Install plugins on a self-hosted site

:warning: This guide assumes that you have a self-hosted standard installation. We only support the standard method of install here, so these instructions assume you have a standard install.

:warning: This guide only applies to self-hosted Discourse instances. If you are using a managed hosting service, the available plugins are controlled by your hosting provider. For example, on our hosting these specific plugins are available by hosting tier.

In this tutorial, we’ll install the Discourse Solved plugin.

This tutorial requires an understanding of how to use GitHub repos, specifically, how to get or copy the git clone URL and how to edit YAML (*.yml) files via the terminal using nano, specifically how to save and exit on nano. YAML files strongly follow indentations, so be sure to respect these as you copy and paste and edit the necessary *.yml for your Discourse instance.

  • Copy the plugin’s GitHub git clone url.

  • Access your container’s app.yml file (present in /var/discourse/containers/)

    cd /var/discourse
    nano containers/app.yml
    
  • Add the plugin’s repository URL to your container’s app.yml file:

    hooks:
      after_code:
        - exec:
            cd: $home/plugins
            cmd:
              - sudo -E -u discourse git clone https://github.com/discourse/docker_manager.git
              - sudo -E -u discourse git clone https://github.com/discourse/discourse-solved.git
    

    Add the plugin’s git clone url just below the line containing git clone https://github.com/discourse/docker_manager.git)

    Follow the existing format of the docker_manager.git line; if it does not contain sudo -E -u discourse then insert - git clone https://github.com/discourse/discourse-solved.git.

  • Rebuild the container:

    cd /var/discourse
    ./launcher rebuild app
    

    That’s it, you’ve successfully installed the Discourse Solved plugin on your Discourse instance!


If your plugin is hosted in a private repository

You must use an OAuth token:

With the OAuth token, you can install your plugin in the same way as a public repo, and you don’t need to create a SSH key.

hooks:
  after_code:
    - exec:
        cd: $home/plugins
        cmd:
              - sudo -E -u discourse git clone https://<token>@github.com/owner/repo.git

We strongly advise you to use OAuth tokens for plugins in private repositories. However, if you cannot, see below.

SSH Key Private Install Steps
run:
  - exec: echo "Beginning of custom commands"
  
  - exec: cd /var/www/discourse && sudo -u discourse bundle install --deployment --without test --without development
  - exec: echo "Host github.com\n\tStrictHostKeyChecking no\n" >> /user/.ssh/config
  - file:
      path: /user/.ssh/id_rsa
      chmod: 600
      contents: |
        -----BEGIN RSA PRIVATE KEY-----
        MIIEogIBAAKCAQEArCQG213utzqE5YVjTVF5exGRCkE9OuM7LCp/FOuPdoHrFUXk
           .... etc ....
        -----END RSA PRIVATE KEY-----
  - file:
      path: /user/.ssh/id_rsa.pub
      chmod: 600
      contents: ssh-rsa AAAAB3NzaC1yc2EAAAABIwAAAQEAklOUpkDHrfHY17SbrmTIpNLTGK9Tj .... etc .... user@discourse
  - exec: cd $home/plugins && git clone git@github.com:SecretOrg/secret-plugin.git
  - exec: cd $home && sudo -E -u discourse bundle exec rake db:migrate
  - exec: cd $home && rm -fr tmp/cache
  - exec: cd $home &&  sudo -E -u discourse bundle exec rake assets:precompile
  - exec: rm /user/.ssh/id_rsa
  - exec: rm /user/.ssh/id_rsa.pub

  - exec: echo "End of custom commands"
  • Rebuild the container:
cd /var/discourse
./launcher rebuild app

Your private plugin should be installed on your Discourse instance.

How to uninstall a plugin

To remove a plugin, simply remove the - git clone https://github.com/... line from your app.yml file and rebuild your site via

cd /var/discourse
./launcher rebuild app
163 Likes

I updated the guide to use another example plugin instead of Discourse Spoiler Alert, which has been bundled into core.

I used Discourse Solved, but let me know if a different one would be better.

7 Likes

I hosted discourse on Digital Ocean and when i used that format it showed me this error.

FAILED
--------------------
Pups::ExecError: cd /var/www/discourse/plugins && sudo -E -u discourse git clone https://github.com/discourse/docker_manager.git  - sudo -E -u discourse git clone https://github.com/discourse/discourse-solved.git failed with return #<Process::Status: pid 252 exit 129>
Location of failure: /usr/local/lib/ruby/gems/3.2.0/gems/pups-1.2.1/lib/pups/exec_command.rb:132:in `spawn'
exec failed with the params {"cd"=>"$home/plugins", "cmd"=>["sudo -E -u discourse git clone https://github.com/discourse/docker_manager.git  - sudo -E -u discourse git clone https://github.com/discourse/discourse-solved.git"]}
bootstrap failed with exit code 129
** FAILED TO BOOTSTRAP ** please scroll up and look for earlier error messages, there may be more than one.
./discourse-doctor may help diagnose the problem.
2a49220a4ff35feac3c1a9a4a9c1cad1094bde4c9ba321975ebc9ae7ead2bbee

Then i used this format

hooks:
  after_code:
    - exec:
        cd: $home/plugins
        cmd:
          - sudo -E -u discourse git clone https://github.com/discourse/docker_manager.git && sudo -E -u discourse git clone https://github.com/discourse/discourse-solved.git

instead of

hooks:
  after_code:
    - exec:
        cd: $home/plugins
        cmd:
          - sudo -E -u discourse git clone https://github.com/discourse/docker_manager.git
          - sudo -E -u discourse git clone https://github.com/discourse/discourse-solved.git
2 Likes

8 posts were split to a new topic: Formatting issues adding plugins to app.yml