Install Nginx, MariaDB and PHP-FPM (LEMP) on Ubuntu 17.10

Nginx, MariaDB, PHP-FPM (LEMP) is an alternative to LAMP. LEMP is an acronym for Linux, Nginx, MySQL  / MariaDB and PHP. It’s collection of opensource software that powers some of the most popular websites and applications online today.

This brief tutorial shows students and new users how to install LEMP on Ubuntu 17.10. This website is powered by LEMP. I run a Ubuntu server with Nginx, MariaDB and PHP-FPM installed. If you need to run a PHP-based website like WordPress, Drupal or Joomla, then LEMP or LAMP should be considered.

In the part Linux, Apache2, MySQL and PHP (LAMP) was the preferred choice to run dynamic PHP based applications and website. Now, LEMP is rapidly gaining traction because of Nginx HTTP server. Nginx is lightweight, robust, and powerful HTTP server that some of the busiest websites use. It can also serve as a reversed proxy.

To get LEMP installed on Ubuntu 17.10, follow the steps below:

Step 1: Update Ubuntu server

Update Ubuntu first before installing additional software and packages. This assumes that you have administrative (root) rights to the systems and can install packages from the command line. To update Ubuntu server, run the commands below:

sudo apt update && sudo apt dist-upgrade && sudo apt autoremove

Step 2: Install Nginx HTTP Server

After updating Ubuntu, run the commands below to install Nginx HTTP server.

sudo apt install nginx

After installing Nginx, the commands below can be used to stop, start, disable and enable Nginx service

sudo systemctl stop nginx.service
sudo systemctl start nginx.service
sudo systemctl disable nginx.service
sudo systemctl enable nginx.service

Step 3: Install MariaDB Database Server

MariaDB is a drop-in replacement for MySQL and the default opensource database server. To install MariaDB run the commands below

sudo apt install mariadb-server mariadb-client

After installing, the commands below can be used to stop, start and enable MariaDB service to always start up when the server boots.

sudo systemctl stop mariadb.service
sudo systemctl start mariadb.service
sudo systemctl enable mariadb.service

After that, run the commands below to secure MariaDB server.

sudo mysql_secure_installation

When prompted, answer the questions below by following the guide.

  • Enter current password for root (enter for none): Just press the Enter
  • Set root password? [Y/n]: Y
  • New password: Create password
  • Re-enter new password: Repeat password
  • Remove anonymous users? [Y/n]: Y
  • Disallow root login remotely? [Y/n]: Y
  • Remove test database and access to it? [Y/n]:  Y
  • Reload privilege tables now? [Y/n]:  Y

Continue below to install PHP-FPM and related PHP modules.

Step 4: Installing PHP-FPM on Ubuntu

The last step is to install PHP-FPM and other PHP modules on Ubuntu to get the LEMP stack complete.

To install PHP-FPM run the commands below:

sudo apt install php-fpm

For most PHP applications to function properly, you must also install related PHP modules. Run the commands below to get as much installed.

sudo apt install php-mbstring php-xmlrpc php-soap php-gd php-xml php-intl php-mysql php-cli php-mcrypt php-ldap php-zip php-curl

Step 5: Configure Nginx to use PHP-FPM

Now that LEMP is installed, open Nginx default configuration file and enable PHP-FPM configuration… To do that, run the commands below:

sudo nano /etc/nginx/sites-available/default

Then edit the highlighted lines below and save.

server {
	listen 80 default_server;
	listen [::]:80 default_server;
        ............
        ............

        index index.php index.html index.htm;

        # pass PHP scripts to FastCGI server
        #
        location ~ \.php$ {
        include snippets/fastcgi-php.conf;
        #
        # # With php-fpm (or other unix sockets):
        fastcgi_pass unix:/var/run/php/php7.1-fpm.sock;
       # # With php-cgi (or other tcp sockets):
       # fastcgi_pass 127.0.0.1:9000;
  }
  ..........

Congratulations! You’ve successfully installed LEMP!

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