Installing and configuring BOINC on openSUSE

I tried installing and configuring BOINC on openSUSE but found some struggles along the way. I think I’ve got it set up and working, although we won’t see any evidence of problems until it has been running for several days.

After installing boinc-client and boinc-manager from zypper, there is something very important that needs to be changed to the RC script (/etc/init.d/boinc-client) will actually work!

Boinc Client

openSUSE creates a user and a group both named boinc, but the user’s shell is /sbin/nologin, which doesn’t help, because the rc script uses su to execute the boinc-client as the user boinc, but it can’t because it has no shell! This gives it the Bash shell:

# usermod -s /bin/bash boinc

Boinc Manager

Normally, the boinc manager needs to be manually connected to the daemon (boinc-client). But we can fix this, so that the boinc manager connects to the daemon instance upon launching.

Check your current groups

id $USER

Now add yourself to the boinc group (boinc group must be present). The values for -g and for -G should match the output from above! But now you’re adding boinc.

usermod -g users -G audio,video,floppy,boinc $USER

Now edit some directory permissions to let you write into the boinc working directory (/var/lib/boinc). This directory was automatically created when boinc was installed.

chmod g+rwX /var/lib/boinc
ln -s /var/lib/boinc/gui_rpc_auth.cfg ~/

There is one more command that I have not yet tried, and things do seem to work without it.

chmod g+rw /var/lib/boinc/*


By default, the LOCKFILE is set to be /var/lock/subsys/boinc-client, which is very stupid, since ../subsys directory does not exist on a stock openSUSE 12.1 system! I changed it to be /var/run/${BOINCEXE_NAME}.lock (which is included as one of the comments)


Thanks to for helping me solve the boinc-manager problem.


One Reply to “Installing and configuring BOINC on openSUSE”

  1. -DC-October 23, 2012 at 9:31 am

    I still can’t get the boinc-manager to connect to the client after doing all this. Client is running, but the manager won’t connect. I got it to connect once when I logged in as root and launched manager, then connected to a project. But no such luck when running it as a service.

    openSUSE 12.2

Leave a Comment