How to Install clearFusion CMS with Apache on Ubuntu Linux

This brief tutorial shows students and new users how to install and configure clearFusion CMS on Ubuntu 18.04 | 16.04 LTS servers.

clearFusion is a content management system (CMS) that is easy for both developers and user-friendly and gives you powerful tools to help you easily build and manage high-quality websites.

This CMS is robust and mobile-friendly and responsive out-of-the-box so your users can enjoy reading and interact with your website from any device.

clearFusion CMS comes with an intuitive and powerful backend that will get you started without knowing anything about coding in HTML or CSS. You also get a powerful search tool, backend analytics, drag n drop media panel, and more.

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 clearFusion, please check their Homepage

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

Install Apache2 HTTP Server

You will need a web server to run clearFusion and the Apache2 HTTP server is the most popular open-source web server available today. So go and get it for clearFusion.

To install the Apache2 server, run the commands below:

sudo apt update
sudo apt install apache2

After installing the Apache2 webserver, the commands below can be used to stop, start and enable the Apache2 service to always start up with the server boots.

sudo systemctl stop apache2.service
sudo systemctl start apache2.service
sudo systemctl enable apache2.service

Now that Apache2 is installed, open your browser and browse to the URL below to test whether the web server is working.

http://localhost
Apache2 Test Page

If you see the page above, then Apache2 is successfully installed.

Install MariaDB Database Server

clearFusion 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 with clearFusion.

To install MariaDB run the commands below.

sudo apt-get install mariadb-server mariadb-client

After installing MariaDB, the commands below can stop, start and enable the MariaDB service to 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 the 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 into the 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

Install PHP 7.2 and Related Modules

clearFusion is a PHP-based CMS and PHP is required. However, PHP 7.2 may not be available in Ubuntu’s default repositories. To run PHP 7.2 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

sudo apt update

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

sudo apt install php7.2 libapache2-mod-php7.2 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 the PHP default configuration file for Apache2.

sudo nano /etc/php/7.2/apache2/php.ini

The lines below are a good setting 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
upload_max_filesize = 100M
max_execution_time = 360
date.timezone = America/Chicago

Every time you make changes to the PHP configuration file, you should also restart the Apache2 web server. To do so, run the commands below:

sudo systemctl restart apache2.service

Once PHP is installed, create a test file called¬†phpinfo.php¬†in the Apache2 default root directory to test whether it’s functioning. ( /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 the PHP default test page.

PHP Test Page

Create clearFusion Database

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

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

sudo mysql -u root -p

Then create a database called clearfusion

CREATE DATABASE clearfusion;

Create a database user called clearfusionuser with a new password

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

Then grant the user full access to the clearfusion database.

GRANT ALL ON clearfusion.* TO 'clearfusionuser'@'localhost' WITH GRANT OPTION;

Finally, save your changes and exit.

FLUSH PRIVILEGES;
EXIT;

Download clearFusion Latest Release

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

After downloading, use the commands below to extract the archived content into the Apache2 root directory.

cd /tmp
wget https://clearfusioncms.com/assets/public_files/downloads/clearFusionCMSFree-3.4.1.zip
sudo mkdir -p /var/www/clearfusion
sudo unzip clearFusionCMSFree-3.4.1.zip -d /var/www/clearfusion

Then run the commands below to set the correct permissions for the clearFusion root directory and give Apache2 control.

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

Configure Apache2

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

sudo nano /etc/apache2/sites-available/clearfusion.conf

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

<VirtualHost *:80>
     ServerAdmin admin@example.com
     DocumentRoot /var/www/clearfusion
     ServerName example.com
     ServerAlias www.example.com

     <Directory /var/www/clearfusion/>
          Options FollowSymlinks
          AllowOverride All
          Require all granted
     </Directory>

     ErrorLog ${APACHE_LOG_DIR}/error.log
     CustomLog ${APACHE_LOG_DIR}/access.log combined
    

</VirtualHost>

Save the file and exit.

Enable the clearFusion and Rewrite Module

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

sudo a2ensite clearfusion.conf
sudo a2enmod rewrite
sudo systemctl restart apache2.service

Then open your browser and browse to the server domain name. You should see clearFusion setup wizard to complete.

http://example.com/

Before you can continue with the installation wizard, you must first register for a free license of clearFusion CMS. Get a license key and paste it into the box and continue.

Next, validate that all requirements are met and continue.

After that, you’ll then be asked to enter the database name, username, and password and create an admin account for the site. The site should be installed and ready to use when you’re done.

That’s it!

Enjoy~

Congratulation! You have successfully installed clearFusion on Ubuntu 16.04 | 18.04

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