Install Ubuntu 17.04 | 17.10, Nginx, MariaDB, PHP with Let’s Encrypt (LEMP + Let’s Encrypt)

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

LEMP with Let’s Encrypt free SSL/TLS certificates is becoming the standard implementation for websites and blogs today.

This brief tutorial shows students and new users how to install LEMP on Ubuntu 17.04 | 17.10 with Let’s Encrypt free SSL/TLS certificates. This blog uses LEMP + Let’s Encrypt free SSL/TLS certificates. If you need to run a PHP-based website like WordPress, Drupal or Joomla, then LEMP or LAMP + Let’s Encrypt SSL/TLS certificates should be considered.

To get LEMP installed on Ubuntu 17.04 | 17.10 with Let’s Encrypt, follow the steps below:

Step 1: Update Ubuntu server

To get started, update Ubuntu first by running the commands below. 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 many 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

Congratulations! You’ve successfully installed LEMP!

Step 5: Create A Nginx Website for Example.com

Now that LEMP is installed, go and configure a website to use with LEMP + Let’s Encrypt. Run the commands below to create a new configuration file called example

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

Then copy and paste the content below into the file and save it. Replace the highlighted line with your own domain name and directory root location.

server {
    listen 80;
    listen [::]:80;
    root /var/www/html/example.com;
    index  index.php index.html index.htm;
    server_name  example.com www.example.com;

    location / {
    try_files $uri $uri/ /index.php?$args;        
    }

    location ~ \.php$ {
    fastcgi_split_path_info  ^(.+\.php)(/.+)$;
    fastcgi_index            index.php;
    fastcgi_pass             unix:/var/run/php/php7.1-fpm.sock; #Ubuntu 17.10
  # fastcgi_pass             unix:/var/run/php/php7.0-fpm.sock; #Ubuntu 17.04
    include                  fastcgi_params;
    fastcgi_param   PATH_INFO       $fastcgi_path_info;
    fastcgi_param   SCRIPT_FILENAME $document_root$fastcgi_script_name;
    }

}

Save the file and exit.

Step 6: Enable the WordPress Site

After configuring the VirtualHost above, enable it by running the commands below

sudo ln -s /etc/nginx/sites-available/example /etc/nginx/sites-enabled/

Step 7 : Restart Nginx

To load all the settings above, restart Nginx by running the commands below.

sudo systemctl restart nginx.service

Step 8: Obtain and Configure Let’s Encrypt SSL Certificates

Now that LEMP is installed, continue below to get Let’s Encrypt installed and configured. Let’s Encrypt now provides a Nginx client to automate this process. To get the client installed on Ubuntu, run the commands below

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:certbot/certbot
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install python-certbot-nginx

After that run the commands below to obtain your free Let’s Encrypt SSL/TLS certificate for the domain example.com

sudo certbot --nginx -d example.com -d www.example.com

After running the above commands, you should get prompted to enter your email and accept the licensing terms. If everything is checked, the client should automatically install the free SSL/TLS certificate and configure the Nginx site to use the certs.

Please read the Terms of Service at
https://letsencrypt.org/documents/LE-SA-v1.2-November-15-2017.pdf. You must
agree in order to register with the ACME server at
https://acme-v01.api.letsencrypt.org/directory
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
(A)gree/(C)ancel: A

Choose Yes ( Y ) to share your email address

Would you be willing to share your email address with the Electronic Frontier
Foundation, a founding partner of the Let's Encrypt project and the non-profit
organization that develops Certbot? We'd like to send you email about EFF and
our work to encrypt the web, protect its users and defend digital rights.
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
(Y)es/(N)o: Y

This is how easy is it to obtain your free SSL/TLS certificate for your Nginx powered website.

Please choose whether or not to redirect HTTP traffic to HTTPS, removing HTTP access.
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
1: No redirect - Make no further changes to the webserver configuration.
2: Redirect - Make all requests redirect to secure HTTPS access. Choose this for
new sites, or if you're confident your site works on HTTPS. You can undo this
change by editing your web server's configuration.
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Select the appropriate number [1-2] then [enter] (press 'c' to cancel): 2

Pick option 2 to redirect all traffic over HTTPS. This is important!

After that, the SSL client should install the cert and configure your website to redirect all traffic over HTTPS.

Congratulations! You have successfully enabled https://example.com and
https://www.example.com

You should test your configuration at:
https://www.ssllabs.com/ssltest/analyze.html?d=example.com
https://www.ssllabs.com/ssltest/analyze.html?d=www.example.com
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------

IMPORTANT NOTES:
 - Congratulations! Your certificate and chain have been saved at:
   /etc/letsencrypt/live/example.com/fullchain.pem
   Your key file has been saved at:
   /etc/letsencrypt/live/example.com/privkey.pem
   Your cert will expire on 2018-02-24. To obtain a new or tweaked
   version of this certificate in the future, simply run certbot again
   with the "certonly" option. To non-interactively renew *all* of
   your certificates, run "certbot renew"
 - If you like Certbot, please consider supporting our work by:

   Donating to ISRG / Let's Encrypt:   https://letsencrypt.org/donate
   Donating to EFF:                    https://eff.org/donate-le

The highlighted code block should be added to your Nginx configuration file automatically by Let’s Encrypt certbot. Your site is ready to be used over HTTPS.

server {
    listen 80;
    listen [::]:80;
    root /var/www/html/example.com;
    index  index.php index.html index.htm;
    server_name  example.com www.example.com;
    location / {
    try_files $uri $uri/ /index.php?$args;
    }
    location ~ \.php$ {
    fastcgi_split_path_info  ^(.+\.php)(/.+)$;
    fastcgi_index            index.php;
    fastcgi_pass             unix:/var/run/php/php7.1-fpm.sock; #Ubuntu 17.10
  # fastcgi_pass             unix:/var/run/php/php7.0-fpm.sock; #Ubuntu 17.04
    include                  fastcgi_params;
    fastcgi_param   PATH_INFO       $fastcgi_path_info;
    fastcgi_param   SCRIPT_FILENAME $document_root$fastcgi_script_name;
    }
 
    listen 443 ssl; # managed by Certbot
    ssl_certificate /etc/letsencrypt/live/example.com/fullchain.pem; # managed by Certbot
    ssl_certificate_key /etc/letsencrypt/live/example.com/privkey.pem; # managed by Certbot
    include /etc/letsencrypt/options-ssl-nginx.conf; # managed by Certbot
    ssl_dhparam /etc/letsencrypt/ssl-dhparams.pem; # managed by Certbot

    if ($scheme != "https") {
        return 301 https://$host$request_uri;
    } # managed by Certbot

    # Redirect non-https traffic to https
    # if ($scheme != "https") {
    #     return 301 https://$host$request_uri;
    # } # managed by Certbot
}

After that, browse to your domain name and the site should respond over HTTPS.

ubuntu let's encrypt

Congratulations! You’ve successfully installed a LEMP site with Let’s Encrypt free SSL/TLS certificates.

To setup a process to automatically renew the certificates, add a cron job to execute the renewal process.

sudo crontab -e

Then add the line below and save.

0 1 * * * /usr/bin/certbot renew & > /dev/null

The cron job will attempt to renew 30 days before expiring

You may also like the post below:

Install WordPress on Ubuntu 17.04 / 17.10 with Nginx, MariaDB, PHP and Let’s Encrypt SSL

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