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Linux (all flavors) Folding Install Scripts and Guide

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ASCII Moderator
Apr 6, 2002
Described below are a few ways to easily install the FoldingAtHome CPU (single threaded and SMP) client in any Linux environment.

fah_install - Debian, Ubuntu, etc.
There is already a nice guide in the Ubuntu Wiki but the script hosted there still hasn't been updated to grab the newer clients. I made an update to grab the 6.29 SMP client last year, and now I've just modified it again to grab the new 6.34 SMP2 client. If you run the install script with root permissions it will install everything into /opt and install a nice startup daemon.

script attached below --v

to use:
download, extract.
$ cd ~/download
$ 7z x fah_install.7z

run the install script as root to install the program in /opt and the startup daemon.
$ cd fah_install
$ chmod a+x install.sh
$ sudo su
# ./install.sh install

the script will then ask you what client you want (most likely you want the 6.34 client, but the old 6.02 is still an option if you have some special reason to use that). It will then download the client, extract it, install it to /opt, then run the FAH config. You can then input your username, passkey, team # (32), and all the other options. At the end, it will tell you the client needs to be started by manually running the daemon.
# /etc/init.d/foldingathome start

a config file was installed to /etc/default/foldingathome which you can edit the runtime options (-smp is there by default for the SMP client). You can also edit the standard config files in /opt/foldingathome/config.

finstall - CentOS, Fedora, etc.
the original unofficial install script for FAH. It works on all flavors of linux including Ubuntu, Fedora, CentOS, and Red Hat. Unfortunately, right now it hasn't been updated to grab the new 6.34 client, but it shouldn't be too hard to modify if you don't want to wait for the maintainer to update.

to use:
$ wget -c http://ra.vendomar.ee/~ivo/finstall
$ chmod +x finstall
$ ./finstall

it will then walk you through downloading, installing, and configuring the client.

you can then copy the startup daemon script to the init.d folder and run it
$ su -
# cp /home/fah/foldingathome/folding /etc/init.d/
# chkconfig --level 35 folding on
# service folding start
for more help, check out these great links:

A graphical frontend for the finstall script. It's available in tar.gz, .deb, or via launchpad ppa for Ubuntu. For more info, check out the Ubuntu wiki

Gentoo Users:
It is very easy for you, just install it from portage as you would any program. Unfortunately, it looks like it hasn't been updated to grab the 6.34 client yet tho. (i had a little hand in this, too)
# emerge -av foldingathome

[work in progress, will update later with more info]


  • fah_install.7z
    8 KB · Views: 117
Last edited:
i wasn't the original author of the script, i just updated it to get the newer clients, but thanks for the recognition. i'll transform this into a better guide when i can find some more time.
Some achieve greatness all by themselves; others stand on the shoulders of those who are great to achieve the same goal. :p

All good, it's still a very useful script given the recent core changes. Thanks for being honest. :D
installing linux today..

I am going to pull the trigger and install linux on it's own 40 Gb partition. What is the best version of linux to use as a -bigadv cruncher, with light internet action at the most? I want to see if this "-bigadv linux is faster" thing is actually true. I have enough -bigadv data in Win7 to compare..:D

I need geek tools so I can see what's going on when I am folding.. :cool:

Trust me it's true. I've had several regular SMP folders running in Linux VMs for some time to get the extra ppd. In the VM, the Linux SMP client is not always faster, but it is never slower. On -bigadv, on the 2 WUs I've run in an Ubuntu 10.10 VM, Linux is more than 12% faster than Win 7 native bigadv.

My 2600K is popping out p6901 @ 22:02/frame ~ 59,500 ppd in the VM. It was running 24:44/frame ~50,000 ppd with the Windows 7 client.
Going with Ubuntu to test native linux

Ubuntu it is then! Is there a "better" version to use with i7 930 overclocked to 4.20 GHz?

I need to just get the basic up and running, get some tools to monitor temps and processes. I believe Vuze is no different running in *nix than win7.
I will try to get the -bigadv started as quick as possible, then dig into the OS details once the folding has started. Lots to look at.

Once I get my act together and get used to everything in Ubuntu I will be posting the numbers...:cool:


edit- for folding, do I fo with 32-bit Ubuntu or can I go 64-bit?

I know some people like older version for better performance because of some kernel changes, but unless someone corrects me, I say go for 10.10 :)
My testing of the newer, > 2.6.28, kernels indicated they were a wee bit faster than those previous. However, if you intend to run gpus, you should use <= 2.6.28 (Ubuntu 9.04) because on higher kernels, adding gpus slows SMP production to the point that there is very little net gain. Also for a while you had to install nscd to get folding to work on 10.04 and 10.10, but that appears to be fixed now.
Let me find 9.04 then. I will eventually look to get another 6870 once the GPU core plays nice with ATI.

By the time that happens we'll be using the v7 client and folding on gpus in native linux instead of wine. I'd install 10.10 since development of the new client has been tested on it. If you intend to run a hardware raid in Linux, you may want to get 10.10 server and add the gui to it. 10.10 desktop isn't very RAID friendly.
I hope those scripts work on the Ubuntu USB boot drive.

I still have the Ubuntu 8 Gb USB drive - With 6 Gb of memory I think I can run -bigadv - after I get everything else in order, maybe the end result will be a good USB boot -bigadv cruncher..

Ubuntu is not win7 that's for sure..:sly:

I tried running the attached script without success. Double-clicking on the one from the Ubuntu wiki gave me a prompt asking me if I wanted to execute it, but double-clicking on the one here just opened it in gedit.

Copying parts of the new script into the old one seemed to work.
Wedo's one click is iconic =) I used the hell out of that thing. Folding became my burn in for new builds. I made at least 10 million points doing that.
make sure install.sh is marked "executable". added "chmod a+x install.sh" to the directions above.