Install NZBDrone / Sonarr on Ubuntu 14.04


NZBDrone / Sonarr is an automated TV show manager and searcher. It will find and send TV episodes to your preferred download application. As a newcomer NZBDrone has an impressive amount of features that a more mature application like Sickbeard is missing. It is recommended to use a mono 3.6 or newer.


Set up credentials

Create a system user account that NZBDrone / Sonarr will run under.

sudo useradd -r -s /bin/false -m sonarr


Create a group that NZBDrone / Sonarr will run under.

sudo groupadd media


Change the primary group of the sonarr user.

sudo usermod -g media sonarr


Verify that the group has been added correctly.

groups sonarr


Install NZBDrone / Sonarr

Add NZBDrone / Sonarr repository to your software sources.

apt-key adv --keyserver --recv-keys FDA5DFFC
echo "deb master main" | sudo tee /etc/apt/sources.list.d/sonarr.list


Update the package list.

apt-get update


Compile & Install Mono 3.6.0 or newer.


Install NZBDrone.

sudo apt-get install nzbdrone


Set the ownership to the user and group Sonarr will run as.

sudo chown -R sonarr:media /opt/NzbDrone


Set permissions to grant full access to NZBDrone / Sonarr user.

sudo chmod -R 755 /opt/NzbDrone


Run NZBDrone / Sonarr manually.

sudo mono /opt/NzbDrone/NzbDrone.exe


Access NZBDrone / Sonarr in your browser on the the current IP address and default port 8989. For example


Run NZBDrone / Sonarr at Startup

Open or create a new upstart configuration file for NZBDrone / Sonarr.

sudo nano /etc/init/sonarr.conf


Copy the script and save the configuration file.

description "NZBDrone / Sonarr upstart script"
author "DominicM @"

# Run as user
setuid sonarr

# Run as group
setgid media

# When to start the service
start on runlevel [2345]

# When to stop the service
stop on runlevel [016]

#Automatically restart process if crashed

# Start the process
exec mono /opt/NzbDrone/NzbDrone.exe
end script

Note if respawn is enabled the automatic updates will fail to install.


Run Sonarr with upstart.

start sonarr
  • BJ McCormick

    So with 15.04, I think ubuntu got rid of upstart right? So how does this tutorial change….

    • Correct. Not sure how it changes as I am not using Ubuntu anymore. On Arch Linux systemd script is installed by default.

  • Saskia Marges

    when completing this step: apt-key adv –keyserver –recv-keys FDA5DFFC

    : gpg –ignore-time-conflict –no-options –no-default-keyring –homedir /tmp/tmp.FOxVLsWMCf –no-auto-check-trustdb –trust-model always –keyring /etc/apt/trusted.gpg –primary-keyring /etc/apt/trusted.gpg –keyring /etc/apt/trusted.gpg.d/jcfp-ppa.gpg –keyserver –recv-keys FDA5DFFC
    gpg: requesting key FDA5DFFC from hkp server
    gpg: no writable keyring found: eof
    gpg: error reading `[stream]’: general error
    gpg: Total number processed: 0

    What to do?

    • I don’t use Ubuntu anymore so can’t test it but try the edited command in the post and let me know if it works.

      • Saskia Marges

        sorry, I am a newbie.. wich edited command do you mean? Thanks for your reply!

        • Code under “Add NZBDrone / Sonarr repository to your software sources.”. I edited it as it seems to have changed since original article was written.