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Self-hosted server

If you have your own (virtual) web server you can use this guide to install Firefly III. You may have some ingredients prepared already.


You need a working LAMP, LEMP or WAMP stack. If you don't have one, search the web to find out how to get one. Make sure you're running PHP 8.0. There are many tutorials that will help you install one. Here are some Google queries to help you.

  1. Install a LAMP stack with PHP 8.0
  2. Upgrade Ubuntu PHP 8.0
  3. PHP 8.0 raspberry pi

If you wish to use another database such as SQLite or Postgres, please check out the FAQ.

You need a (MySQL) database and credentials for a user that has permissions on that database. Firefly III creates its own tables. Avoid using the root user.

Several users have created specific guides for their OS and database combination.

  1. Raspberry Pi 3, with Docker and Docker compose
  2. Firefly III in Ubuntu 20.04 and proxmox
  3. Automated scripts to run various Linux tasks

In case you want to use one of the languages that Firefly III is equipped with, make sure you have installed the necessary locales. For Debian / Ubuntu for example, use sudo apt install language-pack-nl-base && sudo locale-gen.

Preparing your server

Extra packages

Install the following PHP modules:

  • PHP BCMath Arbitrary Precision Mathematics
  • PHP Internationalization extension
  • PHP Curl
  • PHP Zip
  • PHP GD
  • PHP MBString
  • PHP whatever database you're gonna use.

You can search the web to find out how to install these modules. Some may be installed already depending on your system. Use phpinfo() to find out.

Installing composer

If you have sudo rights (try sudo ls) you can install composer using the following command:

curl -sS | sudo php -- --install-dir=/usr/local/bin --filename=composer

Verify the installation of composer using the following command.

composer -v

If you have no sudo rights, you can simply download composer with the instructions under the header "manual download". Use php composer.phar instead of composer in the instructions ahead.

This concludes the server preparations. If you're having trouble with (parts of) this step, please check out the FAQ.

Installing Firefly III

Main command

Browse to /var/www which is probably the directory where your web server is configured to find its files.

Enter the following command.

composer create-project grumpydictator/firefly-iii --no-dev --prefer-dist firefly-iii <latest>

You should replace <latest> with the latest version, which you can find on the Firefly III version page.

If this gives an error because of read/write permissions, prepend the command with sudo. Then fix the permissions:

sudo chown -R www-data:www-data firefly-iii
sudo chmod -R 775 firefly-iii/storage


In the firefly-iii directory you will find a .env file. Open this file using your favorite editor. There are instructions what to do in this file.

Initialize the database

This step is very important, because Firefly III needs a database to work with and it will tell you whether or not your configuration is correct. Run the following command in the Firefly III directory.

php artisan migrate:refresh --seed
php artisan firefly-iii:upgrade-database
php artisan passport:install

Now you should be able to visit http://localhost/firefly-iii/ and see Firefly III.

It doesn't work!

This manual can't list all the possible exceptions and errors you may run into. Some common issues are documented in the FAQ.

Look in these directions when you're running into problems:

  • Apache may not have mod_rewrite enabled or the htaccess file isn't activated (AllowOverride).
  • Nginx may not have the correct try_files instruction in the location block.

Good luck!

Visiting Firefly III

Browsing to site

Browsing to the site should be easy. You should see a login screen.

Registering an account

You cannot login yet. Click on "Register a new account" and fill in the form.

Your first accounts

You will be logged in automatically. Follow the instructions and you are done!

Last update: 2021-10-16