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Debian / Ubuntu and derivatives

This documentation is appropriate for Debian 10 (Buster) and Ubuntu 18.04 LTS.


We advise to make sure your webserver is secure enough. For instance you can require authentication through SSH keys and not passwords, install Fail2Ban to block repeated login attempts and block unused ports by installing and configuring a firewall.

Basic tools

We begin by making sure some basic tools are installed:

sudo apt install curl unzip vim openssl make git

Web server

We only officially support nginx.

sudo apt install nginx

HTTPS Certificates

Then we need to install certbot, a tool to ask for free Let's Encrypt HTTPS certificates.

sudo apt install certbot

You can use certbot with web server plugins or manually. See Certbot's documentation.


We install the latest NodeJS version by adding NodeSource repos and installing NodeJS:

Head over to this page and follow the instructions for Node.js v12.x.

!!! info Unless stated otherwise, Mobilizon always supports only the latest LTS version of NodeJS.

!!! tip NodeSource repos only gives updates for a specific version of NodeJS (it doesn't upgrade itself to a new major version). When a new major version of NodeJS is released, you need to remove the old repo and add the new one.


Mobilizon uses Yarn to manage NodeJS packages, so we need to install it as well.

Follow the instructions on this page to add Yarn's repository and install it.

!!! info It is also possible to install yarn directly with npm: bash npm install -g yarn . You need to make sure npm's binary packages folder in your $PATH afterwards to use yarn.

Erlang and Elixir

The packages from Debian or Ubuntu are badly packaged and often out of date, so we need to add one final source repository.

Follow the instructions for Ubuntu/Debian on this page to add Erlang Solutions repo and install Erlang and Elixir.

!!! tip The Erlang package also wants to install an add-on for Emacs for some reason (but it doesn't install Emacs). If you see a warning, nothing to worry about.

PostgreSQL and PostGIS

Mobilizon uses the PostgreSQL database, and the PostgreSQL Postgis extension to store geographical data into PostgreSQL.

sudo apt install postgresql postgresql-contrib postgis

After that we can enable and start the PostgreSQL service.

sudo systemctl --now enable postgresql


We need the following tools to handle and optimize pictures that are uploaded on Mobilizon.

sudo apt install imagemagick

The following packages are optional, Mobilizon can run without them.

sudo apt install webp gifsicle jpegoptim optipng pngquant

Once finished, let's head back to the install guide.

Arch Linux

Run the following command to install all at once:

sudo pacman -S nodejs postgresql openssl git wget unzip base-devel yarn nginx elixir postgis imagemagick

Now that dependencies are installed, before running Mobilizon you should start PostgreSQL:

sudo systemctl --now enable postgresql

Once finished, let's head back to the install guide.

Other distributions

Feel free to update this file in a pull request!