is running:

service mdatp status
 ● mdatp.service - Microsoft Defender for Endpoint
   Loaded: loaded (/lib/systemd/system/mdatp.service; enabled; vendor preset: enabled)
   Active: active (running) since Thu 2020-03-26 10:37:30 IST; 23h ago
 Main PID: 1966 (wdavdaemon)
    Tasks: 105 (limit: 4915)
   CGroup: /system.slice/mdatp.service
           ├─1966 /opt/microsoft/mdatp/sbin/wdavdaemon
           ├─1967 /opt/microsoft/mdatp/sbin/wdavdaemon
           └─1968 /opt/microsoft/mdatp/sbin/wdavdaemon

Steps to troubleshoot if the mdatp service isn't running

  1. Check if "mdatp" user exists:

    id "mdatp"

    If there's no output, run

    sudo useradd --system --no-create-home --user-group --shell /usr/sbin/nologin mdatp
  2. Try enabling and restarting the service using:

    sudo service mdatp start
    sudo service mdatp restart
  3. If mdatp.service isn't found upon running the previous command, run:

    sudo cp /opt/microsoft/mdatp/conf/mdatp.service <systemd_path> 

    where <systemd_path> is /lib/systemd/system for Ubuntu and Debian distributions and /usr/lib/systemd/system` for Rhel, CentOS, Oracle and SLES. Then rerun step 2.

  4. If the above steps don't work, check if SELinux is installed and in enforcing mode. If so, try setting it to permissive (preferably) or disabled mode. It can be done by setting the parameter SELINUX to "permissive" or "disabled" in /etc/selinux/config file, followed by reboot. Check the man-page of selinux for more details. Now try restarting the mdatp service using step 2. Revert the configuration change immediately though for security reasons after trying it and reboot.

  5. If /opt directory is a symbolic link, create a bind mount for /opt/microsoft.

  6. Ensure that the daemon has executable permission.

    ls -l /opt/microsoft/mdatp/sbin/wdavdaemon
    -rwxr-xr-x 2 root root 15502160 Mar  3 04:47 /opt/microsoft/mdatp/sbin/wdavdaemon

    If the daemon doesn't have executable permissions, make it executable using:

    sudo chmod 0755 /opt/microsoft/mdatp/sbin/wdavdaemon

    and retry running step 2.

  7. Ensure that the file system containing wdavdaemon isn't mounted with "noexec".

If the Defender for Endpoint service is running, but the EICAR text file detection doesn't work

  1. Check the file system type using:

    findmnt -T <path_of_EICAR_file>

    Currently supported file systems for on-access activity are listed here. Any files outside these file systems won't be scanned.

Command-line tool "mdatp" isn't working

  1. If running the command-line tool mdatp gives an error command not found, run the following command:

    sudo ln -sf /opt/microsoft/mdatp/sbin/wdavdaemonclient /usr/bin/mdatp

    and try again.

    If none of the above steps help, collect the diagnostic logs:

    sudo mdatp diagnostic create
    Diagnostic file created: <path to file>

    Path to a zip file that contains the logs will be displayed as an output. Reach out to our customer support with these logs.


Do you want to learn more? Engage with the Microsoft Security community in our Tech Community: Microsoft Defender for Endpoint Tech Community.