2. Getting Started

Beginning with SysAdm is a relatively simple process. SysAdm files are currently available from the github repository

2.1. Building SysAdm

Several Qt Modules are required before attempting to build SysAdm:

Qt5 Core (# pkg install qt5-core)
Qt5 Concurrent (# pkg install qt5-concurrent)
Qt5 Websockets (# pkg install qt5-websockets)

Building the prototype version of SysAdm assumes you have access to github.com.

% git clone https://github.com/trueos/sysadm.git
% cd sysadm/src
% /usr/local/lib/qt5/bin/qmake -recursive
% make && sudo make install

2.2. Starting SysAdm

SysAdm can be started one of two ways: the traditional rc(8) mechanism or using the new jobd(8) mechanism

To run under rc(8)

(For WebSockets - Required for SysAdm™ Client)
% sudo sysrc -f /etc/rc.conf sysadm_enable="YES"
% sudo service sysadm start

(Optional for REST)
% sudo sysrc -f /etc/rc.conf sysadm_rest_enable="YES"
% sudo service sysadm-rest start

To run under jobd(8)

(For WebSockets - Required for SysAdm™ Client)
% sudo jobctl org.pcbsd.sysadm enable

(Optional for REST)
% sudo jobctl org.pcbsd.sysadm-rest enable


Several ports on the system firewall will need to be opened for SysAdm to have remote access functionality:

  • Port 12149 for WebSocket interaction.
  • Port 12150 for the REST interface.
  • Port 12151 for the SysAdm bridge server.

The user can also designate their own ports for SysAdm.

2.3. Bridge Initialization

Configuring and connecting to a bridge can be a complicated process. Thankfully, there are several steps that are done the first time a server and bridge are configured with SysAdm but do not need to be repeated later. Once these steps are complete, it becomes a much simpler process for a new user to configure their client to communicate with the now configured server and bridge.


A list of current commands is available by typing -h after the utility name (Example: sysadm-bridge -h).

2.3.1. Server and Bridge

To initialize the server and bridge, begin with the server. Run sudo sysadm-binary bridge_export_key [optional absolute file path]. This will export the public SSL key the server uses to authenticate with the bridge.


For both server and client, give SSL key files an easy to remember name and location to simplify the process of finding those files for import to the bridge.

Now, we must transition to the bridge to import the server key. Login to the bridge as the administrator (or root), then type sysadm-bridge import_ssl_file <filename> <filepath>, replacing <filename> and <filepath> with the server key filename and location. Once the server key file is successfully imported, start the bridge (if not already running).


The bridge can import SSL files regardless of its active state with no negative effects.

Back on the server, run sudo sysadm-binary bridge_add <nickname> <URL> to point the server at the bridge. A bridge runs on port 12149 by default, so the URL will likely need :12149 added on the end of the address (Example URL: If necessary, (re)start the server. The log (/var/log/sysadm-server-ws.log) will display messages about connecting to the bridge. If properly configured, the server and bridge will now be communicating with each other. At this point, clients can be added to the mix which will communicate with the server through the bridge.

2.3.2. Adding a Client to the Server/Bridge Connection


If you have an old SSL bundle from a pre-alpha version of SysAdm created before June 2016, it will need to be removed prior to proceeding with the client initialization process.

In the client UI, create or import an SSL key bundle as prompted by the UI. Once the new SSL keys are created, open Setup SSL View Certificates in the connection manager and click Export Public Key for both the server and bridge keys. This will export both SSL keys in file form, depositing them in either the Desktop folder or home directory (depending on operating system). If necessary, send these key files as an email attachment to the system administrator as part of a request for server/bridge access.

Moving to the bridge, as the administrator (or root), run sysadm-bridge import_ssl_file <nickname> <filepath> for the requesting client’s bridge key file. Now the client and bridge should be able to communicate, but the client/server connection still needs to be established.

On the server, run sudo sysadm-binary import_ssl_key <username> <filepath> [<email>] to import the client -> server SSL key file. This grants an individual with the specific SSL authorization the same permissions as <user>.

Back in the user client, open the connection manager and choose Bridge Relay as the connection option. Input the established bridge’s URL and click Connect. The bridge will now show up in the menu tree with a different icon, and will have a sub-menu of connections within it. Click on the bridged system to will open the standard UI, but note the connection is still being relayed through the bridge.