How to Setup Evolution CMS with Nginx on Ubuntu Linux

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This post provides detailed instructions on how to install and run Evolution CMS (Content Management System) with Nginx and PHP- FPM support. It also describes the steps to install required servers and software like Nginx HTTP Server, MariaDB database server, and PHP 7.2-FPM along with its related modules. Additionally, the post guides through the configuration…

This article explains installing Evolution CMS with Nginx support on Ubuntu Linux.

Evolution CMS claims to be the world’s fastest, most customizable content management platform built with PHP, which is focused on speed, security, and flexibility.

Setting up Evolution CMS with Nginx on Ubuntu Linux allows you to create a powerful and flexible content management system that is fast and secure. Evolution CMS is highly customizable and built with PHP, making it a great option for those who want to create a CMS platform that meets their specific needs.

Nginx is a fast and reliable web server that is easy to install and configure, while Ubuntu Linux provides a stable and secure environment for hosting your CMS. Together, these tools provide a powerful platform for creating and managing your website’s content.

For more about Evolution, please check their Homepage

Install Nginx HTTP Server

Evolution requires a web server, and the Nginx HTTP server is probably the second most popular open-source web server available today. To install the 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 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

Now that Nginx has been installed browse your browser to the URL below to test whether the web server works.

http://localhost
nginx default home page test

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

Install MariaDB Database Server

Evolution also requires a database server to store its content. MariaDB is a great place to start if you want a genuinely open-source database server. 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 service to start when the server boots.

Run these on Ubuntu 16.04 LTS

sudo systemctl stop mysql.service
sudo systemctl start mysql.service
sudo systemctl enable mysql.service

Run these on Ubuntu 18.10 and 18.04 LTS

sudo systemctl stop mariadb.service
sudo systemctl start mariadb.service
sudo systemctl enable mariadb.service

Next, run the commands below to secure the database server with a root password if you were not prompted to do so during the installation.

sudo mysql_secure_installation

When prompted, answer the questions below by following the guide.

  • Enter current password for root (enter for none): 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

Once MariaDB is installed, run the commands below to test whether the database server was installed.

sudo mysql -u root -p

Type the root password when prompted.

mariadb welcome

The server was successfully installed if you see a similar screen.

Install PHP 7.2-FPM and Related Modules.

Evolution 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

sudo apt update

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

sudo apt install php7.2-fpm php7.2-common php7.2-mysql php7.2-gmp php7.2-curl php7.2-intl php7.2-mbstring php7.2-xmlrpc php7.2-gd php7.2-xml php7.2-cli php7.2-zip

After installing PHP 7.2-FPM, run the commands below to open Nginx’s PHP default configuration file.

sudo nano /etc/php/7.2/fpm/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
cgi.fix_pathinfo = 0
memory_limit = 256M
upload_max_filesize = 100M
max_execution_time = 360
date.timezone = America/Chicago

Restarting the Nginx web server whenever you change the PHP configuration file would be best. To do so, run the commands below:

sudo systemctl restart nginx.service

Once PHP is installed, create a test file called phpinfo.php in the 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 the PHP default test page.

PHP Test Page

Create Evolution CMS Database

Once you’ve installed all the packages required for Evolution, continue below to start configuring the servers. First, run the commands below to create a blank Evolution database.

To log on to the MariaDB database server, run the commands below.

sudo mysql -u root -p

Then, create a database called Evolution.

CREATE DATABASE evolution;

Create a database user called evolutionuser with a new password

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

Then, grant the user full access to the database.

GRANT ALL ON evolution.* TO 'evolutionuser'@'localhost' IDENTIFIED BY 'user_password_here' WITH GRANT OPTION;

Finally, save your changes and exit.

FLUSH PRIVILEGES;
EXIT;

Download Evolution Latest Release

You may want to download Evolution’s latest release from its download page. Or use the commands below to use Wget and get it downloaded.

Once downloaded, extract the downloaded content into the newly created Evolution directory.

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

Next, run the commands below to set the correct permissions for the Evolution root directory and give Nginx control.

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

Configure Nginx

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

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

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

    client_max_body_size 100M;

     location / {
                root /var/www/html/evolution;
                if (!-e $request_filename) {
                        rewrite ^/(.*)$ /index.php?q=$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;
    }

     location ^~ /data {
         deny all;
      }
}

Save the file and exit.

Enable the Evolution and Rewrite Module

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

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

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

http://example.com/install

Then, follow the on-screen instructions to complete the setup.

Evolution CMS Install Ubuntu

Next, select to perform a new installation. Then click Next to continue.

Evolution CMS Install Ubuntu

Choose your installation language and click Next.

Evolution CMS Install Ubuntu

Next, type in the database information created above and continue. You will have to validate each step before you’re allowed to continue.

Evolution CMS Install Ubuntu

After that installation, all components are selected and continued.

Evolution CMS Install Ubuntu

Finally, click Install.

Evolution CMS Install Ubuntu

That should install Evolution CMS. Then, log on with the admin credentials created above, and you’re done!

Evolution CMS install ubuntu

Congratulation! You have successfully installed Evolution CMS on Ubuntu 16.04 | 18.04.

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