Setup FlatPress CMS on Ubuntu 16.04 / 18.04 with Nginx and PHP 7.2-FPM

For those who want to run FlatPress CMS on Ubuntu with Nginx and PHP 7.2-FPM, the steps below should help… Our previous tutorial showed you how to run FlatPress with Apache2… this shows you how to get it working on Nginx instead…

FlatPress is a flat-file content management system (CMS) based on PHP that is easy to install and setup… No database, just PHP — plain and simple!

If you are looking for a solution to edit your website live and with ease and don’t want to fiddle with SQL, then FlatPress is a great place to start…. It comes with easy plugin system, widget support and easy backup because there’s only one directory…

This CMS platform is designed for ease of use to allow webmasters to collaborate and automate engaging experiences with users across multiple devices, including mobile…

For more about FlatPress, please check their Homepage

This brief tutorial is going to show students and new users how to install FlatPress CMS on Ubuntu 16.04 and 18.04 LTS…

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

Step 1: Install Nginx HTTP Server

FlatPress requires a web server and Nginx HTTP server is probably the second most popular open source web server available today… To install Nginx server, run the commands below:

sudo apt update
sudo apt install nginx

After installing Nginx, 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 PHP 7.2-FPM and Related Modules

FlatPress 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 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
memory_limit = 256M
cgi.fix_pathinfo = 0
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

Now that PHP is installed, to test whether it’s functioning, create a test file called¬†phpinfo.php in Nginx default root directory…. ( /var/www/html/)

sudo nano /var/www/html/phpinfo.php

Then type the content below and save the file.

<?php phpinfo( ); ?>

Next, open your browser and browse to the server’s hostname or IP address followed by phpinfo.php

http://localhost/phpinfo.php

You should see PHP default test page…

PHP Test Page

Step 3: Download FlatPress Latest Release

After installing the server and packages above, go do FlatPress download page and get the latest… Or use the commands below to download version 1.1 from its Github site…

cd /tmp
wget https://github.com/flatpressblog/flatpress/archive/1.1.zip
unzip 1.1.zip
sudo mv flatpress-1.1 /var/www/html/flatpress

Then run the commands below to set the correct permissions for FlatPress root directory and give Nginx control….

sudo chown -R www-data:www-data /var/www/html/flatpress/
sudo chmod -R 755 /var/www/html/flatpress/

Step 4: Configure Nginx

Finally, configure Apahce2 site configuration file for FlatPress. This file will control how users access FlatPress content. Run the commands below to create a new configuration file called flatpress

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

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/flatpress;
    index  index.php index.html index.htm;
    server_name  example.com www.example.com;

    client_max_body_size 100M;

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

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

     location ^~ /data {
         deny all;
      }
}

Save the file and exit.

Step 5: Enable the FlatPress and Rewrite Module

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

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

Then open your browser and browse to the server domain name. You should see FlatPress setup wizard to complete. Please follow the wizard carefully.

http://example.com/

Then follow the on-screen instruction…

FlatPress Ubuntu install

Since no database, just create an admin account and continue..

FlatPress Ubuntu install

After that, the site should be created and ready to use..

FlatPress Ubuntu install

Enjoy~

Congratulation! You have successfully installed FlatPress CMS on Ubuntu 16.04 / 18.04 and 18.10….

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