Will we ever be able to install Discourse on shared servers?

I understand that Discourse requires a specific hosting environment to run, and cannot run on shared hosting. Most people recommend going for Digital Ocean, VULTR or similar solutions.

I have yet to discover or be offered a solution which is managed and easy to install that doesn’t break the bank. So, I was wondering if we will ever be able to install Discourse on shared, or cloud servers like Cloudways.com in the future.

I’ve searched the forum and the internet, and I am almost certain that this question hasn’t been asked nor answered anywhere, so I do sincerely apologize if it has been.

Thanks in advance,



NO as well!

Reason? Discourse requires privileged access to the system and no shared/managed provider will provide it.

Agree with @itsbhanusharma

Sorry to say. But you can’t install Discourse on a shared hosting plan. The reason is you don’t have root access in your shared plan as discourse needs root access.

You can use Vultr, It’s quite cheap than other hosting providers.

OVH have suitable servers for <$5/mo. I think that’s pretty reasonable. If you need a lot of storage, you can leverage S3 for that.

Honesty it’s pennies for the platform IMO.


I would go for that plan but they’re unmanaged, so you’d need to have time to run all maintenance and installations yourself.

See the following page where it says that they expect you to be your own SysAdmin:


Discourse isn’t that much demanding in terms of maintenance!
and if you can’t spare time every couple of months for your servers then you’re not safe anyway!


Yes, a single Discourse installation might be easy to manage but if you’re a creative agency that manages multiple websites ranging from WordPress to Ghost.org, it is not suitable to self manage that.

I am running one such creative agency and we definitely have the budget to hire two full time sysadmins to take care of that.


Yeah managed hosting ups the ante quite a bit. I didn’t quite catch that from your post.

What implications are there in terms of Mx on a shared platform vs “non”. The way I’m thinking of it, you’d have to manage discourse installs just like you would with Wordpress (for example). You have core OS updates, but that could be automated if you wish.

I’m trying to understand the extra overhead.

Discourse can be upgraded from the Admin panel. I’ve taken the two most recent 2.0 beta upgraded from my mobile phone at a coffee shop. YMMV.

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That’s good to know because Vultr is getting me for $10/mo. for the Docker VPS 1-click install.

I’m considering running my site off an RPi with resinOS if I don’t run into any compatibility issues with the architecture.

From what I am tell, The vast majority of my install customers never log in to the server. I configure the OS to do automatic security updates, and the seem to just work. And that’s a $5/month droplet.

That said, I’ve worked on a remote instalation and maintenance application that I really should return to. But what you want is a managed solution for less than $5/month, right?


No, not necessarily for less than $5/month. I am looking for a host that will allow me to host exactly 4 WordPress Installations, 1 Ghost.org installation and 2 Discourse installations. For these altogether, I would be more than happy to pay anywhere from $20-35. I would of course be happy to compromise in some places, because finding the perfect hosting plan just isn’t possible, but those general specifications really should be met.

Hosting that meets these specifications and has a high amount of SSD storage is almost impossible, so I would be very pleased if one of you give me a viable option.

Use wordpress in Multisite!

Lightweight installs can be managed easily, My ghost blog lives happily besides my wordpress.

again, set up discourse in multisite but be mindful that discourse needs some breathing room as the traffic grows so it’s performance will start to degrade if resources are not sufficient.

Pay $40/month and get two DO droplets of $20 each and dedicate one to your discourse installs and the other one to wordpress and ghost.


I would love to use Digital Ocean. I really would. They look great and I’ve heard so many good things from them. However, I tried a different unmanaged VPS before and couldn’t migrate my existing WordPress sites over. I wasn’t able to set the server up to work with what I wanted.

I ended up getting a refund and am still looking for other options. My SiteGround expires on the 13th of June, so I have until then to decide on another host or I’ll be renewing them.

If you want me to cover your migration & stuff, create a topic in #marketplace

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That would really be helpful, and, thank you for offering. If I were to do that though, would it be difficult to manage?

Wouldn’t I need to configure my own firewalls and security measures to ensure he security of my server?

Not really, a little search on the internet won’t hurt in case you get stuck. I have personally migrated over 80 websites from shared hosting to a VPS in the last 6 years.

That’s a challenge but there always are options! You can do UFW at the very basic level then there are advanced options like SSH keys & stuff to secure your server.

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I’d recommend that you keep your WordPress sites with some WordPress hosting company and self-host the Discourse sites on Digital Ocean. The simplest solution would be two $5/month droplets.

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Actually, I’ve just seen that they offer all of the apps that I want to install as one-click installs. Does this mean that it would be super simple to get set up, or would it still be difficult to configure the server?

I’m just so concerned because I have read this thread, and so many people have recommended against using Digital Ocean, unless you have the time to spend to learn it or are already super good at it: How easy is for a beginner to manage a server? | DigitalOcean

The thing that truly makes this difficult for me to decide is that I want to learn how to manage my own server. I am a 17 year old student who wants to study computer science at university and pursue a career in the industry, so this kind of is my thing. I really do want to do it, but I also don’t want to stress myself out and waste tons of time, especially during exam season.