Setup eduTrac SIS LMS on Ubuntu 18.04 | 16.04 with Nginx

This brief tutorial shows students and new users how to install and configure eduTrac SIS Learning Management System (LMS) on Ubuntu with Nginx HTTP Server..

Our previous tutorial showed you how to install eduTrac LMS on Ubuntu with Apache2 which you can get from here.

eduTrac is an open source, student information system that helps you build and manage online courses for students, teachers and anyone who wants to build their own online courses…

eduTrac comes with support for collaboration, communication and built-in modules for grade book, time sheet, financial and more, packaged with popular web tools like PHP, MySQL, JQuery…

This LMS is robust and mobile-friendly and responsive out-of-the-box so your students and teachers can enjoy reading and interacting with your portal from any device..

eduTrac comes with an intuitive and powerful backend that will get you started right away with solution for large businesses, universities, schools to create tailored, individual learning scenarios very easily…

If you are looking for a solution to to build and manage you own courses for your school or business without the need for any coding skills, then eduTrac is a great place to start…

For more about eduTrac, please check their Homepage

To get started with installing eduTrac, follow the steps below:

Step 1: Install Nginx HTTP Server

You will need a web server to run eduTrac and Nginx HTTP server is probably the second most popular open source web server available today… So go and get it for eduTrac…

To install Nginx server, run the commands below:

sudo apt update
sudo apt install nginx

After installing Nginx webserver, the commands below can be used to stop, start and enable Nginx service to always start up with the server boots…

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

Now that Nginx is installed…. to test whether the web server is working, open your browser and browse to the URL below…

http://localhost

nginx default home page test

If you see the page above, then Nginx is successfully installed…

Step 2: Install MariaDB Database Server

eduTrac also needs a database server to store its content… and MariaDB database server is a great place to start when looking at open source database servers to use with eduTrac…

To install MariaDB run the commands below…

sudo apt-get install mariadb-server mariadb-client

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

Run these on Ubuntu

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 by creating a root password and disallowing remote root access.

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: Enter 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

Restart MariaDB server

To test if MariaDB is installed, type the commands below to logon to MariaDB server

sudo mysql -u root -p

Then type the password you created above to sign on… if successful, you should see MariaDB welcome message

Step 3: Install PHP 7.2-FPM and Related Modules

eduTrac is a PHP based CMS and PHP is required… However, PHP 7.2-FPM may not be available in Ubuntu default repositories… To run PHP 7.2-FPM on Ubuntu 16.04 and previous, you may need to run the commands below:

sudo apt-get install software-properties-common
sudo add-apt-repository ppa:ondrej/php

Then update and upgrade to PHP 7.2-FPM

sudo apt update

Next, run the commands below to install PHP 7.2-FPM and related modules.

sudo apt install php7.2-fpm php7.2-common php7.2-sqlite3 php7.2-mysql php7.2-gmp php7.2-curl php7.2-intl php7.2-mbstring php7.2-xmlrpc php7.2-gd php7.2-bcmath php7.2-xml php7.2-cli php7.2-zip

After installing PHP 7.2, run the commands below to open PHP default configuration file for Nginx…

sudo nano /etc/php/7.2/fpm/php.ini

The lines below is a good settings for most PHP based CMS… Update the configuration file with these and save….

file_uploads = On
allow_url_fopen = On
short_open_tag = On
cgi.fix_pathinfo = 0
memory_limit = 256M
upload_max_filesize = 100M
max_execution_time = 360
date.timezone = America/Chicago

Everytime you make changes to PHP configuration file, you should also restart Nginx web server… To do so, run the commands below:

sudo systemctl restart nginx.service

Step 4: eduTrac Database

Now that you’ve install all the packages that are required, continue below to start configuring the servers. First create a eduTrac database.

Run the commands below to logon to MariaDB. When prompted for a password, type the root password you created above.

sudo mysql -u root -p

Then create a database called edutrac

CREATE DATABASE edutrac CHARACTER SET utf8 COLLATE utf8_general_ci;

Create a database user called edutracuser with new password

CREATE USER 'edutracuser'@'localhost' IDENTIFIED BY 'new_password_here';

Then grant the user full access to the edutrac database.

GRANT ALL ON edutrac.* TO 'edutracuser'@'localhost' WITH GRANT OPTION;

Finally, save your changes and exit.

FLUSH PRIVILEGES;
EXIT;

Step 5: Download eduTrac Latest Release

After installing the server and packages above,  go and get the latest copy of eduTrac from its download site..

After downloading, use the commands below to extract the archived content into Nginx root directory…

cd /var/www/
sudo apt install git
sudo git clone -b develop https://github.com/parkerj/eduTrac-SIS.git edutrac

After downloading, run the commands below to create a phinx.php file and edit the database details you created above… Your phinx.php file should look similar to below once you’ve edited it:

defined('DB_HOST') or define('DB_HOST', '127.0.0.1'); // Usually localhost or 127.0.0.1.
defined('DB_NAME') or define('DB_NAME', ''); // Database name.
defined('DB_USER') or define('DB_USER', ''); // Database username.
defined('DB_PASS') or define('DB_PASS', ''); // Database password.
defined('DB_PORT') or define('DB_PORT', 3306); // Database port.

Run the command below to create the file from its sample file..

sudo cp /var/www/edutrac/phinx.sample.php /var/www/edutrac/phinx.php

Then open the phinx.php file and edit the highlighted lines and save..

sudo nano /var/www/edutrac/phinx.php

Make the highlighted changes below

/**
 * If you are installing on a development server such
 * as WAMP, MAMP, XAMPP or AMPPS, you might need to
 * set DB_HOST to 127.0.0.1 instead of localhost.
 */
defined('DB_HOST') or define('DB_HOST', 'localhost'); // MySQL server host.
defined('DB_NAME') or define('DB_NAME', 'edutrac'); // Database name.
defined('DB_USER') or define('DB_USER', 'edutracuser'); // Database username.
defined('DB_PASS') or define('DB_PASS', 'database_password_here'); // Database password.
defined('DB_PORT') or define('DB_PORT', 3306); // Database port.

After that, run the commands below from inside the edutrac folder to complete..

sudo ./etsis core migrate

You should see similar messages as below:

Phinx by CakePHP - https://phinx.org. 0.8.1

using config file ./phinx.php
using config parser php
using migration paths 
 - /var/www/edutrac/app/migrations
using environment production
using adapter mysql
using database edutrac

 == 20160916002812 InitialSchema: migrating
 == 20160916002812 InitialSchema: migrated 1.3309s

 == 20160916035404 CurrencyTable: migrating
 == 20160916035404 CurrencyTable: migrated 0.0661s

 == 20170706151405 DbSchemaUpdate: migrating
 == 20170706151405 DbSchemaUpdate: migrated 0.0012s

 == 20170718142604 FixFields: migrating
 == 20170718142604 FixFields: migrated 0.1858s

 == 20170719105649 VirtualStac: migrating
 == 20170719105649 VirtualStac: migrated 0.0037s

 == 20171011121135 NotNull: migrating
 == 20171011121135 NotNull: migrated 0.0203s

All Done. Took 1.6338s

When you’re done, run the commands below to set the correct permissions for eduTrac root directory and give Nginx control….

sudo chown -R www-data:www-data /var/www/edutrac/
sudo chmod -R 755 /var/www/edutrac/

Step 6: Configure Nginx

Finally, configure Apahce2 site configuration file for eduTrac. This file will control how users access eduTrac

content. Run the commands below to create a new configuration file called edutrac

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

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;

    server_name  example.com www.example.com;
    root   /var/www/xavoc;
    index  index.php;
    
    access_log /var/log/nginx/example.com.access.log;
    error_log /var/log/nginx/example.com.error.log;

    client_max_body_size 100M;
  
    autoindex off;

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

    location ~ \.php$ {
         include snippets/fastcgi-php.conf;
         fastcgi_pass unix:/var/run/php/php7.2-fpm.sock;
         include fastcgi_params;
         fastcgi_intercept_errors on;
    }
}

Save the file and exit.

Step 7: Enable the eduTrac

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

sudo ln -s /etc/nginx/sites-available/edutrac /etc/nginx/sites-enabled/
sudo systemctl restart nginx.service

Then open your browser and browse to the server domain name, followed by login to sign in..

http://example.com/login

eduTrac Ubuntu install

Username: etsis
Password: edutracsis

Login and begin building your courses

eduTrac Ubuntu setup

Congratulation! You have successfully installed eduTrac LMS on Ubuntu 16.04 | 18.04

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