How to Setup Batflat on Ubuntu Linux with Nginx

Batflat is a light, fast, and bootstrap-ready flat-file CMS (Content Management System) that allows users and webmasters to create websites without the need for a separate database. Just download the web content files and enjoy!

It offers features that may not be available to other PHP-based CMS, like WordPress Joomla, or Drupal.

For one, it doesn’t need a database server, call it database-less. It is only 1024 kilobytes, and it has all features that you need but is smaller than WordPress, like SEO-friendly design, flexible CSS framework, and more.

Batflat uses a unique algorithm to find or list any content based on date, type, category, tag, or author, and the performance will remain fast even if you have thousands of posts and hundreds of tags.

For more about Batflat, please check its homepage.

This brief tutorial shows students and new users how to install Batflat on Ubuntu 16.04 and 18.04 LTS with Nginx and PHP 7.2-FPM support.

Install Nginx HTTP Server on Ubuntu

Nginx HTTP Server is the most popular web server in use. so install it, since Batflat needs it.

To install Nginx HTTP on the Ubuntu 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 the 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

To test the Nginx setup, open your browser and browse to the server hostname or IP address and you should see the Nginx default test page as shown below. When you see that, then Nginx is working as expected.

http://localhost
nginx default home page test

Install PHP 7.2 and Related Modules

PHP 7.2 may not be available in Ubuntu default repositories for some systems. if you need it, you will have to get it from third-party repositories.

Run the commands below to add the below third party repository to upgrade to PHP 7.2

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-fpm php7.2-common php7.2-mbstring php7.2-xmlrpc php7.2-sqlite3 php7.2-soap php7.2-gd php7.2-xml php7.2-cli php7.2-curl php7.2-zip

After installing PHP 7.2, run the commands below to open the PHP default config file for Nginx.

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

Then make the changes on the following lines below in the file and save. The value below is a great setting to apply in your environment.

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

After making the change above, save the file and close it.

After installing PHP and related modules, all you have to do is restart Nginx to reload PHP configurations.

To restart Nginx, run the commands below

sudo systemctl restart nginx.service

Download Batflat Latest Release

Next, visit the Batflat site and download the latest package. or run the commands below to download Batflat packages from GitHub.

After downloading, run the commands below to extract the downloaded file and move it into a new Batflat root directory. After that, change into the Batflat root directory to install the PHP-required packages.

cd /tmp
wget https://github.com/sruupl/batflat/archive/master.zip
unzip master.zip
sudo mv batflat-master /var/www/html/batflat

Then run the commands below to set the correct permissions for Batflat to adjust the directory permissions.

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

Configure Nginx Batflat Site

Finally, configure the Nginx configuration file for Batflat. This file will control how users access Batflat content. Run the commands below to create a new configuration file called batflat

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

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.

server {
    listen 80;
    listen [::]:80;
    root /var/www/html/batflat;
    index  index.php index.html index.htm;
    server_name  example.com www.example.com;

     client_max_body_size 100M;

     autoindex off;

     location / {
       try_files $uri $uri/ @handler;
         }

     location  /admin {
        try_files $uri $uri/ /admin/index.php?$args;
        }
    
    location @handler {
        if (!-e $request_filename) { rewrite / /index.php last; }
        rewrite ^(.*.php)/ $1 last;
        }

    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;
     }
}

Save the file and exit.

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

Enable the Batflat Site and Rewrite Module

After configuring the VirtualHost above, enable it by running the commands below, then restart the Nginx server.

sudo ln -s /etc/nginx/sites-available/batflat /etc/nginx/sites-enabled/

Restart Nginx

sudo systemctl restart nginx.service

Next, open your browser and browse to the server hostname or IP address and you should see the Batflat page. enter your blog info and complete the setup.

http://example.com/
Batflat ubuntu setup

Enjoy!

Batflat began as a database-less flat file content management system. Its structure allowed you to have just the amount of functionality you needed in a flat file CMS solution, adding extensions (blade packs) for further functionality, whilst allowing setup on simple servers with no database.

To log in as admin, go to:

http://example.com/admin

Login with:

Username: admin
Password: admin

Batflat admin login ubuntu

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