I have arch running on my desktop and I'm trying to play music with mpd using ncmpcpp. They are both up and running, but the problem is when I open ncmpcpp it doesn't show my music. I copied the music to /var/lib/mpd/music under recommendation from the arch wiki and gave it access using these commands:

# mkdir /var/lib/mpd/music
# echo "/home/cam/Music /var/lib/mpd/music none bind" >> /etc/fstab
# mount -a

I have changed the music directory in /etc/mpd.conf, ~/.mpd/mpd.conf, and ~/.ncmpcpp/config to reflect the music being at /var/lib/mpd/music. I'm posting here because I feel like the arch forums would not be so kind to this type of simple error.

  • Unless you know what you are doing, just run mpd as your user (and place all of the files, including your music) under /home... If you insist doing the way you have started, you'll need to ensure that all your permissions are correct.
    – jasonwryan
    Commented Sep 15, 2014 at 7:59
  • @jasonwryan that is what I did first, I had the music under /home/cam/Music and I was getting the same problem. I know i can use sudo chown -R ... /var/lib/mpd/music to grant permissions but what would go after -R, cam or mpd or ...?
    – Cam Jones
    Commented Sep 15, 2014 at 8:03
  • Go back and follow the wiki methodically: it is guaranteed to work for the user setup. Or use Rasi's script.
    – jasonwryan
    Commented Sep 15, 2014 at 8:07
  • @jasonwryan, trust me I have been. I have been trying to do this for multiple hours, for multiple days and I'm befuddled. when trying to grant permissions should i be using my name or mpd as the user?
    – Cam Jones
    Commented Sep 15, 2014 at 8:10
  • Use the script. Seriously. You are too far gone now to think your way out of it. You are just going to fsck it up even more.
    – jasonwryan
    Commented Sep 15, 2014 at 8:12

1 Answer 1


First check if your assumption is true. Set loglevel to "verbose" and restart mpd. The logs will tell you. Set the log to "syslog" and follow the syslog with tail this will give you a glance on the interaction with pulse/alsa and more flexibility in troubleshooting.

Possible reasons:

  • Auto scan is not set. Update the database from within ncmpcpp.
  • MPD has no access. Run mpd as your user or grant mpd access to your files either by full access to the path or by granting group access and add mpd to your group. Or... There are some ways to share files.
  • Unfolled symlinks...

Check the manpage

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