Posted By Irfad

Setup a Headless Transmission Client in Ubuntu 12.04

After searching for a solution to run Transmission BitTorrent client as a service (daemon) instead of opening manually and keep the running icon on the desktop and found ‘transmission-daemon’ package which will let us to run Transmission in a headless server or in our own NAS. Transmission daemon can be accessed by its’ web interface with a web browser from anywhere. I’ll guide you step by step on installing Transmission in Headless mode.

Installing transmission-daemon

Open terminal and type the following command
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install transmission-daemon

Next we need to create two folders where the torrent files be downloaded and a folder for uncompleted torrents as below.

mkdir ~/transmission
mkdir ~/transmission/completed ~/transmission/incomplete

Note: “~/” is your home folder, mine is /home/irfad

As transmission-daemon runs by the user ‘debian-transmission‘ we need to give full access to that user and also allow myself to have full access to the folders.

To change ownership of the directories to the debian-transmission user and it’s group type the following.

sudo chown debian-transmission:debian-transmission ~/transmission/completed 
sudo chown debian-transmission:debian-transmission ~/transmission/incomplete

Now add current user account to debian-transmission group.

sudo usermod -a -G debian-transmission irfad

Change permission of the directory to allow only owner and group to access it.

sudo chmod 770 ~/transmission/*

Edit the following lines in transmission-daemon configuration file.

sudo nano /etc/transmission-daemon/settings.json

    “download-dir”: “/home/irfad/transmission/completed”, 
    “incomplete-dir”: “/home/irfad/transmission/incomplete”, 
    “rpc-authentication-required”: true, #Authentication is enabled by default
    “rpc-password”: “geeklk”, #Set a password for username
    “rpc-port”: 9091, 
    “rpc-username”: “transmission”, #Default username
    “rpc-whitelist”: “,*.*.*.*”, #Allow access from anywhere

Save the configuration file and reload the daemon

sudo service transmission-daemon reload

Now simply type the address in the web browser and login with username ‘transmission and password given in the config file.

http://<current IP, hostname>:9091

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  • Shradha

    Hi guys, I don’t know whether this is an iletasod problem but the links for the fixed userbench 09 files are dead i get this error when i try to download:Error 500HTTP Web Server: Lotus Notes Exception Maximum number of memory segments that Notes can support has been exceededdarren Reply:January 27th, 2009 at 2:51 pmYou sure? I just tried it then and it worked for me

  • urza

    Thanks, great tutorial. Just one thing: before changing the settings you need to stop the deamon, otherwise is will rewrite the settings back when it is restarts. (it took me 3 attempts to figure it out)

    sudo service transmission-daemon stop

    ..then configure settings.json

  • Thomas_grand

    i’ve tryed to fix it my self but i’m stuck. I get 403: Forbidden error everytime i’m trying to go to webGUI. i’m running transmission o a headless machine under, trying to access it from another PC under I’ve tryed to disable whitelist- no result. Any suggestions?

  • HighAltitude

    Worked like a charm!! Thank you for this, much easier to follow than the site’s documentation

  • Heber

    I was having problems with the permission no matter how I configured the rights. I moved it to /home/transmission and provided the rights and worked great. It could be that my home directory is encrypted…

    • GeekLK

      Hi Heber,

      Yes! If your home directory is encrypted then you’ll have permission issues. Nevertheless, we’re glad that you’ve got it fixed.

      Cheerz 😉

  • Vuurvoske


    Ik keep getting problems with rights. I.e. i cannot delete torrent files. It keeps saying i need permission from debian-transmision to remove the file.

    • Irfad Razick

      What is the permission for completed and incomplete folders. You can check by ‘ls -l’ from parent directory.
      And did set the permission correctly to the folders?
      sudo chown debian-transmission:debian-transmission ~/transmission/completed
      sudo chown debian-transmission:debian-transmission ~/transmission/incomplete

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