Debian package

The Mopidy Debian package is available from as well as from Debian, Ubuntu and other Debian-based Linux distributions.

Running as a system service

The Debian package comes with an init script. It starts Mopidy as a system service running as the mopidy user, which is created by the package.

The Debian package version 0.18.3-1 and older starts Mopidy as a system service by default. Version 0.18.3-2 and newer asks if you want to run Mopidy as a system service, defaulting to not doing so.

If you’re running 0.18.3-2 or newer, and you’ve changed your mind about whether or not to run Mopidy as a system service, just run the following command to reconfigure the package:

sudo dpkg-reconfigure mopidy

If you’re running 0.18.3-1 or older, and don’t want to use the init script to run Mopidy as a system service, but instead just run Mopidy manually using your own user, you need to disable the init script and stop Mopidy by running:

sudo update-rc.d mopidy disable
sudo service mopidy stop

This way of disabling the system service is compatible with the improved 0.18.3-2 or newer version of the Debian package, so if you later upgrade to a newer version, you can change your mind using the dpkg-reconfigure command above.

Differences when running as a system service

If you want to run Mopidy using the init script, there’s a few differences from a regular Mopidy setup you’ll want to know about.

  • All configuration is in /etc/mopidy, not in your user’s home directory. The main configuration file is /etc/mopidy/mopidy.conf. You can do all your changes in this file.

  • Mopidy extensions installed from Debian packages will sometimes install additional configuration files in /usr/share/mopidy/conf.d/. These files just provide different defaults for the extension when run as a system service. You can override anything from /usr/share/mopidy/conf.d/ in the /etc/mopidy/mopidy.conf configuration file.

    Previously, the extension’s default config was installed in /etc/mopidy/extensions.d/. This was removed with the Debian package mopidy 0.19.4-3. If you have modified any files in /etc/mopidy/extensions.d/, you should redo your modifications in /etc/mopidy/mopidy.conf and delete the /etc/mopidy/extensions.d/ directory.

  • The init script runs Mopidy as the mopidy user. The mopidy user will need read access to any local music you want Mopidy to play.

  • To run Mopidy subcommands with the same user and config files as the init script uses, you can use sudo mopidyctl <subcommand>. In other words, where you’ll usually run:

    mopidy config

    You should instead run the following to inspect the system service’s configuration:

    sudo mopidyctl config

    The same applies to scanning your local music collection. Where you’ll normally run:

    mopidy local scan

    You should instead run:

    sudo mopidyctl local scan

    Previously, you used sudo service mopidy run <subcommand> instead of mopidyctl. This was deprecated in Debian package version 0.19.4-3 in favor of mopidyctl, which also work for systems using systemd instead of sysvinit and traditional init scripts.

  • Mopidy is started, stopped, and restarted just like any other system service:

    sudo service mopidy start
    sudo service mopidy stop
    sudo service mopidy restart
  • You can check if Mopidy is currently running as a system service by running:

    sudo service mopidy status
  • Mopidy installed from a Debian package can use both Mopidy extensions installed both from Debian packages and extensions installed with pip.

    The other way around does not work: Mopidy installed with pip can use extensions installed with pip, but not extensions installed from a Debian package. This is because the Debian packages install extensions into /usr/share/mopidy which is normally not on your PYTHONPATH. Thus, your pip-installed Mopidy will not find the Debian package-installed extensions.