Spotify on OpenBSD

The easiest way to have a Spotify client on OpenBSD is to install ncspot through ports. ncspot is an ncurses Spotify client written in Rust using librespot. It is heavily inspired by ncurses MPD clients, such as ncmpc. The motivation of ncspot is to provide a simple and resource-friendly alternative to the official client as well as to support platforms that currently don’t have a Spotify client, such as the *BSDs. The only thing you need to consider is that you need a premium subscription to Spotify to use ncspot.

A simple tutorial on installation on OpenBSD is below.


~$ cd /tmp
~$ ftp$(uname -r)/{ports.tar.gz,SHA256.sig}
~$ signify -Cp /etc/signify/openbsd-$(uname -r | cut -c 1,3) -x SHA256.sig ports.tar.gz
~$ cd /usr
~$ doas tar xzf /tmp/ports.tar.gz

Currently, ncspot does not have a pre-compiled binary package, and it requires a manual compilation by the user. Step 1 is basically fetching the ports tree of OpenBSD where ncspot port is available for compilation.

Configuring Ports

~$ doas vim /etc/mk.conf
# Paste below to separate directories that are written to during port building
# Write and close the file

After configuring the directories, it is ideal for installing the binary package of Rust rather than building through the ports. Because, it takes too long, and if there is already a pre-compiled package available, I will install it directly rather than build it through ports.

Installing Rust

~$ doas pkg_add rust cargo-generate-vendor

Installing ncspot

# Searching ncspot on ports tree
~$ cd /usr/ports
~$ doas make search key=ncspot
# If you get an error says "Please install portslist", install it.
~$ doas pkg_add portslist
# The output of the search:
# Port:   ncspot-0.1.3
# Path:   audio/ncspot
# Info:   ncurses Spotify client
# Maint:  Henrik Friedrichsen <>
# Index:  audio lang/rust
# L-deps: audio/portaudio-svn
# B-deps: STEM->=1.30:lang/rust devel/cargo-generate-vendor lang/rust
# R-deps: 
# Archs:  any
~$ cd audio/ncspot
~$ doas make install

It will take some time to compile and install it. After the installation is completed, please run ncspot and log in to Spotify. And enjoy!

It is really easy to use and navigate through menus on ncspot. F2 is to search for anything you want on Spotify, and F1 is the queue of the music you want to listen to. You must like Spotify albums to make them available on the Albums menu. Otherwise, it will show it as empty.

PS: I don’t have Google Music, Tidal, or any other subscriptions other than Spotify, and I didn’t try the cargo package of ncspot or python packages for other Spotify clients such as mopidy, tizonia, etc.

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