This guide will walk you through a production installation of Baserow. Specifically this document aims to provide a walkthrough for servers running Ubuntu 18.04.03 LTS. These instructions have been tested with a clean install of Ubuntu 18.04.03 LTS and a user account with root access. Note that without root access, many of the instructions cannot be executed, so root access is necessary in almost all cases.
In order to make sure that we’re getting the correct and new versions of any packages we install, we need to update and upgrade our packages.
$ sudo apt update $ sudo apt upgrade -y
In order to serve web content you will need to open up the HTTP (and HTTPS) ports 80
(and 443). You can do this with a firewall -
ufw might be good place to start if you
are new to firewalls.
Baserow uses PostgreSQL in order to store its user data. You can install PostgreSQL with the following commands:
$ sudo apt install postgresql postgresql-contrib -y # Make sure you replace 'yourpassword' below with a secure password for your database # user. $ sudo -u postgres psql << EOF create database baserow; create user baserow with encrypted password 'yourpassword'; grant all privileges on database baserow to baserow; EOF
Make sure that you use a secure password instead of
yourpassword! Also take care that
you use the password you’ve chosen in any upcoming commands that need the PostgreSQL
baserow user password.
Baserow uses Redis for asynchronous tasks and the real time collaboration. You can install Redis with the following commands.
$ sudo add-apt-repository ppa:chris-lea/redis-server $ sudo apt update $ sudo apt install redis-server -y $ sudo sed -i 's/supervised no/supervised systemd/g' /etc/redis/redis.conf $ sudo systemctl enable --now redis-server $ sudo systemctl restart redis.service
Redis is not publicly accessible by default, so there is no need to setup a password.
Git is required to download the source code of Baserow so you can install it in the following section. Curl will be required later in the guide to install nodejs. Install them both using the following command:
$ sudo apt install git curl -y
In this section, we will install Baserow itself. We will need a new user called
baserow. Baserow uses the
/baserow directory for storing the application itself.
# Create baserow user $ sudo useradd baserow $ sudo passwd baserow # Enter new UNIX password: yourpassword # Retype new UNIX password: yourpassword # Change to root user $ sudo -i # Clone the baserow project $ mkdir /baserow $ cd /baserow $ git clone --branch master https://gitlab.com/bramw/baserow.git
The password used for the
baserow user does not have to be the same as the one used
with PostgreSQL. Just make sure that you use a secure password and that you remember
it for when you need it later.
In order to use the Baserow application, we will need to create a media directory for the uploaded user files, a virtual environment and install some more dependencies like: NodeJS, Yarn, Python 3.7.
First, if you are on Ubuntu version 20.04 or later you will need add the following repository to then be able to install Python 3.7:
add-apt-repository ppa:deadsnakes/ppa apt-get update
Next follow these steps:
# Create uploaded user files and media directory $ mkdir media $ chmod 0755 media # Install python3.7, pip & virtualenv $ apt install python3.7 python3.7-dev python3-pip virtualenv libpq-dev libmysqlclient-dev -y # Create virtual environment $ virtualenv -p python3.7 env # Activate the virtual environment $ source env/bin/activate # Install backend dependencies through pip $ pip3 install -e ./baserow/backend # Deactivate the virtual environment $ deactivate # Install NodeJS $ curl -sL https://deb.nodesource.com/setup_12.x | sudo -E bash - $ apt install nodejs -y # Install yarn $ curl -sS https://dl.yarnpkg.com/debian/pubkey.gpg | sudo apt-key add - $ echo "deb https://dl.yarnpkg.com/debian/ stable main" | sudo tee /etc/apt/sources.list.d/yarn.list $ apt update $ apt install yarn -y # Install frontend dependencies through yarn $ cd baserow/web-frontend $ yarn install # Build frontend $ ./node_modules/nuxt/bin/nuxt.js build --config-file config/nuxt.config.local.js
Baserow uses NGINX as a reverse proxy for its frontend and backend. Through that, you can easily add SSL Certificates and add more applications to your server if you want to.
# Go back to baserow root directory $ cd /baserow # Install & Start NGINX $ apt install nginx -y $ service nginx start
If you’re unfamiliar with NGINX: NGINX uses so called “virtualhosts” to direct web
traffic from outside your network to the correct application on your server. These
virtual hosts are defined in
.conf files which are put into the
/etc/nginx/sites-enabled/ directory where NGINX will then process them on startup.
Baserow comes with two configuration files for NGINX. After moving these over, change
server_name value in both of the files. The server name is the domain under
which you want Baserow to be reachable.
Make sure that in the following commands you replace
api.domain.com with your own
backend domain, that you replace
baserow.domain.com with your frontend domain and
media.baserow.com with your domain to serve the user files.
# Move virtualhost files to /etc/nginx/sites-enabled/ $ cp baserow/docs/guides/installation/configuration-files/nginx.conf /etc/nginx/sites-enabled/baserow.conf $ rm /etc/nginx/sites-enabled/default # Change the server_name values $ sed -i 's/\*YOUR_BACKEND_DOMAIN\*/api.domain.com/g' /etc/nginx/sites-enabled/baserow.conf $ sed -i 's/\*YOUR_WEB_FRONTEND_DOMAIN\*/baserow.domain.com/g' /etc/nginx/sites-enabled/baserow.conf $ sed -i 's/\*YOUR_MEDIA_DOMAIN\*/media.domain.com/g' /etc/nginx/sites-enabled/baserow.conf # Then restart nginx so that it processes the configuration files $ service nginx restart
In the “Install & Setup PostgreSQL” Section, we created a database called
for the application. Since we didn’t do anything with that database it is still empty,
which will result in a non-working application since Baserow expects certain tables
and relations to exist in that database. You can create these with the following
# Prepare for creating the database schema $ source env/bin/activate $ export DJANGO_SETTINGS_MODULE='baserow.config.settings.base' $ export DATABASE_PASSWORD='yourpassword' $ export DATABASE_HOST='localhost' # Create database schema $ baserow migrate # Sync the template files with the database $ baserow sync_templates $ deactivate
Baserow sends invite and password reset emails to users. To do this it uses a technology called MJML which generates the email bodies from a template. For email sending to work in Baserow you will need to install and set up an MJML server by following the steps below:
$ mkdir mjml_install $ cd mjml_install $ npm init -y && npm install mjml $ cd /baserow
You will then later on need to set the environment variables discussed in the Email SMTP configuration section to get Baserow sending emails.
Supervisor is an application that starts and keeps track of processes and will restart them if the process finishes. For Baserow this is used to reduce downtime and in order to restart the application in the unlikely event of an unforeseen termination. You can install and configure it with these commands:
# Install supervisor $ apt install supervisor -y # Create folder for baserow logs $ mkdir /var/log/baserow/ # Move configuration files $ cd /baserow $ cp baserow/docs/guides/installation/configuration-files/supervisor.conf /etc/supervisor/conf.d/baserow.conf
You will need to edit the
baserow.conf file (located now at
/etc/supervisor/conf.d/) in order to set the necessary environment
variables. You will need to change at least the following variables which can be found
environment= section. Ensure these URL variables start with http:// or https://
PUBLIC_WEB_FRONTEND_URL: The URL under which your frontend can be reached from the internet.
PUBLIC_BACKEND_URL: The URL under which your backend can be reached from the internet.
MEDIA_URL: The URL under which your media files can be reached from the internet.
You can make the modifications using sed like so:
$ sed -i 's/\*YOUR_BACKEND_DOMAIN\*/https:\/\/api.domain.com/g' /etc/supervisor/conf.d/baserow.conf $ sed -i 's/\*YOUR_WEB_FRONTEND_DOMAIN\*/https:\/\/baserow.domain.com/g' /etc/supervisor/conf.d/baserow.conf $ sed -i 's/\*YOUR_MEDIA_DOMAIN\*/https:\/\/media.domain.com/g' /etc/supervisor/conf.d/baserow.conf
SECRET_KEY: The secret key that is used to generate tokens and other random strings. You can generate one with the following commands:
$ cat /dev/urandom | tr -dc 'a-zA-Z0-9' | fold -w 80 | head -n 1
DATABASE_PASSWORD: The password of the
DATABASE_HOST: The host computer that runs the database (usually
REDIS_HOST: The host computer that runs the caching server (usually
Email SMTP configuration
If you want to configure Baserow to send emails you will have to add the following
environment variables to the
/etc/supervisor/conf.d/baserow.conf environment block.
Otherwise, by default Baserow will not send emails and instead just log them in
EMAIL_SMTP(default ``): Providing anything other than an empty string will enable SMTP email.
localhost): The hostname of the SMTP server.
EMAIL_SMTP_USE_TLS(default ``): Providing anything other than an empty string will enable connecting to the SMTP server via TLS.
25): The port of the SMTP server.
EMAIL_SMTP_USER(default ``): The username for the SMTP server.
EMAIL_SMTP_PASSWORD(default ``): The password of the SMTP server.
no-reply@localhost): The ‘from’ email address of the emails that the platform sends. Like when a user requests a password recovery.
After modifying these files you need to make supervisor reread the files and apply the changes.
# Stop NGINX service so that supervisor can take over $ service nginx stop # Read the newly added files $ supervisorctl reread # Apply the read changes $ supervisorctl update # Check if the startup worked correctly $ supervisorctl status
reread or the
update commands fail, try checking the logs at
/var/log/baserow/ - it is possible that another process is listening to one of the
ports which would terminate NGINX, or parts of Baserow.
Since you’re probably serving private data with Baserow, we strongly encourage to use a SSL certificate to encrypt the traffic between the browser and your server. You can do that with the following commands. We will do that with certbot, which retrieves a SSL certificate from the LetsEncrypt Certificate Authority.
If you’re not installing Baserow on a completely new server, you might need to remove
certbot binaries from your machine. Consult the
certbot installation instructions
for more information.
# Install certbot $ sudo snap install core; sudo snap refresh core $ sudo snap install --classic certbot # Make certbot command available $ sudo ln -s /snap/bin/certbot /usr/bin/certbot # Start the certificate retrieval process $ sudo certbot --nginx # Restart nginx so that it reads the configuration created by certbot $ supervisorctl restart nginx
You now have a full installation of Baserow, which will keep the Front- & Backend running even if there is an unforeseen termination of them.
If you already have Baserow installed on your server and you want to update to the latest version then you can execute the following commands. This only works if there aren’t any additional instructions in the previous release blog posts.
Follow these steps if you installed after June first 2021:
$ cd /baserow/baserow $ git pull $ cd /baserow $ source env/bin/activate $ pip3 install -e ./baserow/backend $ export DJANGO_SETTINGS_MODULE='baserow.config.settings.base' $ export DATABASE_PASSWORD='yourpassword' $ export DATABASE_HOST='localhost' $ baserow migrate $ baserow sync_templates $ deactivate $ cd baserow/web-frontend $ yarn install $ ./node_modules/nuxt/bin/nuxt.js build --config-file config/nuxt.config.local.js $ supervisorctl reread $ supervisorctl update $ supervisorctl restart all
Follow these steps if you installed before June first 2021.
$ cd /baserow $ git pull $ source backend/env/bin/activate $ pip3 install -e ./backend $ export DJANGO_SETTINGS_MODULE='baserow.config.settings.base' $ export DATABASE_PASSWORD='yourpassword' $ export DATABASE_HOST='localhost' $ baserow migrate $ baserow sync_templates $ deactivate $ cd web-frontend $ yarn install $ ./node_modules/nuxt/bin/nuxt.js build --config-file config/nuxt.config.local.js $ supervisorctl reread $ supervisorctl update $ supervisorctl restart all