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Install Joomla on Ubuntu with Nginx, PHP 7.3 and MariaDB

Step 1: Install Nginx

To install the current version of Nginx, simply follow the documentation on its offical website seen here or do the following commands:

Firstly we need to install ca-certificates so we can verify that we downloaded the correct file from a trusted source.

sudo apt install curl gnupg2 ca-certificates lsb-release

Then we need to add Nginx mainline package to our repositories

echo "deb `lsb_release -cs` nginx" \     | sudo tee /etc/apt/sources.list.d/nginx.list

Now verify that we downloaded the correct file

curl -fsSL | sudo apt-key add - 

If it prints out OK! then you are good to go!

Now that we have downloaded & verified its authnicity lets install it!

sudo apt update

Install Nginx.

sudo apt install nginx

That’s it! You have now installed the latest release of Nginx. You should now start it!

sudo systemctl start nginx.service

and make it start on reboot.

sudo systemctl enable nginx.service

Visit your servers IP address in your webbrowser. You should now see something along these lines if it is working correctly.

Step 2: Install MariaDB

To install the server & client:

sudo apt-get install mariadb-server mariadb-client

Enable it on restart:

sudo systemctl enable mysql.service

Start MariaDB:

sudo systemctl start mysql.service

Setup MariaDB:

sudo mysql_secure_installation

You will now be prompted with a configuration setup file. Please read through it and configure it to your liking. It is recommended to disable logins that are not from localhost.

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

Step 3: Create your Database

After this you may create your database for Joomla.

Login into MySQL:

sudo mysql -u root -p

You can create your database by running the following commands. We will call it joomla although you are free to call it whatever you want.


Create a new user:

CREATE USER 'joomla'@'localhost' IDENTIFIED BY 'password_here';

Assign the user to the joomla database

GRANT ALL ON joomla.* TO 'joomla'@'localhost' IDENTIFIED BY 'password_here' WITH GRANT OPTION;

Remember to change password_here with your actual password.

Exit and flush:


Step 4: Install PHP 7.3

To add the repositories for PHP:

sudo apt-get install software-properties-common

To add the 2nd repository:

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:ondrej/php

Run this to download your added repositories:

sudo apt update

We can now install PHP now that we have all of the required repositories.

sudo apt install php7.3-fpm php7.3-common php7.3-mysql php7.3-gmp php7.3-curl php7.3-intl php7.3-mbstring php7.3-xmlrpc php7.3-gd php7.3-xml php7.3-cli php7.3-zip

It is recommended to raise the memory limit and disable cgi.fix_pathinfo. Your PHP configuration is located in/etc/php/7.3/cli/php.ini.

sudo nano /etc/php/7.3/cli/php.ini

Press CTRL + W and search for memory_limit.

Replace it with memory_limit = 256

Press CTRL + W and search for ;cgi.fix_pathinfo=1

Replace it with cgi.fix_pathinfo=0

Save & exit by pressing CTRL + X followed by Y

Step 5: Download & Extract Joomla

Switch over to your temporary directory

cd /tmp

Download the latest version of Joomla, currently being 3.9.5


Make a new directory called joomla

mkdir /usr/share/nginx/html/joomla

Extract the files to your /usr/share/nginx/html/joomla

sudo tar -xvzf Joomla_3-9-5-Stable-Full_Package.tar.gz -C /usr/share/nginx/html/joomla

Step 6: Configure Nginx

Add nginx to www-data group

sudo usermod -a -G www-data nginx

Change owner of directory to www-data

sudo chown -R www-data /usr/share/nginx/html

Go into your default.conf file

sudo nano /etc/nginx/conf.d/default.conf

Replace your existing configuration file with the one below

server {
    listen       80;
    server_name  localhost;

    root   /usr/share/nginx/html/joomla;
    index  index.php index.html index.htm;

   location / {
    if ($request_uri ~ ^/(.*)\.html$) {
        return 302 /$1;

    error_page   500 502 503 504  /50x.html;
    location = /50x.html {
        root   /usr/share/nginx/html;
        location ~ \.php$ {
        fastcgi_split_path_info ^(.+\.php)(/.+)$;
        fastcgi_pass   unix:/var/run/php/php7.3-fpm.sock;
        fastcgi_index  index.php;
        fastcgi_param  SCRIPT_FILENAME $document_root$fastcgi_script_name;
        include        fastcgi_params;


Step 7: Setup Joomla

Open up your webbrowser and navigate to your IP/Domain. Once here you should see something like this:

Configure your installation and click next.

On the next screen enter your username, database name and password.

Joomla configuration screen

Click Next and continue to the next step.

You are almost done! All you have to do now is to click install and wait for it to install.

Joomla configuration screen

Congratulations. You have now installed Joomla!