How to host Invoice Ninja on Digitalocean Droplet - ServerAvatar

Published : Aug 17, 2023

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Digitalocean is one of the most popular cloud platform right now. It offers on-demand cloud computing for various use cases as well as some managed solutions.

Get started with Digitalocean

Invoice Ninja

Invoice Ninja is an open-source application that simplifies invoicing and billing for entrepreneurs, freelancers, and small-to-medium businesses. With its intuitive interface and robust functionality, Invoice Ninja enables users to create and manage professional invoices effortlessly.

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Create Server in Digitalocean

Digitalocean is one of the most popular cloud platform right now. It offers on-demand cloud computing for various use cases as well as some managed solutions. We can deploy any PHP based applications on Digitalocean Droplets. Droplets are the servers or cloud computing instances in Digitalocean. If you want to learn everything about droplet management in Digitalocean in-depth, We recommend you to read our Digitalocean guide.

To deploy any application on Digitalocean, We first need a Droplet. So, we will first create a droplet and perform the initial set up.

Step 1: Go to the Create Droplets page.

Log in to your Digitalocean account and click on the Create button given on the top-right corner of the page. From the drop down menu, click on the Droplets option to see a droplet creation form.

Create a Droplet - Step 1

Step 2: Choose Region

On the Droplet creation page, You will see lots of sections to select lots of things. We will go step by step.

The first thing you have to do is select the region for your droplet. Digitalocean provides lots of options when it comes to selecting the location. The general rule is to select the region that is closest to your audience. It means that for majority of your audience, Your sites will load faster due to lower latency.

Create a Droplet - Step 2

Step 3: Choose an Image or an OS

In this step, you have to select the operating system for your droplet. We recommend you to use Ubuntu 20.04 LTS x64 or Ubuntu 22.04 LTS x64. Ubuntu is easy to configure and manage. If you are using ServerAvatar to manage your droplets, These operating systems are requirement.

Create a Droplet - Step 3

Step 4: Choose the size of the Droplet

Here you have to choose the size of your Droplet. As we mentioned above, Digitalocean provides many different types of droplets. Select the one that fits best for your project.

Create a Droplet - Step 4

If your site is brand new and does not have much traffic, start with a small plan. Once the project starts getting traction, you can upgrade the plan to handle more visitors on the site.

Step 5: Choose Authentication Method

Now you have to select the authentication method. There are two types of authentication methods. They are:

  1. Authentication via SSH Keys
  2. Authentication via Password

If you are using SSH keys for authentication, It is the best option. If you do not know what is SSH keys, You can go with the password method. Make sure to set the strong password for your root user, which is the most powerful user with all the privileges on Linux OS.

Create a Droplet - Step 5

Step 6: Selecting Additional Options

There are three additional options you can choose. They are optional but important in different use cases. The additional options are:

  1. Monitoring: It is a free feature by Digitalocean. It allows you to see additional monitoring data for your server.
  2. Backups: We recommend you to enable full server backups if you are going to deploy in production environment. The cost of the backups depends on the size of the droplet.
  3. Managed Database: You do not need a Managed database if you are using ServerAvatar to manage sites on a droplet. A managed database is a pre-configured MySQL Droplet.

Step 7: Finalise Details

In the last step of this process, We have to enter the name of the droplet, number of droplets you want to create, Define any tags, and select the project. Enter all the details and click on the Create Droplet button to create a droplet.

Create a Droplet - Step 7

In a few minutes, You will have the Droplet up and running. Now, We have to perform the initial configuration on the Droplet to host PHP based frameworks and software.

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 Invoice Ninja on Cloud Using ServerAvatar

Step 1. Create Database

Access the Databases tab on the ServerAvatar server panel to create a MySQL Database.


Enter the credentials and click on the Create Database button.


Step 2. Change PHP-CLI Version

Deploying InvoiceNinja on the server requires PHP-CLI Version 8.1 or above at the server level. To configure the PHP-CLI version, follow the Snapshot.


Step 3. Create PHP Application

Access the Applications tab from the server panel to create a new PHP application.


Fill up the required information, including the Application Name, Domain Name, and Advanced Options for more PHP settings.


Proceeds to next by clicking on the Next Step.

Now select method and service provider Git and GitHub, respectively (follow according to Snapshot)


Enter the required information as given below:

Repository Type: Public
Branch: v5-stable
Deployment script:

git checkout v5-stable;
cp .env.example .env;
composer i -o --no-dev
php artisan key:generate


Move further by clicking on the Next Step.

Create a System User or choose a system user from an existing One.

Then choose PHP version 8.1 or above; the custom webroot should be Public as in the given Snapshot.

Custom Webroot: Public


Then, click on Create Application button.

Step 4. Connect Database

go to the File Manager tab from the sidebar of the application. And access the public_html folder


Now check the Show Hidden Files box to access the .env file to change to the origional database credentials.


Change the following configuration to establish a connection with the database.

DB_DATABASE= Database_Name
DB_USERNAME= Database_Username

to access database credentials, go to the Database tab from the sidebar of the server panel and click the database that we created in the first step.


that's all, open your application URL in web browser to access Invoice Ninja setup page.


Tip: ServerAvatar provides a one-click solution for installing an SSL certificate on your domain. To install SSL, go to the application panel and click the SSL Certificate button to install automatic SSL in your application domain.