I have BOINC Manager installed from the PPA, version 6.10.17, and I am about to upgrade my Ubuntu install with a clean install. I would like to know how I can backup my work done on BOINC so I don't loose what I have already done and have to start from scratch again. For example I am running the Climate Prediction project and it runs for a year or so, I'm at 30% work done so I want to backup that 30% work done.

Also as an addition to this, can someone advise me the best way to upgrade BOINC when new versions are released on their website but are not available on the PPA yet. I know you can install BOINC anywhere, but I want to install it to the same place the PPA install does so all my settings and work done is recognised.

Thanks in advance.


You probably want to backup two places:

  • /etc/boinc-client - your settings
  • /var/lib/boinc-client - projects, work data and logs

You need to shut down the boinc-client before the backup, copying a data file while it is in use can easily give a corrupted copy.

Note that if you backup from one boinc-client version and try to resume from a different version (which could happen under a reinstall), the backup may not work properly on the new client.

The "official" way to do a clean shutdown is

  1. In Boinc Manager select the project and then click on "No New Tasks"
  2. In Boinc Manager select each WU you have not started and click "Abort".
  3. Once the last WU has finished crunching, if it still says "Ready to Report" then select the project and click "Update"
  4. When there are no longer any tasks displayed in the Tasks tab, select the project and then click "Detach"

Alternatively, you can use the command line tool boinccmd.

  • This seems to be the solution, thank you so much for taking the time to inform me of this. If you could, would you be able to tell me the command line commands to copy these two folders to my Home folder. I have only been able to copy them to my Root Home folder usinf gksudo in Nautilus and now I have to log in as Root to back them up to disc. I don't like the idea of loggin in as Root. I am sure there is a better command line way of doing this, I just don't know the commands. – Stephen Judge Jan 12 '11 at 1:46
  • I can tell you how to copy it to your home folder, but you still wouldn't be able to back them up to disk without being root - some of these files are owned by someone else (like 'root' or 'boinc') and not readable by others. You could change ownership and/or permissions, but then the backup might not work when you restore it - since boinc depends on owning the files it is using - so you would have to remember changing it back on restore. I would suggest that you stay with being root for these backups, it's the simplest and how it is intended to work. – j-g-faustus Jan 12 '11 at 7:19
  • @Stephen But you don't need to login as root; open a terminal and type sudo su, then you are root in that terminal only, can copy whatever you like (ex. cp -R /etc/boinc-client/* /media/my-usb-disk/boinc/etc/) and stop being root by typing exit or merely closing the terminal window. – j-g-faustus Jan 12 '11 at 7:34
  • 2
    I just want to stress that copying files to machine with another processor architecture, or different video cards used for computation, can have adverse effects, such as a few tasks failing. This can cause a lot of lost work with large WUs, like CPDN ones. – hexafraction Jan 17 '13 at 13:44

I think that everything about "How to Backup" you will found here: http://www.boinc-wiki.info/Backup_BOINC

  • The answers on that page are more Windows specific, I was hoping for someone here using Ubuntu and BOINC would tell me how they backup. Thanks for the link though. – Stephen Judge Nov 7 '10 at 11:13

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