Install from Source (Debian, Ubuntu)

These instructions outline how to install an all in one Opencast system on Ubuntu 12.04 with LTS.


Create a dedicated Opencast user:

useradd -d /opt/opencast opencast

Get Opencast source:

You can get the Opencast source code by either downloading a tarball of the source code or by cloning the Git repository. The latter option is more flexible, it is easier to upgrade and in general preferred for developers. The prior option, the tarball download, needs less tools and you do not have to download nearly as much as with Git.

Using the tarball:

Select the tarball for the version you want to install from the BitBucket downloads section .

# Download desired tarball
curl -O
tar xf ....tar.gz
cd opencast-community-...

Cloning the Git repository:

git clone
cd matterhorn
git tag   <-  List all available versions
git checkout TAG   <-  Switch to desired version

Install Dependencies

Please make sure to install the following dependencies. Note that not all dependencies are in the system repositories.


openjdk-7-jdk or openjdk-8-jdk
ffmpeg >= 3.0.1
maven >= 3.1

Required (not necessarily on the same machine):

ActiveMQ >= 5.10 (older versions untested)

Required for text extraction (recommended):

tesseract >= 3

Required for hunspell based text filtering (optional):

hunspell >= 1.2.8

Required for audio normalization (optional):

sox >= 14.4

Dependency Download

Pre-built versions of most dependencies that are not in the repositories can be downloaded from the respective project website:

Building Opencast

Automatically build all Opencast modules and assemble distributions for different server types:

cd opencast-dir
mvn clean install

Deploy all-in-one distribution:

cd build/
mv opencast-dist-allinone-*/ /opt/opencast

Make sure everything belongs to the user opencast:

sudo chown -R opencast:opencast /opt/opencast


Please follow the steps of the Basic Configuration guide. It will help you to set your hostname, login information, …

Running Opencast

To start Opencast, run .../bin/start-opencast as user opencast:

sudo -u opencast /opt/opencast/bin/start-opencast

As soon as Opencast is completely started, browse to http://localhost:8080 to get to the administration interface.

Run Opencast as a service

Usually, you do not want to run Opencast in interactive mode but as system service to make sure it is only running once on a system and is started automatically.

You will find service files for Opencast in docs/scripts/service/{opt,system}/.

Using Systemd

Make sure the path to Opencast is set correctly:

vim docs/scripts/service/opencast.service

Install the unit file:

cp docs/scripts/service/opencast.service /usr/lib/systemd/system/
systemctl daemon-reload

Start Opencast and make it run automatically:

systemctl start opencast.service
systemctl enable opencast.service

Using SysV-Init

Note that this option is for compatibility to older systems. If you have the choice of either using the Systemd unit file or the Init script, it is recommended to use the Systemd unit file.

Make sure the path to Opencast is set correctly:

vim docs/scripts/service/etc-init.d-opencast
  1. Install init script:

    cp docs/scripts/service/etc-init.d-opencast /etc/init.d/opencast
  2. Enable service using chkconfig or update-rc.d

  3. Start Opencast using

    service opencast start