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[GUIDE] Installing BOINC on Ubuntu from the terminal

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Ubuntu 13.10 was used for this guide. Installing BOINC on different Linux distros is outside the scope of this guide. For other Linux distros check out the BOINC Wiki for info on Installing BOINC in Linux.

For this guide we will be installing the BOINC Client and the BOINC Manager using the terminal and the package manager. There are several advantages in installing BOINC using the package manager in lieu of using the Berkley installer.

  • The resulting BOINC installation runs applications under an unprivileged account, and is therefore more secure.
  • The BOINC binaries are dynamically linked, therefore they require less memory than the binaries in the Berkeley Installer.
  • The package manager checks for dependencies and installs any additional libraries required to run BOINC on your Linux distro.
  • BOINC is installed as a daemon (BOINC runs automatically at boot time even if no user is logged in).
  • BOINC updates can be automated if your Linux distro has automated package update capability (most popular distros do)

Source: BOINC Wiki

1) Open a terminal window by clicking the "Dash" button, typing "terminal", and then clicking on the "Terminal" icon. Alternatively, you can open a terminal by typing "Ctrl+Alt+T".

a) In the terminal type:

sudo apt-get install boinc-client boinc-manager

b) Once Ubuntu locates the necessary packages it will ask you if you want to continue. Type "y".

c) The BOINC client and the BOINC Manager are now installed. To start the BOINC Manager: click on the "Dash" button, type "boinc", and then select the "BOINC Manager".

2) Now it's time to add our first BOINC project.

a) After opening the BOINC Manager you will be asked to "Add project or account manager". Select "Add project" and click "Next".

b) You can select the project that you would like to add from the "Projects" dialog box. If the project you would like to run is not listed; simply enter the project URL into the "Project URL:" box to add it to BOINC Manager. For this example I will be adding "[email protected]". Click on the project, and then click "Next".

*Note* - The majority of BOINC projects have similar installation procedures, so this guide should apply to 95% of the BOINC projects. The most notable exception is "World Community Grid". For a complete guide on installing the WCG project see the WCG installation page at: World Community Grid Help

c) If you are a new user select: "No, new user" if you are an existing user select: "Yes, existing user", and then enter the email address and password you would like to have associated with the BOINC project.

*Important* In order for BOINCStats, Free-DC, and other stats sites to properly track your stats, it is best to use the same email address and user name for all BOINC projects. After entering your email address and password click "Next".

d) The project has now been added to the BOINC Manager. Click "Finish" to go to the project page, add your username, and join the overclock.net BOINC team.

e) Enter a username. Once again it is best to use the same username for all projects. The Country and ZIP/Postal code entries are optional, and those fields can be left blank. After entering your username click "OK".

f) Enter "overclock.net" in the "Keywords" box and click "Search".

g) Click on "Overclock.net".

h) Click on "Join this team".

i) You will then be taken to your homepage for the selected project. On this page you can change your preferences for BOINC, for the project, and you can also change other account info. I would recommend bookmarking your project's account page, so that you can easily access it in the future.

j) Close the browser window, and select "Project Commands" on the BOINC Manager.

k) Click "Update"

l) To add additional projects select "Add Projects", and then follow the same steps, outlined above, to add additional BOINC projects.

3) The "Advanced View" for BOINC Manager is easy to use and is much more functional than the default "Simple View". I always recommend using the "Advanced View". To enable "Advanced View": click on the BOINC Manager window, click the "View" tab on the launcher, and then click on "Advanced" view.

4) The "Advanced View" provides a nice intuitive GUI for managing your BOINC projects.

5) To exit BOINC from the BOINC Manager: click on the BOINC Manager window, click the "File" tab on the launcher, and then click on "Exit BOINC".

*Note* If you do not check the box to "stop running tasks" then the boinc-client and any running tasks will continue to run in the background.

6) By default BOINC is now set up to start with Ubuntu. The following terminal commands will allow you to control the behavior of BOINC.

a) Disable BOINC client from starting with Ubuntu

sudo update-rc.d boinc-client disable

b) Enable the BOINC client to start with Ubuntu

sudo update-rc.d boinc-client enable

c) Stop the BOINC client

sudo /etc/init.d/boinc-client stop

d) Start the BOINC client

sudo /etc/init.d/boinc-client start

e) Check if the BOINC client is running

/etc/init.d/boinc-client status


  • Always start the boinc-client before opening the BOINC Manager Application. If the BOINC Manager is started first it can have issues connecting to the boinc-client.

All done

Now you are BOINCing for the Overclock.net BOINC team.

For more information on running BOINC projects check out the BOINC Guides and Tutorials and the Hardware Optimization forums.
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