Install and Configure Drupal 8 with Nginx and Let's Encrypt on CentOS 8

Drupal is a free, open-source and scalable content management system that can be used by individuals to create and manage any types of websites. It is written in PHP and uses MySQL/MariaDB to store its data. Drupal provides a rich set of features that can be extended by thousands of add-ons. Drupal supports a lot of web servers including, Apache, Nginx, IIS, Lighttpd and databases MySQL, MariaDB, MongoDB, SQLite, PostgreSQL, and MS SQL server. Drupal comes with a simple and user-friendly web UI that allows you to create web sites without any coding knowledge.

In this tutorial, we will show you how to install Drupal 8 on CentOS 8 server and secure it with Let's Encrypt free SSL.

Requirements

  • A server running CentOS 8.
  • A valid domain name pointed with your server IP
  • A root password is configured on the server.

Install Nginx, MariaDB and PHP

Before starting, you will need to install the LEMP server on your server. You can install it by running the following command:

dnf install nginx mariadb-server php php-fpm php-cli php-mbstring php-gd php-xml php-curl php-mysqlnd php-pdo php-json php-opcache -y

Once installed, start Nginx, MariaDB and php-fpm service and enable them to start after system reboot using the following command:

systemctl start nginx
systemctl start php-fpm
systemctl start mariadb
systemctl enable nginx
systemctl enable php-fpm
systemctl enable mariadb

Configure Database

By default, MariaDB is not secured so you will need to secure it. You can secure it by running the following command:

mysql_secure_installation

Answer all the questions as shown below:

Enter current password for root (enter for none):
Set root password? [Y/n] Y
New password:
Re-enter new password:
Remove anonymous users? [Y/n] Y
Disallow root login remotely? [Y/n] Y
Remove test database and access to it? [Y/n] Y
Reload privilege tables now? [Y/n] Y

Once you are done, log in to MariaDB shell with the following command:

mysql -u root -p

Provide your root password when prompt then create a database and user for Drupal with the following command:

MariaDB [(none)]> CREATE DATABASE drupaldb CHARACTER SET utf8mb4 COLLATE utf8mb4_general_ci;
MariaDB [(none)]> CREATE USER [email protected] IDENTIFIED BY "password";

Next, grant all the privileges to drupaldb with the following command:

MariaDB [(none)]> GRANT ALL ON drupaldb.* TO [email protected] IDENTIFIED BY "password";

Next, flush the privileges and exit from the MariaDB shell with the following command:

MariaDB [(none)]> FLUSH PRIVILEGES;
MariaDB [(none)]> EXIT;

Download Drupal

First, you will need to download the latest version of the Drupal from their official website. You can download it with the following command:

wget https://ftp.drupal.org/files/projects/drupal-8.7.10.tar.gz

Once downloaded, extract the downloaded file with the following command:

tar -xvzf drupal-8.7.10.tar.gz

Next, move the extracted directory to the Nginx web root directory with the following command:

mv drupal-8.7.10 /var/www/html/drupal

Next, create a directory to store website files and rename the default.settings.php file as shown below:

mkdir /var/www/html/drupal/sites/default/files
cp /var/www/html/drupal/sites/default/default.settings.php /var/www/html/drupal/sites/default/settings.php

Next, change the ownership of the Drupal directory to nginx as shown below:

chown -R nginx:nginx /var/www/html/drupal/

Configure Nginx for Drupal

First, create a php-fpm configuration file for Drupal with the following command:

nano /etc/php-fpm.d/drupal.conf

Add the following lines:

[drupal]
user = nginx
group = nginx
listen.owner = nginx
listen.group = nginx
listen = /run/php-fpm/drupal.sock
pm = ondemand
pm.max_children =  50
pm.process_idle_timeout = 10s
pm.max_requests = 500
chdir = /

Save and close the file when you are finished. Then, create an Nginx virtual host configuration file for Drupal:

nano /etc/nginx/conf.d/drupal.conf

Add the following lines:

server {
    listen 80;
    server_name example.com;

    root /var/www/html/drupal;

    access_log /var/log/nginx/example.com.access.log;
    error_log /var/log/nginx/example.com.error.log;

    location = /favicon.ico {
        log_not_found off;
        access_log off;
    }

    location = /robots.txt {
        allow all;
        log_not_found off;
        access_log off;
    }

    location ~ \..*/.*\.php$ {
        return 403;
    }

    location ~ ^/sites/.*/private/ {
        return 403;
    }

    # Block access to scripts in site files directory
    location ~ ^/sites/[^/]+/files/.*\.php$ {
        deny all;
    }
    location ~ (^|/)\. {
        return 403;
    }

    location / {
        try_files $uri /index.php?$query_string;
    }

    location @rewrite {
        rewrite ^/(.*)$ /index.php?q=$1;
    }
    location ~ /vendor/.*\.php$ {
        deny all;
        return 404;
    }


    location ~ '\.php$|^/update.php' {
        fastcgi_split_path_info ^(.+?\.php)(|/.*)$;
        include fastcgi_params;
       	# Block httpoxy attacks. See https://httpoxy.org/.
        fastcgi_param HTTP_PROXY "";
        fastcgi_param SCRIPT_FILENAME $document_root$fastcgi_script_name;
        fastcgi_param PATH_INFO $fastcgi_path_info;
        fastcgi_param QUERY_STRING $query_string;
        fastcgi_intercept_errors on;
        fastcgi_pass unix:/run/php-fpm/drupal.sock;
    }
    location ~ ^/sites/.*/files/styles/ { # For Drupal >= 7
        try_files $uri @rewrite;
    }

    # Handle private files through Drupal. Private file's path can come
    # with a language prefix.
    location ~ ^(/[a-z\-]+)?/system/files/ { # For Drupal >= 7
        try_files $uri /index.php?$query_string;
    }

    location ~* \.(js|css|png|jpg|jpeg|gif|ico|svg)$ {
        try_files $uri @rewrite;
        expires max;
        log_not_found off;
    }
}

Save and close the file. Then, restart php-fpm and Nginx service to apply the changes:

systemctl restart php-fpm
systemctl restart nginx

Configure SELinux and Firewall

By default, SELinux is enabled in CentOS 8. So you will need to configure SELinux for Drupal to work correctly.

First, allows Drupal to write to the public and private files directories with the following command:

semanage fcontext -a -t httpd_sys_rw_content_t "/var/www/html/drupal(/.*)?"
semanage fcontext -a -t httpd_sys_rw_content_t '/var/www/html/drupal/sites/default/settings.php'
semanage fcontext -a -t httpd_sys_rw_content_t '/var/www/html/drupal/sites/default/files'
restorecon -Rv /var/www/html/drupal
restorecon -v /var/www/html/drupal/sites/default/settings.php
restorecon -Rv /var/www/html/drupal/sites/default/files

Next, allows Drupal to send outbound emails with the following command:

setsebool -P httpd_can_sendmail on

Next, you will need to create a firewall rule to allow HTTP and HTTPS service from external networks. You can allow it with the following command:

firewall-cmd --permanent --add-service=http
firewall-cmd --permanent --add-service=https
firewall-cmd --reload

Secure Drupal with Let's Encrypt SSL

Drupal is now installed and configured. It's time to secure it with Let's Encrypt free SSL.

To do so, you will need to download the certbot client on your server. You can download and set correct permission by running the following command:

wget https://dl.eff.org/certbot-auto
mv certbot-auto /usr/local/bin/certbot-auto
chown root /usr/local/bin/certbot-auto
chmod 0755 /usr/local/bin/certbot-auto

Now, run the following command to obtain and install an SSL certificate for your Drupal website.

certbot-auto --nginx -d example.com

The above command will first install all the required dependencies on your server. Once installed, you will be asked to provide an email address and accept the term of service as shown below:

Saving debug log to /var/log/letsencrypt/letsencrypt.log
Plugins selected: Authenticator apache, Installer apache
Enter email address (used for urgent renewal and security notices) (Enter 'c' to
cancel): [email protected]

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Please read the Terms of Service at
https://letsencrypt.org/documents/LE-SA-v1.2-November-15-2017.pdf. You must
agree in order to register with the ACME server at
https://acme-v02.api.letsencrypt.org/directory
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
(A)gree/(C)ancel: A

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Would you be willing to share your email address with the Electronic Frontier
Foundation, a founding partner of the Let's Encrypt project and the non-profit
organization that develops Certbot? We'd like to send you email about our work
encrypting the web, EFF news, campaigns, and ways to support digital freedom.
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
(Y)es/(N)o: Y 


Obtaining a new certificate
Performing the following challenges:
http-01 challenge for example.com
Waiting for verification...
Cleaning up challenges
Deploying Certificate to VirtualHost /etc/nginx/conf.d/drupal.conf

Next, you will need to choose whether or not to redirect HTTP traffic to HTTPS as shown below:

Please choose whether or not to redirect HTTP traffic to HTTPS, removing HTTP access.
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
1: No redirect - Make no further changes to the webserver configuration.
2: Redirect - Make all requests redirect to secure HTTPS access. Choose this for
new sites, or if you're confident your site works on HTTPS. You can undo this
change by editing your web server's configuration.
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Select the appropriate number [1-2] then [enter] (press 'c' to cancel): 2

Type 2 and hit Enter to continue. Once the installation has been finished, you should see the following output:

Redirecting all traffic on port 80 to ssl in /etc/nginx/conf.d/drupal.conf

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Congratulations! You have successfully enabled https://example.com

You should test your configuration at:
https://www.ssllabs.com/ssltest/analyze.html?d=example.com
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

IMPORTANT NOTES:
 - Congratulations! Your certificate and chain have been saved at:
   /etc/letsencrypt/live/example.com/fullchain.pem
   Your key file has been saved at:
   /etc/letsencrypt/live/example.com/privkey.pem
   Your cert will expire on 2020-03-23. To obtain a new or tweaked
   version of this certificate in the future, simply run certbot-auto
   again with the "certonly" option. To non-interactively renew *all*
   of your certificates, run "certbot-auto renew"
 - If you like Certbot, please consider supporting our work by:

   Donating to ISRG / Let's Encrypt:   https://letsencrypt.org/donate
   Donating to EFF:                    https://eff.org/donate-le

Access Drupal Website

Now, open your web browser and type the URL https://example.com. You will be redirected to the following page:

Choose language

Select your desired language and click on the Save and continue button. You should see the following page:

Select installation profile

Choose your installation profile and click on the Save and continue button. You should see the following page:

Database configuration

Provide your database details and click on the Save and continue button. You should see the following page:

Configure web site

Provide your site name, admin username, password and click on the Save and continue button. You should see your Drupal dashboard in the following page:

Welcome to your Drupal site

Congratulations! you have successfully installed and secured Drupal on CentOS 8 server.

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2 Comment(s)

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Comments

By: Marius at: 2020-03-26 10:14:29

Great Work, thank you.

I get an error 404 when i click any point at menue from startpage:

[error] 2953#0: *7 open() "/var/www/html/drupal/admin/structure" failed (2: No such file or directory), client: x.x.x.x, server: _, request: "GET /drupal/admin/structure HTTP/1.1", host: "y.y.y.y", referrer: "http://y.y.y.y/drupal/"

[error] 2953#0: *7 open() "/var/www/html/404.html" failed (2: No such file or directory), client: x.x.x.x, server: _, request: "GET /drupal/admin/structure HTTP/1.1", host: "y.y.y.y", referrer: "http://y.y.y.y/drupal/"

 

Some guys at forum writes this is an issue with URL-rewriting in nginx (drupal.conf), but i have no idea..

Anyone Ideas ?

 

My Config-File (drupal.conf) is 1:1 like above. Installed it without LetsEncrypt and with external MySQL DB.

By: Marius at: 2020-03-26 10:41:35

Update:

I found out by accident that there IS a problem with URL-Rewriting. At Startpage all Menues points to http://site.com/drupal/xyz. When i insert "index.php" between every menue opens how it should.

--> http://site.com/drupal/index.php/xyz