When al-Muktafi died in 908, it fell on Abbas and the senior bureaucrats to decide on his successor. In the end, Abbas heeded the advice of Abu'l-Hasan Ali, who counselled the selection of a weak ruler who would be easy to manipulate: al-Muktafi's 13-year-old brother Ja'far, who became Caliph al-Muqtadir
In December 908, a palace revolt broke out led by the Jarrahids and the Hamdanid al-Husayn ibn Hamdan
, aiming to install his more mature and experienced uncle, Abdallah ibn al-Mu'tazz
, in his stead. The revolt ultimately failed, but not before the rebels managed to kill Abbas.