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Frequently Asked Questions

If you experience difficulties setting up a NodeBB instance, perhaps one of the following may help.

How do I start/stop/restart NodeBB?

You can call the ./nodebb executable to start and stop NodeBB:

$ ./nodebb
Usage: ./nodebb [options] [command]

Welcome to NodeBB

  -V, --version                                       output the version number
  --json-logging                                      Output to logs in JSON format (default: false)
  --log-level <level>                                 Default logging level to use (default: "info")
  --config <value>                                    Specify a config file (default: "config.json")
  -d, --dev                                           Development mode, including verbose logging (default: false)
  -l, --log                                           Log subprocess output to console (default: false)
  -h, --help                                          display help for command

  start                           Start the NodeBB server
  stop                            Stop the NodeBB server
  restart                         Restart the NodeBB server
  status                          Check the running status of the NodeBB server
  log                             Open the output log (useful for debugging)
  setup [options] [config]        Run the NodeBB setup script, or setup with an initial config
  install                         Launch the NodeBB web installer for configuration setup
  build [options] [targets...]    Compile static assets (JS, CSS, templates, languages)
  activate [plugin]               Activate a plugin for the next startup of NodeBB (nodebb-plugin- prefix is optional)
  plugins                         List all installed plugins
  events [count]                  Outputs the most recent administrative events recorded by NodeBB
  info                            Outputs various system info
  reset [options]                 Reset plugins, themes, settings, etc
  user [command]                  Manage users
  upgrade [options] [scripts...]  Run NodeBB upgrade scripts and ensure packages are up-to-date, or run a particular upgrade script
  help [command]                  Display help for [command]

How do I upgrade my NodeBB to a newer version?

Please consult Upgrading NodeBB

I upgraded NodeBB and now X isn't working properly!

Please consult Upgrading NodeBB

I installed an incompatible plugin, and now my forum won't start!

If you know which plugin caused problems, disable it by running: ./nodebb reset -p nodebb-plugin-pluginName

Otherwise, disable all plugins by running: ./nodebb reset -p

Is it possible to install NodeBB via FTP?

It is possible to transfer the files to your remote server using FTP, but you do require shell access to the server in order to actually "start" NodeBB. Here is a handy guide for installing NodeBB on DigitalOcean

I'm getting an "npm ERR!" error

For the most part, errors involving npm are due to Node.js being outdated. If you see an error similar to this one while running npm install:

npm ERR! Unsupported
npm ERR! Not compatible with your version of node/npm: [email protected]

You'll need to update your Node.js version to 4 or higher.

To do this on Ubuntu:

# Using Ubuntu
curl -sL | sudo -E bash -
sudo apt-get install -y nodejs

# Using Debian, as root
curl -sL | bash -
apt-get install -y nodejs

If successful, running the following command should show a version higher than 0.8

# apt-cache policy nodejs

URLs on my NodeBB (or emails) still have the port number in them!

If you are using nginx or Apache as a reverse proxy, you don't need the port to be shown. Simply run ./nodebb setup and specify the base URL without a port number.

Alternatively, edit the config.json file using your favourite text editor and change use_port to false.

The "Recently Logged In IPs" section only shows

NodeBBs running behind a proxy may have difficulties determining the original IP address that requests come from. It is important that the proxy server provides the referral IP header.

In nginx, ensure that the following line is present in your server block:

proxy_set_header X-Forwarded-For $proxy_add_x_forwarded_for;

In addition, ensure that the use_port option is set to false in your NodeBB's config.json

Submit Bugs on our Issue Tracker

Before reporting bugs, please ensure that the issue has not already been filed on our tracker, or has already been resolved on our support forum. If it has not been filed, feel free to create an account on GitHub and create a new issue.

Ask the NodeBB Community

Having trouble installing NodeBB? Or did something break? Don't hesitate to join our forum and ask for help. Hopefully one day you'll be able to help others too :)