How to host Drupal on Linode VM Instance - ServerAvatar

Published : Mar 21, 2023

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Linode is a cloud hosting company that offers Virtual Private Server (VPS) hosting solutions. Users can easily deploy and manage cloud-based virtual servers to run applications, host websites, and store data. The platform gives full control to customize and configure infrastructure as needed.

Get started with Linode


Drupal is a free and open-source CMS platform that allows you to create stunning websites within minutes. In addition, you can use its plenty of themes and modulus to extend the functionality of your site. And with that, it's available in multiple languages, so it's easy to target your users from various countries.

More info

Create a server in Linode

First of all, Let's create a VM instance in Linode. It provides a lots of different types of VM instances. You can create shared VM instances, Dedicated Instances, Memory Optimised instances and GPU instances. To host a simple website, You will need a shared VM instance. If you want to learn more about Linode and How to manage servers in linode, Follow our [Linode guide](.

If you think your application uses high CPU or RAM, You can get Dedicated CPU VM or Memory Optimised VM respectively. Let's get started with the process.

Step 1: Go to Linode VM Instance Creation Form

When you log in to your Linode account, You will see "Create Linode" button on the top-right corner of the page. Click on it to go to the Linode creation form.

Create a Linode VM Instance - Step 1

Step 2: Select the Distribution

We will use ServerAvatar as a server management panel. It supports Ubuntu 20.04 as well as Ubuntu 22.04. So, select any one of the supported OS.

Create a Linode VM Instance - Step 2

Step 3: Select the Region

Linode has multiple data centers located in different regions worldwide. It is recommended to choose the region that is closest to your major traffic source to reduce latency and improve the performance of your applications.

Create a Linode VM Instance - Step 3

Step 4: Select Linode Plan

Linode offers various plans with different configurations of CPU, RAM, and storage. Choose a plan that fits your budget and meets your application's requirements. With ServerAvatar, You can also host multiple applications on a single Linode VM Instance.

Create a Linode VM Instance - Step 4

Step 5: Set Label and Select Tags

The label is a human-readable name that you can use to identify your instance. Tags are keywords that you can use to categorize and search for your instances. You can also group Linodes by Tags on the dashboard.

Create a Linode VM Instance - Step 5

Step 6: Set Strong Root Password and Select SSH Key

The root password is the administrator password that you will use to access and manage your VM instance. Make sure to use a strong password that is hard to guess and includes a combination of uppercase and lowercase letters, numbers, and special characters.

Next select an SSH key if you want to authenticate with SSH keys. SSH keys are a more secure way to log in to your VM instance than using passwords. If you have an SSH key, you can upload it to your Linode account and use it to log in to your VM instance.

Create a Linode VM Instance - Step 6

Step 7: Select VLAN (If Required)

A VLAN is a logical network that separates traffic from different virtual machines or physical servers. It can be used to isolate network traffic and improve security.

Create a Linode VM Instance - Step 7

Step 8: Select Add-ons - Backups and Private IP

Linode provides an easy way to create and store backups for your VM instances. Backups are highly recommended as they can help you with disaster recovery quickly. And in the last step, You can enable the Private IP address for your VM instance if required.

Create a Linode VM Instance - Step 8

Step 9: Click on "Create Linode"

Finally, Click on "Create Linode" button at the end of the form to create a Linode VM instance. It usually takes around 2 minutes to create a new Linode instance. Once done, You can connect it with ServerAvatar for easy site and server configuration management.

Create a Linode VM Instance - Step 9

Initial Server Configuration

The Initial server configuration includes installation and configuration of various packages required to host your website. Usually, You have to write commands and modify configuration files. Luckily, With ServerAvatar, Your full server configuration and optimisation can be automated.

Here are the three ways to automatically configure your server with ServerAvatar.

Install and Setup Drupal CMS with ServerAvatar

Step 1. Download Drupal Latest Release Zip file

Visit Drupal's official site and Download Drupal Latest release zip file. You can see the download page in the following image.

Drupal zip file

Step 2. Create a PHP Application

On the server panel, access the Application tab from the sidebar and click the Create button, as shown in the image below.

Create application

Next, fill in the required details to create an application, including the Application Name and Domain Name.

The latest version of Drupal runs on PHP version 8.1. So to change the version, check the Show Advanced Options box and change the PHP version of your application like the below image.

Create application

Note That:

If you want to host Drupal CMS on your domain, then make sure to point your domain to the current IP address of your server, and for that:

  1. Log in to your hosting provider site, where you buy your domain. You can check your domain information with one click.

  2. Access DNS Manager to edit your DNS records(contact the support team if you don’t find them)

  3. Change the IP address of A Record of your website to the current server’s IP address.

Click the Create Application button after filling in the required details.

Step 3. Create Drupal Database

On the server panel, Click the Database tab from the sidebar to create a MySQL database for Drupal.

Create database

ServerAvatar will create a database by filling in database details, including Database Name, Username, and Password.

Database creation form

Once you are done, Click the Create Database button, and ServerAvatar will create your database in seconds.

Step 4. Upload the Drupal Zip file

ServerAvatar has a built-in File Manager feature, so you won't need FTP clients to manage files.

To Upload a zip file on your application, go to the application panel of your created application in step 2 and click the File Manager tab.

Delete the index.html directory

Now access the public_html directory and delete the index.html directory to avoid forbidden errors on the site.

Delete the index.html directory

Upload Drupal Zip file

After deleting the file, it’s time to upload the Drupal zip file to the public_html directory. And for that, Click on the upload icon or Drag and Drop the zip file from your system.

Upload Drupal zip file

Uncompress the Zip file

Unzip/Uncompress the uploaded Zip file in the public_html directory like the following image.

Uncompress zip file

Delete the zip file after successfully uncompressed.

Move files to public directory

Click on the folder created in the public_html directory where all the files are located. Select all files, including hidden files and move them to the public_html folder.

Move files to the public directory

Step 5. Install SSL Certificate

SeverAvatar allows you to install automatic SSL certificates with one click to keep users' data secure and verify your site ownership.

To install SSL on your website, click the SSL Certificates tab from the application panel.

Install SSL

Click the Automatic Installation button like the above image. You can also ensure Force HTTP to HTTPS to secure the communication between the browser and your website.

Step 6. Install and Setup Drupal

Open the URL of your application on the web browser. The setup page will appear like the following image.

Choose language

Drupal supports more than 100 languages.

Drupal choose language

Choose the one you want for your site and click the Save and Continue button.

Choose Profile

Select a profile from the given three installation profiles.

Select installation profile

It would be recommended to Install the Standard profile and click the Save and continue button.

Verify Requirements

It verifies your site requirements and redirects to the next step if everything is fine.

Set up database

Enter the database credentials that we have created in step 3. It includes the database name, database user, and password.

Drupal database configuration

Advanced Options include-

  • Host: leave this field as it is if your database is hosted on the same server as an application
  • Port Number: 3306 is recommended for MySQL/Aurora/MariaDB
  • Table Name Prefix: Enter the database table name prefix as your choice

Click the Save and continue button.

Install Site

It can proceed to install Drupal on your site if all the information is correct. It’ll show you the installation status like the following image.

Install Drupal process

Configure Site

Site Information

Enter your site information, including-

  • Site Name: Enter the name of your site as you want.
  • Site Email Address: Automated emails related to the site, including reset password and registration details, will be sent from this email.

Configure site

Site Maintenance account

Enter a Special user account information that can perform account-level tasks such as making backups and applying site updates. The account you set up has full administrative privileges.

Site maintenance

  • Username: Enter a username that is used for logging in to the Drupal Administrative interface
  • Password: Enter the password for the admin login
  • Email Address: Ente admin email address
Regional Settings

Enter the regional specific information, including-

Regional settings

  • Default Country: Select the name of your country.
  • Default Time Zone: Select a time zone based on your location

Tick all the boxes under the Update Notification section to automatically check for updates and receive notifications.

Click the Save and continue button after filling in the required details.

Step 7. Drupal Admin panel

Completing all the above steps results in access to the Drupal admin panel, which looks like the following image.

Drupal admin panel

That’s it. Now you can create an intuitive website or complex web application easily with a few clicks.