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Install TaskServer (taskd) on FreeBSD 11

Published on: Thu, Nov 30, 2017 at 5:50 pm EST
This article is a port of "Install TaskServer (taskd) On CentOS 7" for FreeBSD 11

TaskWarrior is an open source time management tool that is an improvement on the Todo.txt application and it's clones. Due to the fact that the average person uses multiple devices/platforms in their daily schedule, it is critical to have the ability to have a centralized repository where the data can be accessed and updated from any device. This tutorial will focus on setting up both the server, called TaskServer (taskd), and the client, called TaskWarrior (task), allowing multiple client devices to access and exchange data securely.

It possesses the following features:

  • Unlimited Tasks
  • Task Prioritizing
  • Search/Filtering
  • Tagging
  • Automatic Syncing
  • Automatic Backup
  • Full Control & Privacy
  • Encrypted Communication


  • A FreeBSD 11/10 server instance.
  • A sudo user.
  • Domain name pointed to Vultr instance (

Step 1: Update the system

Log in as a regular user who has permission to use the sudo command. Update the system as follows.

sudo freebsd-update fetch || sudo freebsd-update install

Step 2: Install TaskServer (taskd)

  1. Use FreeBSD's ports to install the TaskServer (taskd).

    sudo pkg install taskd

Step 3: Configure TaskServer (taskd)

  1. In order for TaskServer (taskd) to communicate and sync with TaskWarrior (task) clients, you will need to use the generation scripts found under /usr/local/share/taskd/ to generate server and client certificates/keys. Elevate to the root user using the command below and change directory to /usr/local/share/taskd/.

    sudo su -
    cd /usr/local/share/taskd/
  2. Use the nano program to create a vars file in order to generate a self-signed root CA.

    nano vars

Add the text below to the vars file. Change ORGANIZATION, CN, COUNTRY, STATE and LOCALITY to your satisfaction.

    STATE="New York"
    LOCALITY="New York"
  1. Generate the self-signed root CA & cert, server key & cert and server revocation list (optional).


These commands will create the following files (ca.cert.pem, ca.key.pem, server.cert.pem, server.key.pem and server.crl.pem) inside the /usr/local/share/taskd/ directory. In order for TaskServer (taskd) to start, the ownership and permissions on the certificates and keys generated must be modified to allow TaskServer (taskd) to access them.

    chown taskd.taskd ca.cert.pem ca.key.pem server.cert.pem server.crl.pem server.key.pem
    chmod 400 ca.cert.pem ca.key.pem server.cert.pem server.crl.pem server.key.pem
  1. Configure the TaskServer (taskd) daemon configuration file.

    export TASKDDATA=/var/db/taskd
    ln -s /usr/local/share/taskd/ca.cert.pem .
    ln -s /usr/local/share/taskd/server.cert.pem .
    ln -s /usr/local/share/taskd/server.crl.pem .
    ln -s /usr/local/share/taskd/server.key.pem .
    taskd init
    taskd config server
    taskd config ca.cert $TASKDDATA/ca.cert.pem
    taskd config server.cert $TASKDDATA/server.cert.pem
    taskd config server.crl $TASKDDATA/server.crl.pem
    taskd config server.key $TASKDDATA/server.key.pem
    taskd config log /var/log/taskd.log
    taskd config pid.file /var/run/
    touch /var/log/taskd.log
    chown -R taskd:taskd /var/db/taskd/ /var/log/taskd.log   
  2. Enable the TaskServer (taskd) daemon. Edit /etc/rc.conf, add the text below to the file and save it.

  3. Start the TaskServer (taskd) daemon.

    service taskd start

TaskServer (taskd) is now installed and setup on your FreeBSD 11 instance.

Step 4: Configure TaskWarrior Client Certificate & Key

Refer to the Step 5: Configure TaskWarrior Client Certificate & Key section in the Install TaskServer (taskd) On CentOS 7 tutorial.

If you need additional reading material, refer to the TaskWarrior (task) documentation here for basic usage and other related topics.

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