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Published by Alberto Passalacqua
Based on openSUSE Leap 42.1 64-bit x86

GeekoCFD is a live distribution based on openSUSE – 64 bit, whose purpose is to provide easy and immediate access to open-source Computational Fluid Dynamics tools. It includes cantor, gmsh, grace, gsl, wxMaxima, Octave with an almost complete selection of octave-forge packages, OpenFOAM®, Paraview, pyFoam, R. Additionally, gcc, DDD, Eclipse with CDT, Emacs, git, kate, vim and a complete openSUSE KDE installation are provided, including Gimp, LibreOffice and Blender.

All trademarks belong to their respective owners. This offering is not approved or endorsed by OpenCFD Limited, the producer of the OpenFOAM software and owner of the OPENFOAM® and OpenCFD® trade marks.


Downloaded 6018 times Cloned 236 times

Null Physical

USB Stick / Hard Disk Image

Dump this format on your USB stick or hard disk and boot from it. You may need to instruct the machine’s BIOS to boot from an external source if you’re usign a USB stick. Write the disk image using either `dd` or image writing software on your OS.

Note: This image is configured for UEFI and may not boot on non-UEFI hardware.

Null Virtual

VMware Workstation / VirtualBox (.vmdk)

For virtual machines on VMware, VirtualBox, or KVM-based hypervisors. Test an appliance without formatting any hard disk. VirtualBox and VMware applications are available for most host operating systems. KVM virtualization is for Linux only.

Release notes


Version 7.0.0 (Public release)

  • Based on openSUSE Leap 42.1
  • Upgraded to OpenFOAM 3.0.x, gmsh 2.11.0, eclipse mars 1
  • Removed meshlab, petsc, koctave3, MPlayer

Notes on past releases

  • GeekoCFD 7.0.0 is a major release of GeekoCFD. It obsoletes GeekoCFD 6.3.0, which is not available anymore, and it is unsupported. Users are advised to upgrade to GeekoCFD 7.0.0.


4 dependencies removed
2588 new dependencies
8 new files
2 new repositories
63 new software selections
7 repositories removed
54 software selections removed
Appliance configuration updated
Build configuration updated
Desktop configuration updated


Technical Details

Appliance configuration

Basic settings

Keyboard: english-us
Time zone: Europe/Berlin
Language: en_US.UTF-8
Network: network_manager
Firewall: enabled


0 patterns, 2587 packages
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Security summary


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Everyone's comments

Vishal AcharyaVishal Acharya,

Is it possible to update from 6.1.0 to a newer release (6.3.0 as of this post)? without losing any of the userfiles created inside?
What is best recommended so that newer versions can be used as they get released, without having to move userfiles from one image to another everytime?

Alberto PassalacquaAlberto Passalacqua,

Hi Vishal,

there is no automatic upgrade from one version to another, however there are a few update strategies to keep in mind.
If you are using one version of GeekoCFD and you want to upgrade to a version based on the same openSUSE release, then you probably do not need to do much. Follow these steps:

- Install openSUSE official updates
- Add the eventual packages that were included in the new release (they are typically in the openSUSE Science repository, already active in GeekoCFD, so you can use YaST to install those packages)
- Update OpenFOAM

  • Open a terminal
  • Type foam and press enter
  • Type git pull
  • Type wcleanAll
  • Rebuild OpenFOAM typing ./Allwmake

If you want to upgrade GeekoCFD to a newer version based on a more recent release of openSUSE, things are a bit more complicated.

- If you use a virtual machine, save your data to a folder shared with the host operating system, replace the virtual machine with the new one from SUSE Studio, and copy back the files from the shared folder.

- If you installed the system on actual hardware, you can upgrade openSUSE directly by replacing the repositories in YaST with those of the new version of openSUSE. OpenFOAM and other packages that were manually added won’t be upgraded. However, there are only a few of them (OpenFOAM, meshlab, pyFoam, eclipse, gmesh).

I hope to find a better solution in the future. Ideally it would be good to have all the packages built on the openSUSE build service, so that they can be easily built for all the supported releases. However this requires quite some work, especially for large packages such as OpenFOAM. Volunteers are welcome! :-)

Best regards,


Dear Alberto,

First of all, thanks for this distribution. I am running a live version of it from a 16 Gb usb stick. I had no trouble using OpenFOAM but I lost my work from session to session. Is there a way to make this live Suse persistent? I’d like to keep on running from my usb stick.

Alberto PassalacquaAlberto Passalacqua,

Dear Sergio,
the image under “Media → USB & disk image” should create a permanent installation automatically. Once burnt on the USB and booted for the first time, it will self-expand to use all the available space, and you should be able to store data in it.

Could you please let me know if this did not happen for you, or what image you are using? This operation should be automatically managed, but in case there is a problem, I will try to see if it can be fixed by me, or if it depends on Studio.


Well, “USB & disk image” was the choice at first hand, but I couldn’t uncompress it with neither RAR nor TAR for windows (the file was reportedly corrupt), even when MD5 check on the downloaded file was ok. This happened twice. So I downloaded the “ISO image” and burned on the USB. This time everything worked well until I found I lost my data.
Anyway, I will download the “USB & disk image” again and let you know if it doesn’t work.

Alberto PassalacquaAlberto Passalacqua,

Sergio ,
thank you for reporting the problem with the USB & disk image. I use PeaZip to expand tar.gz files on Windows (it is a two steps process tar.gz → tar → expanded data), and it seems reliable. However, I will check. In the meanwhile, if you still face the problem, please let me know.

If you use the ISO, you must perform an installation to obtain a permanent image, and this isn’t straightforward if you want to install to USB.

Vishal AcharyaVishal Acharya,

Thanks for bringing out this one so quickly! As a suggestion do add some of the free GUI for openfoam out there such as Helyx OS, if that is not too much trouble to add.

Alberto PassalacquaAlberto Passalacqua,

Helyx OS was included in previous releases. However I decided to drop it because their kernel is not available for openSUSE, and without it, the application returns an error and the functionality is incomplete. I will reconsider in the future, if it becomes more straighforward to install it.

Hessam MirzaeiHessam Mirzaei,

I really need help!!


I have downloaded GeekoCFD.×86_64-6.0.1.vmx.tar.gz. I have also downloaded VMware Workstation 10. My problem is that when I want to run GeekoCFD on the virtual machine, I face the following error:

the cpu has been disabled by the guest operating system

I am using laptop with Windows Vista Home Premium as the operation system and Core 2 Duo CPU 2.1GHz.

Alberto PassalacquaAlberto Passalacqua,

Hello Hessam,

the error you reported means that the guest operating system running in the virtual machine crashed or some action inside the guest operating system turned the virtual machine off.

I am not sure what is causing this. I have tested the virtual machine image with VirtualBox and on testdrive without problems.

Does GeekoCFD start booting? At what stage does this error appear?

theuns Schalkwyktheuns Schalkwyk,

Hi, thanks for the usb live. I tried running icoFoam but got the following: any ideas what went wrong?
Geeko@linux:~> icoFoam
| ===== | |
| \\ / F ield | OpenFOAM: The Open Source CFD Toolbox |
| \\ / O peration | Version: 2.2.x |
| \\ / A nd | Web: |
| \\/ M anipulation | |
Build : 2.2.x-028d63ffb0e0
Exec : icoFoam
Date : Nov 30 2013
Time : 13:03:16
Host : “”
PID : 27462
Case : /home/geeko
nProcs : 1
sigFpe : Enabling floating point exception trapping (FOAM_SIGFPE).
fileModificationChecking : Monitoring run-time modified files using timeStampMaster
allowSystemOperations : Disallowing user-supplied system call operations

// * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * //
Create time

cannot find file

file: /home/geeko/system/controlDict at line 0.

From function regIOobject::readStream() in file db/regIOobject/regIOobjectRead.C at line 73.

FOAM exiting


theuns Schalkwyktheuns Schalkwyk,

also there is no directory geeko in home that i can see…

Alberto PassalacquaAlberto Passalacqua,

Yes, this is correct. That’s the default user, and the one that should be used when using the image in live mode.

Alberto PassalacquaAlberto Passalacqua,

You are trying to run icoFoam outside of a directory containing a case. You can copy tutorials from the /opt/OpenFOAM/tutorials directory to your local directory in order to have write permissions, required to be able to run them.

theuns Schalkwyktheuns Schalkwyk,

Thanks for the reply, I copied the Basic tutorial and clicked run all and something is happening. I think this proves everything works. I must just read more to understand what is required…

Alberto PassalacquaAlberto Passalacqua,

I would suggest to follow the tutorials in the user’s guide of OpenFOAM (in /etc/OpenFOAM/OpenFOAM-2.2.x/doc or alternatively ). They should give you a quick introduction on how OpenFOAM works.

Master imMaster im,

Nice & Great information! I’d like to use Suse distro too. It’s easily for beginner like me
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Ahmad BatikhAhmad Batikh,

I’m trying to install the virtual copy of GeekoCFD, with VirtualBox and with Microsoft VPC, in the two cases and after the first boot I had :
1- at the begining the error message : error : terminal gfxterm isn’t’ found
2- after seconds, I had the startup screen of Geeko with two lines : Booting GeekoCFD [VMX] Loading Linux.vmx, loading initred.vmx.
3- nothing ealse …!!!

What dose that mean ?
My PC is 64bit, win7


Ahmad BatikhAhmad Batikh,

It’s fine. It works now with VMWare player
In fact the VirtualBox and Microsoft VPC don’t support 64bit Guest Os, so I used VMWare player

Alberto PassalacquaAlberto Passalacqua,

Hi Ahmad,

thanks for your feedback. VirtualBox should support 64 bit systems, but you have to select them when you create the virtual machine, and you must enable virtualization support in the BIOS. I have no experience with Microsoft VPC.

Best regards,


Ahmad BatikhAhmad Batikh,

Thank you so much for your great work
I already enabled the virtualization on my PC but the pb still there, in all cases the system works very good.
the only thing that 15 GB was a little small for my activity on it so I had to resize the drive to 20 GB.
Waiting for your next work..


Alberto, the problem with mpirun, reported in the SuSE RPM download site of OpenFOAM, can be permanently solved by creating a symbolic link from /etc to /usr/lib64/mpi/gcc/openmpi/, as in
ln -s /etc /usr/lib64/mpi/gcc/openmpi/
You might consider doing this in your respin for version 2.2.2 for parallel simulations to work out of the box.

Alberto PassalacquaAlberto Passalacqua,

Hi cflange, thank you. I will certainly fix that in the next release.

Tommi LaihoTommi Laiho,

Many thanks for help, I found the software after a little search. Many of them are in an opt folder. They did worked. However my problems were after that Suse related: Suse Linux could not find my Asus DG Xonar soundcard which is rather generic device. It is a problem because I need the sounds if I need to study youtube material and videos where they tell how to use CFD software. Furthermore Spotify didnt install at all to Suse, not in Wine and not after alien convert. Furthermore I simply didnt like Suse’s UI, its rather awful to use. I am sorry to say this but currently the Geeko CFD is not truly finished product but in the future I am sure that it will be. It is good idea to create an OS with ready made software for CFD. Very nice, I will check Suse next year if it works after upgrades in my comp. Meanwhile I need to use CAELinux which is nicely Ubuntu based and therefore user friendly Desktop OS. I am still excited of this GEEKOCFD but it has its problems like system stability with AMD Fire Pro workstation Linux drivers. However the fault may be at AMD but this should be supported OS at AMD. Well…better luck next time.

Alberto PassalacquaAlberto Passalacqua,

You should report your bug with the audio driver at

The problems you faced with third-party proprietary software should be reported to the manufacturer of the software itself.

I would suggest you try to look for help on the openSUSE forums or online at Freenode, in the #opensuse channel when you face problems that depend on the base openSUSE system.

Comments here should be reserved to specific issues with GeekoCFD, which are the only ones I am able to address.

Tommi LaihoTommi Laiho,

Yes. So I installed GeekoCFD. Now what…I dont understand. There are no open foam or any promised software among this installed Linux. I find only Blender and some others but not anything else. I expected these CFD software to be readily installed having readymade shortcuts. But I find practically nothing among this installation. Linux is empty. I mean there is Studio ubuntu with ready software, LinuxCAE with ready software but this Geeko has now nothing in it. What went wrong, please tell me.

Alberto PassalacquaAlberto Passalacqua,

GeekoCFD has OpenFOAM in /opt on GeekoCFD and readily available for the “geeko” user and any other user that is created via YaST. This is the case also for the rest of the software listed above. You will not see icons of these applications on the desktop, considering that most of them are ran that way, and the target user for this distribution is assumed to have some Linux and programming experience.
You did not make it clear if software does not run or if you simply could not find it. Could you please log into GeekoCFD using the “geeko” (password: geekoPasswork ) user and type “icoFoam” for example? This should show the usual OpenFOAM message when you run a case. If this is the case, the installation is successful.

Joao NóbregaJoao Nóbrega,

I have Geeko CFD 5.0.0 installed. Can you provide the guidelines to upgrade it to 5.1.0? Thanks in advance.

Alberto PassalacquaAlberto Passalacqua,

Hi Joao,
there is no supported way to directly upgrade from one version of GeekoCFD to the other one. OpenSUSE supports version upgrade by changing the version number in the URL of main repositories, and then executing zypper dup. However, this won’t upgrade OpenFOAM and the manually installed software I add to GeekoCFD. I can provide the tarballs I use for these applications however, if you want.

Joao NóbregaJoao Nóbrega,

Hi Alberto,
Thanks. Thus I believe the best (and safer) way to do it is to reinstall the system. If that’s the true I’ll do it.

Alberto PassalacquaAlberto Passalacqua,

That would be the easiest way, especially if you have a separate /home directory. You can simply keep the same home directory or rename it to username.old before installing if you prefer a clean one, and then copy your data to the new one.

Upgrading with zypper dup is relatively safe, if you have only a few repositories and no specific configuration, but indeed it’s not always bulletproof.

Louis FaradayLouis Faraday,

Hello Mr. Passalacqua! I’ve downloaded GeekoCFD for the VirtualBox but if I want to extract the files an error is appearing, that the file is broken.

Alberto PassalacquaAlberto Passalacqua,

Could you please provide more details on the error message you get?

Alberto PassalacquaAlberto Passalacqua,

The correct procedure to extract the file on a Linux machine is:

tar xzf GeekoCFD.×86_64-5.0.0.vmx.tar.gz

If you use Windows, what software do you use to extract the tar.gz archive?

Louis FaradayLouis Faraday,

Here is the error message on the Linux system:

gzip: stdin: unexpected end of file
tar: Unexpected EOF in archive
tar: Error is not recoverable: exiting now

I’ve also tried to extract it on Win7 with IZArc and 7zip but there is also an error.

I’ve downloaded the file again with Firefox and it’s working now. Previously I downloaded it with Chrome, so maybe there was only a problem with the browser during the download process?!

Juan A. Damia TJuan A. Damia T,

Hello Prof. Passalacqua. I am grateful for sharing your work with us. Which is your recommendation for the minimum size of a suitable pen drive for the current version of GeekoCFD? Thank you.

Alberto PassalacquaAlberto Passalacqua,

GeekoCFD disk image, once extracted, occupies about 14GB. I would then recommend at least 16GB, so that you have some space to store data.

Jose ReyJose Rey,

Hi Alberto, can I request the addition of Helyx-OS and discretizer. Thank you.

Alberto PassalacquaAlberto Passalacqua,

Thank you for your comment Jose. Do you know if these two tools are packaged for openSUSE? Discretizer seems to provide only source code, which would mean I have to build it myself and maintain it. Helyx-OS is based on java, so things are easier there.

Jose ReyJose Rey,

Alberto, I use discretizer under windows, because those are the only binaries I could find:

Alberto PassalacquaAlberto Passalacqua,

Thank you! I included HelyxOS in GeekoCFD 5.0.0. Discretizer is not there though.

Fausto A. A. BarbutoFausto A. A. Barbuto,

I wonder if the next version(s) of GeekoCFD couldn’t come with FiPy ( pre-installed… That would be great.

Alberto PassalacquaAlberto Passalacqua,

Yes, I can certainly add it. In the meanwhile, you can add it to any of the images for writable meadia using this 1-click installation (the latest GeekoCFD is based on openSUSE 12.2 and can use all its repositories):

Thank you for your suggestion!

riyaz ismailriyaz ismail,

Thank you for creating GeekoCFD, it really saves time and everything works very nicely out of the box :).

Mert TürkolMert Türkol,

Hi! How much disk space would you recommend for this installation? (including margins that will be used in the future after installation of the OS)

Alberto PassalacquaAlberto Passalacqua,

It depends on the use-case. If you install on a removable drive, the image will automatically expand to fill the drive. I would recommend to have some GB of free space so that you can actually run cases (I assume they are not very large, if you use a pen-drive).

If you are installing on a desktop system, I would consider 15-20GB for the / partition, to which you should add the space for your data (/home directory), which I typically keep as large as possible :-)

Mert TürkolMert Türkol,

Thank you. But I encountered a problem while trying to install it via vmware player. Player says that the boot file is configured for 64-bit and will not allow me to run 64-bit guests on this host. However I’m 100% sure that my laptop is 64-bit compatible. Do you have any idea/recommendation for this?

Alberto PassalacquaAlberto Passalacqua,

You need to enable the options for virtualization (Intel VT-x or AMD-V depending on the CPU) in the BIOS (if available), in order to be able to virtualize a 64-bit operating system.


Is it possible to run this in Amazon’s EC2? Does this distro have some sort of X11 server? Thanks.

Alberto PassalacquaAlberto Passalacqua,

GeekoCFD Text Mode version 3.1.0 has an EC2 image.

Currently EC2 images are not available for GeekoCFD and GeekoCFD Text Mode 4.×.

Truth TTruth T,

please, how can I run or instal the the above media on my Linux system SUSE 12.1

please, help me

Alberto PassalacquaAlberto Passalacqua,

GeekoCFD is a complete Linux distribution based on openSUSE 12.1. If you install GeekoCFD, you will have a default openSUSE 12.1 installation, with the additional packages included in GeekoCFD.
Just download the appropriate medium for your use case, and boot from it. You will see that the installation procedure is very similar to the one of an openSUSE Live CD.

Alberto PassalacquaAlberto Passalacqua,

Hi Lazlow,

the preload ISO is identical to the “USB & Disk image”, but it provides a graphical installer to transfer it to the destination hard-drive. You find more information here:

In short: burn the image to a pendrive (see instructions in the USB & Disk image section), and then boot from that image. The installer should start. Please remember that it will overwrite the whole destination hard-drive.

Best regards,

Lazlow MillerLazlow Miller,

Hi Alberto,
sorry I do not get it…The install option does not come up there are only two options: geekoCFD and failsafe-GeekoCFD.
Shouldn’t I just use the “sudo dd if=/home/suse/myappliance.raw of=/dev/sdb bs=4k conv=fdatasync” command to install your appliance on a hard disk just as I wrote it on a USB stick? Will it erase the whole HDD even if I install it (with the dd command) to only a partition of a disk (eg. sda3)? Will it leave sda1 and sda2 partitions as they are? Does it require swap partition?

Alberto PassalacquaAlberto Passalacqua,

I would suggest you to install from a live-cd if you want to target a specific partition.

Lazlow MillerLazlow Miller,

thanks I could try this from Preload ISO. What should I do to install it to my hard disk?
“Useful for performing automated system installs/preloads.” but how to do a system install?
Thanks in advance!

Alberto PassalacquaAlberto Passalacqua,

The new 1.0.6 release :

  • provides an improve installation process, with automatic check of the minimum space requirements for root’s partition.

*allows overlayed applications (OpenFOAM, gmsh, eclipse, …) to be accessed directly from their terminal for all new users created using system tools (YaST).

  • Fixes a bug with Java virtual machine.
  • Includes the updated—0.1 kernel, with important fixes for the ACPI subsystem, and an updated version of SUN Java VM.
Shi JieShi Jie,


Alberto PassalacquaAlberto Passalacqua,

Hi Peter,

if you try the images, any feedback or report about problems you encounter is welcome :-)


Peter FrancisPeter Francis,

Thanks Alberto ,
Looking forward to getting to grips with OpenFoam

James MasonJames Mason,

Glad to see you finally got this going!

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