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Passit Installation Guide

If you are looking to evaluate using Passit, the fastest way is our hosted version. If you are looking to develop Passit, read our Gitlab README.

To host Passit yourself, you need:

We suggest using either Docker Compose, Openshift Online, or Heroku.

To learn more about updating Passit, visit our update guide.

Run on any Linux server with Docker

This method assumes you know how to set up DNS records, install Linux packages, and configure nginx. If you prefer a “it just works” solution we recommend the hosted version or Heroku.

  1. Add DNS record pointing to machine and ensure ports 80 and 443 are open. For example
  2. Install Docker and Docker Compose.
  3. Install PostgreSQL locally or use a service like Amazon RDS.
  4. Copy docker-compose.production.yml to your server.
  5. Edit the docker-compose.production.yml and optionally edit the environmental variables listed in it, documented below under “Configurations”. You must at least set the database url and SMTP server.
  6. Run docker-compose up -d to start Passit.
  7. Install nginx or your favorite web server or load balancer.
  8. Configure virtual hosts in nginx. Use proxy_pass to forward requests to the Docker based service.
  9. Run the django migrations (do this on every upgrade). In the container run ./ migrate. If using docker-compose, you can run docker-compose run --rm api ./ migrate.
  10. Install certbot to set up SSL. This is required.

Example nginx configuration in /etc/nginx/sites-enabled/default BEFORE running certbot.

server { 
        location / { 
          proxy_set_header Host $host; 

Finally just go to and you should see the frontend.

With OpenShift

OpenShift v3 is a great way to run Passit. These instructions are a good starting point for Kubernetes as well. A nice advantage of using OpenShift is that database migrations can run automatically.

  1. Create a Postgres database either in OpenShift itself or a service like RDS.
  2. Enable the hstore postgresl extension. From a OpenShift postgresql pod bash terminal it would look like: sql sampledb -c "create extension hstore;
  3. Import this YAML template under “Add to project”. Review each parameter and make sure to enter your database connection information.
  4. Configure SSL. With OpenShift online you could use the provided domain or set your own. To use simply autogenerate the hostname (leave it blank). To use your own domain, we suggest at this time purchasing a cert as openshift is difficult to use with let’s encrypt. To install the cert just edit the route made in step 3.

With Heroku

Heroku is supported via the Docker container runtime. At this time database migrations must be run manually. We show Heroku CLI shortcuts, but steps 1, 2, and 4 can be done on Heroku Dashboard if you’re more comfortable there.

  1. Create a new Heroku app.
    • heroku apps:create <heroku-app-name>
  2. Add a Postgres database to your new app.
    • heroku addons:create heroku-postgresql --app <heroku-app-name>
  3. Deploy the Docker image.
    • docker pull passit:passit:stable
    • docker tag passit:passit:stable<heroku-app-name>/web
    • heroku container:login
    • docker push<heroku-app-name>/web
    • heroku container:release web
  4. Set environment variables.
    • DATABASE_URL should already be set
    • IS_DEBUG should be False
    • SECRET_KEY should be a random string of 40 characters.
    • heroku config:set ENV_VAR=Value --app <heroku-app-name>
    • heroku config --app <heroku-app-name> to confirm that everything is set
    • View the Configuration section below for more information and variables.
  5. Manually migrate the database: heroku run --app <heroku-app-name> ./ migrate

The app should be up and running, but you’ll need to configure email in order to complete account registrations.

Without Docker

This method is not supported. Only do this if you do not wish to use Docker and know how to run a basic Django app with static HTML front end.

Checkout the master branch of passit-backend Run Django as you would any Django app with something like uWSGI + nginx.

Download the static passit-frontend build (click the download arrow and then Download build_yarn artifacts). Place the files where you serve static html/css/js files from. < Static html < Django server

Set up the environmental variables below. Set up SSL on both domains.


Configuration is done by setting these environment variables

Required settings

Optional settings