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Installation Overview

Try out DSpace 7 before you install

If you'd like to quickly try out DSpace 7 before a full installation, see Try out DSpace 7 for instructions on a quick install via Docker.

As of version 7 (and above), the DSpace application is split into a "frontend" (User Interface) and a "backend" (Server API).  Most institutions will want to install BOTH.  However, you can decide whether to run them on the same machine or separate machines.

  • The DSpace Frontend consists of a User Interface built on Angular.io.  It is a Node.js web application, i.e. once it is built/compiled, it only require Node.js to run. It cannot be run "standalone", as it requires a valid DSpace Backend to function.  The frontend provides all user-facing functionality.
  • The DSpace Backend consists of a Server API ("server" webapp), built on Spring Boot.  It is a Java web application. It can be run standalone, however it has no user interface.  The backend provides all machine-based interfaces, including the REST API, OAI-PMH, SWORD (v1 and v2) and RDF.

We recommend installing the Backend first, as the Frontend requires a valid Backend to run properly.

Installing the Backend (Server API)

Backend Requirements

UNIX-like OS or Microsoft Windows

  • UNIX-like operating system (Linux, HP/UX, Mac OSX, etc.) : Many distributions of Linux/Unix come with some of the dependencies below pre-installed or easily installed via updates.  You should consult your particular distribution's documentation or local system administrators to determine what is already available.
  • Microsoft Windows:  While DSpace can be run on Windows servers, most institutions tend to run it on a UNIX-like operating system.


Java JDK 11 or 17 (OpenJDK or Oracle JDK)

JDK17 support was first available in DSpace 7.2.  DSpace 7.1 or 7.0 only supported JDK 11.

Make sure to install the JDK and not just the JRE

DSpace requires the full JDK (Java Development Kit) be installed, rather than just the JRE (Java Runtime Environment).  So, please be sure that you are installing the full JDK and not just the JRE.


Only JDK11 and JDK 17 are fully supported

Older versions of Java are unsupported. This includes JDK v7-10.

Newer versions of Java may work (e.g. JDK v12-16), but we do not recommend running them in Production.  We highly recommend running only Java LTS (Long Term Support) releases in Production, as non-LTS releases may not receive ongoing security fixes. As of this DSpace release, JDK11 and JDK 17 are the two most recent Java LTS releases.  As soon as the next Java LTS release is available, we will analyze it for compatibility with this release of DSpace.  For more information on Java releases, see the Java roadmaps for Oracle and/or OpenJDK.


Apache Maven 3.3.x or above (Java build tool)

We recommend using the most recent version of Maven that you can, as newer releases may include performance improvements and security updates.  Maven 3.8.x and 3.6.x are known to work well.

Maven is necessary in the first stage of the build process to assemble the installation package for your DSpace instance. It gives you the flexibility to customize DSpace using the existing Maven projects found in the [dspace-source]/dspace/modules directory or by adding in your own Maven project to build the installation package for DSpace, and apply any custom interface "overlay" changes.

Maven can be downloaded from http://maven.apache.org/download.html   It is also provided via many operating system package managers.

Configuring a Maven Proxy

You can configure a proxy to use for some or all of your HTTP requests in Maven. The username and password are only required if your proxy requires basic authentication (note that later releases may support storing your passwords in a secured keystore‚ in the meantime, please ensure your settings.xml file (usually ${user.home}/.m2/settings.xml) is secured with permissions appropriate for your operating system).

Example:

<settings>
  .
  .
  <proxies>
   <proxy>
      <active>true</active>
      <protocol>http</protocol>
      <host>proxy.somewhere.com</host>
      <port>8080</port>
      <username>proxyuser</username>
      <password>somepassword</password>
      <nonProxyHosts>www.google.com|*.somewhere.com</nonProxyHosts>
    </proxy>
  </proxies>
  .
  .
</settings>


Apache Ant 1.10.x or later (Java build tool)

While Apache Ant recommends using v1.10.x for Java 11, we've also had some success with recent versions of 1.9.x (specifically v1.9.15 seems to work fine with Java 11). That said, earlier versions of v1.9.x are not compatible with Java 11.

Apache Ant is required for the second stage of the build process (deploying/installing the application). First, Maven is used to construct the installer ([dspace-source]/dspace/target/dspace-installer), after which Ant is used to install/deploy DSpace to the installation directory.

Ant can be downloaded from the following location: http://ant.apache.org   It is also provided via many operating system package managers.

Relational Database (PostgreSQL or Oracle)

PostgreSQL 11.x, 12.x or 13.x (with pgcrypto installed)
  • PostgreSQL can be downloaded from http://www.postgresql.org/.  It is also provided via many operating system package managers.
  • Install the pgcrypto extension.  It will also need to be enabled on your DSpace Database (see Installation instructions below for more info). The pgcrypto extension allows DSpace to create UUIDs (universally unique identifiers) for all objects in DSpace, which means that (internal) object identifiers are now globally unique and no longer tied to database sequences.
    • On most Linux operating systems (Ubuntu, Debian, RedHat), this extension is provided in the "postgresql-contrib" package in your package manager. So, ensure you've installed "postgresql-contrib".
    • On Windows, this extension should be provided automatically by the installer (check your "[PostgreSQL]/share/extension" folder for files starting with "pgcrypto")
  • Unicode (specifically UTF-8) support must be enabled (but this is enabled by default).
  • Once installed, you need to enable TCP/IP connections (DSpace uses JDBC):
    • In postgresql.conf: uncomment the line starting: listen_addresses = 'localhost'.  This is the default, in recent PostgreSQL releases, but you should at least check it.
    • Then tighten up security a bit by editing pg_hba.conf and adding this line:

      host dspace dspace 127.0.0.1 255.255.255.255 md5

      This should appear before any lines matching all databases, because the first matching rule governs.

    • Then restart PostgreSQL.
Oracle 12.2 or later (DEPRECATED)

Oracle will no longer be supported in 2023

Oracle support has been deprecated in DSpace. It will no longer be supported as of June/July 2023.  See https://github.com/DSpace/DSpace/issues/8214

We highly recommend all users install DSpace on PostrgreSQL (see above)

  • Details on acquiring Oracle can be downloaded from the following location: http://www.oracle.com/database/. You will need to create a database for DSpace. Make sure that the character set is one of the Unicode character sets. DSpace uses UTF-8 natively, and it is suggested that the Oracle database use the same character set. You will also need to create a user account for DSpace (e.g. dspace) and ensure that it has permissions to add and remove tables in the database. Refer to the Quick Installation for more details.
    • NOTE: If the database server is not on the same machine as DSpace, you must install the Oracle client to the DSpace server and point tnsnames.ora and listener.ora files to the database the Oracle server.

Apache Solr 8.x (full-text index/search service)

Solr 8.11.1 or above is recommended as all prior 8.x releases are vulnerable to CVE-2021-44228 (log4j critical vulnerability). If you must use a prior version of 8.x, make sure to add "-Dlog4j2.formatMsgNoLookups=true" to your SOLR_OPTS environment variable, see https://solr.apache.org/security.html#apache-solr-affected-by-apache-log4j-cve-2021-44228

Solr 9 is not yet fully supported, but can be used provided that you make minor modification to the out-of-the-box "search/conf/solrconfig.xml" that comes with DSpace 7.  See this below comment for details.

Make sure to install Solr with Authentication disabled (which is the default).  DSpace does not yet support authentication to Solr (see https://github.com/DSpace/DSpace/issues/3169).  Instead, we recommend placing Solr behind a firewall and/or ensuring port 8983 (which Solr runs on) is not available for public/anonymous access on the web. Solr only needs to be accessible to requests from the DSpace backend.

Solr can be obtained at the Apache Software Foundation site for Lucene and Solr.  You may wish to read portions of the quick-start tutorial to make yourself familiar with Solr's layout and operation.  Unpack a Solr .tgz or .zip archive in a place where you keep software that is not handled by your operating system's package management tools, and arrange to have it running whenever DSpace is running.  You should ensure that Solr's index directories will have plenty of room to grow.  You should also ensure that port 8983 is not in use by something else, or configure Solr to use a different port.

If you are looking for a good place to put Solr, consider /opt or /usr/local.  You can simply unpack Solr in one place and use it.  Or you can configure Solr to keep its indexes elsewhere, if you need to – see the Solr documentation for how to do this.

It is not necessary to dedicate a Solr instance to DSpace, if you already have one and want to use it.  Simply copy DSpace's cores to a place where they will be discovered by Solr.  See below.

Servlet Engine (Apache Tomcat 9, Jetty, Caucho Resin or equivalent)

Only Tomcat 9 is supported at this time. Tomcat 10 results in a display issue in the backend's Hal Browser.  See https://github.com/DSpace/DSpace/issues/8173 for more details

  • Apache Tomcat 9. Tomcat can be downloaded from the following location: http://tomcat.apache.org.    It is also provided via many operating system package managers.
    • The Tomcat owner (i.e. the user that Tomcat runs as) must have read/write access to the DSpace installation directory (i.e. [dspace])There are a few common ways this may be achieved:
      • One option is to specifically give the Tomcat user (often named "tomcat") ownership of the [dspace] directories, for example:

        # Change [dspace] and all subfolders to be owned by "tomcat"
        chown -R tomcat:tomcat [dspace]
      • Another option is to have Tomcat itself run as a new user named "dspace" (see installation instructions below).  Some operating systems make modifying the Tomcat "run as" user easily modifiable via an environment variable named TOMCAT_USER.  This option may be more desirable if you have multiple Tomcat instances running, and you do not want all of them to run under the same Tomcat owner.
    • On Debian systems, you may also need to modify or override the "tomcat.service" file to specify the DSpace installation directory in the list of ReadWritePaths.  For example:

      # Replace [dspace] with the full path of your DSpace install
      ReadWritePaths=[dspace]
    • You need to ensure that Tomcat a) has enough memory to run DSpace, and b) uses UTF-8 as its default file encoding for international character support. So ensure in your startup scripts (etc) that the following environment variable is set: JAVA_OPTS="-Xmx512M -Xms64M -Dfile.encoding=UTF-8"
    • Modifications in [tomcat]/conf/server.xml : You also need to alter Tomcat's default configuration to support searching and browsing of multi-byte UTF-8 correctly. You need to add a configuration option to the <Connector> element in [tomcat]/config/server.xml: URIEncoding="UTF-8" e.g. if you're using the default Tomcat config, it should read:

      <!-- Define a non-SSL HTTP/1.1 Connector on port 8080 -->
      <Connector port="8080"
                    minSpareThreads="25"
                    enableLookups="false"
                    redirectPort="8443"
                    connectionTimeout="20000"
                    disableUploadTimeout="true"
                    URIEncoding="UTF-8"/>
      

      You may change the port from 8080 by editing it in the file above, and by setting the variable CONNECTOR_PORT in server.xml.  You should set the URIEncoding even if you are running Tomcat behind a proxy (Apache HTTPD, Nginx, etc.) via AJP.

  • Jetty or Caucho Resin 
    • DSpace 7 has not been tested with Jetty or Caucho Resin, after the switch to Java 11
    • Older versions of DSpace were able to run on a Tomcat-equivalent servlet Engine, such as Jetty (https://www.eclipse.org/jetty/) or Caucho Resin (http://www.caucho.com/). If you choose to use a different servlet container, please ensure that it supports Servlet Spec 3.1 (or above).
    • Jetty and Resin are configured for correct handling of UTF-8 by default.

(Optional) IP to City Database for Location-based Statistics

Optionally, if you wish to record the geographic locations of clients in DSpace usage statistics records, you will need to install (and regularly update) one of the following:

  • Either, a copy of MaxMind's GeoLite City database (in MMDB format)
    • NOTE: Installing MaxMind GeoLite2 is free.  However, you must sign up for a (free) MaxMind account in order to obtain a license key to use the GeoLite2 database.
    • You may download GeoLite2 directly from MaxMind, or many Linux distributions provide the geoipupdate tool directly via their package manager.  You will still need to configure your license key prior to usage.
    • Once the "GeoLite2-City.mmdb" database file is installed on your system,  you will need to configure its location as the value of usage-statistics.dbfile in your local.cfg configuration file
    • See the "Managing the City Database File" section of SOLR Statistics for more information about using a City Database with DSpace.
  • Or, you can alternatively use/install DB-IP's City Lite database (in MMDB format)
    • This database is also free to use, but does not require an account to download.
    • Once the "dbip-city-lite.mmdb" database file is installed on your system,  you will need to configure its location as the value of usage-statistics.dbfile in your local.cfg configuration file
    • See the "Managing the City Database File" section of SOLR Statistics for more information about using a City Database with DSpace.

Git (code version control)

Currently, there is a known bug in DSpace where a third-party Maven Module expects git to be available (in order to support the ./dspace version commandline tool).  We are working on a solution within this ticket: https://github.com/DSpace/DSpace/issues/6772

For the time being, you can work around this problem by installing Git locally: https://git-scm.com/downloads

Backend Installation

  1. Install all the Backend Requirements listed above.
  2. Create a DSpace operating system user (optional) .  As noted in the prerequisites above, Tomcat (or Jetty, etc) must run as an operating system user account that has full read/write access to the DSpace installation directory (i.e. [dspace]).  Either you must ensure the Tomcat owner also owns [dspace], OR you can create a new "dspace" user account, and ensure that Tomcat also runs as that account:

    useradd -m dspace

    The choice that makes the most sense for you will probably depend on how you installed your servlet container (Tomcat/Jetty/etc).  If you installed it from source, you will need to create a user account to run it, and that account can be named anything, e.g. 'dspace'.  If you used your operating system's package manager to install the container, then a user account should have been created as part of that process and it will be much easier to use that account than to try to change it.

  3. Download the latest DSpace release from the DSpace GitHub Repository. You can choose to either download the zip or tar.gz file provided by GitHub, or you can use "git" to checkout the appropriate tag (e.g. dspace-7.2) or branch.
  4. Unpack the DSpace software. After downloading the software, based on the compression file format, choose one of the following methods to unpack your software:
    1. Zip file. If you downloaded dspace-7.2.zip do the following:

      unzip dspace-7.2.zip
    2. .gz file. If you downloaded dspace-7.2.tar.gz do the following:

      gunzip -c dspace-7.2.tar.gz | tar -xf -

      For ease of reference, we will refer to the location of this unzipped version of the DSpace release as [dspace-source] in the remainder of these instructions. After unpacking the file, the user may wish to change the ownership of the dspace-7.x folder to the "dspace" user. (And you may need to change the group).

  5. Database Setup
    • PostgreSQL:
      • Create a dspace database user (this user can have any name, but we'll assume you name it "dspace"). This is entirely separate from the dspace operating-system user created above:

        createuser --username=postgres --no-superuser --pwprompt dspace

        You will be prompted (twice) for a password for the new dspace user.  Then you'll be prompted for the password of the PostgreSQL superuser (postgres).

      • Create a dspace database, owned by the dspace PostgreSQL user. Similar to the previous step, this can only be done by a "superuser" account in PostgreSQL (e.g. postgres):

        createdb --username=postgres --owner=dspace --encoding=UNICODE dspace

        You will be prompted for the password of the PostgreSQL superuser (postgres).

      • Finally, you MUST enable the pgcrypto extension on your new dspace database.  Again, this can only be enabled by a "superuser" account (e.g. postgres)

        # Login to the database as a superuser, and enable the pgcrypto extension on this database
        psql --username=postgres dspace -c "CREATE EXTENSION pgcrypto;"

        The "CREATE EXTENSION" command should return with no result if it succeeds. If it fails or throws an error, it is likely you are missing the required pgcrypto extension (see Database Prerequisites above).

        • Alternative method: How to enable pgcrypto via a separate database schema. While the above method of enabling pgcrypto is perfectly fine for the majority of users, there may be some scenarios where a database administrator would prefer to install extensions into a database schema that is separate from the DSpace tables. Developers also may wish to install pgcrypto into a separate schema if they plan to "clean" (recreate) their development database frequently. Keeping extensions in a separate schema from the DSpace tables will ensure developers would NOT have to continually re-enable the extension each time you run a "./dspace database clean". If you wish to install pgcrypto in a separate schema here's how to do that:

          # Login to the database as a superuser
          psql --username=postgres dspace
          # Create a new schema in this database named "extensions" (or whatever you want to name it)
          CREATE SCHEMA extensions;
          # Enable this extension in this new schema
          CREATE EXTENSION pgcrypto SCHEMA extensions;
          # Grant rights to call functions in the extensions schema to your dspace user
          GRANT USAGE ON SCHEMA extensions TO dspace;
          
          
          # Append "extensions" on the current session's "search_path" (if it doesn't already exist in search_path)
          # The "search_path" config is the list of schemas that Postgres will use
          SELECT set_config('search_path',current_setting('search_path') || ',extensions',false) WHERE current_setting('search_path') !~ '(^|,)extensions(,|$)';
          # Verify the current session's "search_path" and make sure it's correct
          SHOW search_path;
          # Now, update the "dspace" Database to use the same "search_path" (for all future sessions) as we've set for this current session (i.e. via set_config() above)
          ALTER DATABASE dspace SET search_path FROM CURRENT;
    • Oracle:
      • Setting up DSpace to use Oracle is a bit different now. You will need still need to get a copy of the Oracle JDBC driver, but instead of copying it into a lib directory you will need to install it into your local Maven repository. (You'll need to download it first from this location: http://www.oracle.com/technetwork/database/enterprise-edition/jdbc-112010-090769.html.) Run the following command (all on one line):

        mvn install:install-file
            -Dfile=ojdbc6.jar
            -DgroupId=com.oracle
            -DartifactId=ojdbc6
            -Dversion=11.2.0.4.0
            -Dpackaging=jar
            -DgeneratePom=true
        
      • You need to compile DSpace with an Oracle driver (ojdbc6.jar) corresponding to your Oracle version - update the version in [dspace-source]/pom.xml  E.g.:

        <dependency>
          <groupId>com.oracle</groupId>
          <artifactId>ojdbc6</artifactId>
          <version>11.2.0.4.0</version>
        </dependency>
        
      • Create a database for DSpace. Make sure that the character set is one of the Unicode character sets. DSpace uses UTF-8 natively, and it is required that the Oracle database use the same character set. Create a user account for DSpace (e.g. dspace) and ensure that it has permissions to add and remove tables in the database.
      • NOTE: You will need to ensure the proper db.* settings are specified in your local.cfg file (see next step), as the defaults for all of these settings assuming a PostgreSQL database backend.

        db.url = jdbc:oracle:thin:@host:port/SID
        # e.g. db.url = jdbc:oracle:thin:@//localhost:1521/xe
        # NOTE: in db.url, SID is the SID of your database defined in tnsnames.ora
        # the default Oracle port is 1521
        # You may also use a full SID definition, e.g.
        # db.url = jdbc:oracle:thin:@(description=(address_list=(address=(protocol=TCP)(host=localhost)(port=1521)))(connect_data=(service_name=DSPACE)))
        
        # Oracle driver and dialect
        db.driver = oracle.jdbc.OracleDriver
        db.dialect = org.hibernate.dialect.Oracle10gDialect
        
        # Specify DB username, password and schema to use
        db.username =
        db.password =
        db.schema = ${db.username}
        # For Oracle, schema is equivalent to the username of your database account,
        # so this may be set to ${db.username} in most scenarios
      • Later, during the Maven build step, don't forget to specify mvn -Ddb.name=oracle package

  6. Initial Configuration (local.cfg):  Create your own [dspace-source]/dspace/config/local.cfg configuration file.  You may wish to simply copy the provided [dspace-source]/dspace/config/local.cfg.EXAMPLE. This local.cfg file can be used to store any configuration changes that you wish to make which are local to your installation (see local.cfg configuration file documentation). ANY setting may be copied into this local.cfg file from the dspace.cfg or any other *.cfg file in order to override the default setting (see note below).  For the initial installation of DSpace, there are some key settings you'll likely want to override.  Those are provided in the [dspace-source]/dspace/config/local.cfg.EXAMPLE. (NOTE: Settings followed with an asterisk (*) are highly recommended, while all others are optional during initial installation and may be customized at a later time.)
    • dspace.dir* - must be set to the [dspace] (installation) directory  (NOTE: On Windows be sure to use forward slashes for the directory path!  For example: "C:/dspace" is a valid path for Windows.)
    • dspace.server.url* - complete URL of this DSpace backend (including port and any subpath).  Do not end with '/'.  For example: http://localhost:8080/server
    • dspace.ui.url* - complete URL of the DSpace frontend (including port and any subpath). REQUIRED for the REST API to fully trust requests from the DSpace frontend.  Do not end with '/'. For example: http://localhost:4000
    • dspace.name - Human-readable, "proper" name of your server, e.g. "My Digital Library".
    • solr.server* - complete URL of the Solr server. DSpace makes use of Solr for indexing purposes.  http://localhost:8983/solr unless you changed the port or installed Solr on some other host.
    • default.language - Default language for all metadata values (defaults to "en_US")
    • db.url* - The full JDBC URL to your database (examples are provided in the local.cfg.EXAMPLE)
    • db.driver* - Which database driver to use, based on whether you are using PostgreSQL or Oracle
    • db.dialect* - Which database dialect to use, based on whether you are using PostgreSQL or Oracle
    • db.username* - the database username used in the previous step.
    • db.password* - the database password used in the previous step.
    • db.schema* - the database schema to use (examples are provided in the local.cfg.EXAMPLE)
    • mail.server - fully-qualified domain name of your outgoing mail server.
    • mail.from.address - the "From:" address to put on email sent by DSpace.
    • mail.feedback.recipient - mailbox for feedback mail.
    • mail.admin - mailbox for DSpace site administrator.
    • alert.recipient - mailbox for server errors/alerts (not essential but very useful!)
    • registration.notify- mailbox for emails when new users register (optional)

      Your local.cfg file can override ANY settings from other *.cfg files in DSpace

      The provided local.cfg.EXAMPLE only includes a small subset of the configuration settings available with DSpace. It provides a good starting point for your own local.cfg file.

      However, you should be aware that ANY configuration can now be copied into your local.cfg to override the default settings.  This includes ANY of the settings/configurations in:

      • The primary dspace.cfg file ([dspace]/config/dspace.cfg)
      • Any of the module configuration files ([dspace]/config/modules/*.cfg files)
      • Any of the Spring Boot settings ([dspace-src]/dspace-server-webapp/src/main/resources/application.properties)

      Individual settings may also be commented out or removed in your local.cfg, in order to re-enable default settings.

      See the Configuration Reference section for more details.

  7. DSpace Directory: Create the directory for the DSpace backend installation (i.e. [dspace]). As root (or a user with appropriate permissions), run:

    mkdir [dspace]
    chown dspace [dspace]

    (Assuming the dspace UNIX username.)

  8. Build the Installation Package: As the dspace UNIX user, generate the DSpace installation package.

    cd [dspace-source]
    mvn package
    

    Building with Oracle Database Support

    Without any extra arguments, the DSpace installation package is initialized for PostgreSQL. If you want to use Oracle instead, you should build the DSpace installation package as follows:
    mvn -Ddb.name=oracle package

  9. Install DSpace Backend: As the dspace UNIX user, install DSpace to [dspace]:

    cd [dspace-source]/dspace/target/dspace-installer
    ant fresh_install

    To see a complete list of build targets, run: ant help The most likely thing to go wrong here is the test of your database connection. See the Common Installation Issues Section below for more details.

  10. Initialize your Database: While this step is optional (as the DSpace database should auto-initialize itself on first startup), it's always good to verify one last time that your database connection is working properly.  To initialize the database run:

    [dspace]/bin/dspace database migrate
    1. After running this script, it's a good idea to run "./dspace database info" to check that your database has been fully initialized.  A fully initialized database should list the state of all migrations as either "Success" or "Out of Order".  If any migrations have failed or are still listed as "Pending", then you need to check your "dspace.log" for possible "ERROR" messages.  If any errors appeared, you will need to resolve them before continuing.
  11. Deploy Server web application: The DSpace backend consists of a single "server" webapp (in [dspace]/webapps/server).  You need to deploy this webapp into your Servlet Container (e.g. Tomcat).  Generally, there are two options (or techniques) which you could use...either configure Tomcat to find the DSpace "server" webapp, or copy the "server" webapp into Tomcat's own webapps folder.
    • Technique A. Tell your Tomcat/Jetty/Resin installation where to find your DSpace web application(s). As an example, in the directory [tomcat]/conf/Catalina/localhost you could add files similar to the following (but replace [dspace]with your installation location):

      DEFINE A CONTEXT PATH FOR DSpace Server webapp: server.xml
      <?xml version='1.0'?>
      <Context
      	docBase="[dspace]/webapps/server"/>

      The name of the file (not including the suffix ".xml") will be the name of the context, so for example server.xml defines the context at http://host:8080/server.  To define the root context (http://host:8080/), name that context's file ROOT.xml.   Optionally, you can also choose to install the old, deprecated "rest" webapp if you

    • Technique B. Simple and complete. You copy only (or all) of the DSpace Web application(s) you wish to use from the [dspace]/webapps directory to the appropriate directory in your Tomcat/Jetty/Resin installation. For example:
      cp -R [dspace]/webapps/* [tomcat]/webapps (This will copy all the web applications to Tomcat).
      cp -R [dspace]/webapps/server [tomcat]/webapps (This will copy only the Server web application to Tomcat.)

      To define the root context (http://host:8080/), name that context's directory ROOT.

  12. Optionally, also install the deprecated DSpace 6.x REST API web application.  If you previously used the DSpace 6.x REST API, for backwards compatibility the old, deprecated "rest" webapp is still available to install (in [dspace]/webapps/rest). It is NOT used by the DSpace frontend.  So, most users should skip this step.
  13. Copy Solr cores:  DSpace installation creates a set of four empty Solr cores already configured. 

    1. Copy them from [dspace]/solr to the place where your Solr instance will discover them. For example:

      # [solr] is the location where Solr is installed.
      # NOTE: On Debian systems the configsets may be under /var/solr/data/configsets
      cp -R [dspace]/solr/* [solr]/server/solr/configsets
      
      # Make sure everything is owned by the system user who owns Solr
      # Usually this is a 'solr' user account
      # See https://solr.apache.org/guide/8_1/taking-solr-to-production.html#create-the-solr-user
      chown -R solr:solr [solr]/server/solr/configsets
    2. Start (or re-start) Solr.  For example:

      [solr]/bin/solr restart


    3. You can check the status of Solr and your new DSpace cores by using its administrative web interface.  Browse to ${solr.server} (e.g. http://localhost:8983/solr/) to see if Solr is running well, then look at the cores by selecting (on the left) Core Admin or using the Core Selector drop list.

      1. For example, to test that your "search" core is setup properly, try accessing the URL ${solr.server}/search/select. It should run an empty query against the "search" core, returning an empty JSON result. If it returns an error, then that means your "search" core is missing or not installed properly.
  14. Create an Administrator Account:  Create an initial administrator account from the command line:

    [dspace]/bin/dspace create-administrator


  15. Initial Startup!  Now the moment of truth! Start up (or restart) Tomcat/Jetty/Resin.
    1. REST API Interface - (e.g.)  http://dspace.myu.edu:8080/server/
    2. OAI-PMH Interface - (e.g.)  http://dspace.myu.edu:8080/server/oai/request?verb=Identify
    3. For an example of what the default backend looks like, visit the Demo Backend: https://api7.dspace.org/server/
  16. Production Installation (adding HTTPS support): Running the DSpace Backend on HTTP & port 8080 is only usable for local development environments (where you are running the UI and REST API from the same machine, and only accessing them via localhost URLs).  If you want to run DSpace in Production, you MUST run the backend with HTTPS support (otherwise logins will not work outside of your local domain).
    1. For HTTPS support, we recommend installing either Apache HTTPD or Nginx, configuring SSL at that level, and proxying all requests to your Tomcat installation.  Keep in mind, if you want to host both the DSpace Backend and Frontend on the same server, you can use one installation of Apache HTTPD or Nginx to manage HTTPS/SSL and proxy to both.
    2. These instructions are specific to Apache HTTPD, but a similar setup can be achieved with Nginx
      1. Install Apache HTTPD, e.g. sudo apt install apache2
      2. Install the mod_proxy and mod_proxy_ajp modules, e.g. sudo a2enmod proxy; sudo a2enmod proxy_ajp
        1. Alternatively, you can choose to use mod_proxy_http to create an http proxy.  A separate example is commented out below

      3. Restart Apache to enable
      4. For mod_proxy_ajp to communicate with Tomcat, you'll need to enable Tomcat's AJP connector in your Tomcat's server.xml:

        <Connector protocol="AJP/1.3" port="8009" redirectPort="8443" URIEncoding="UTF-8" />
      5. Now, setup a new VirtualHost for your site (using HTTPS / port 443) which proxies all requests to Tomcat's AJP connector (running on port 8009)

        <VirtualHost _default_:443>
            .. setup your host how you want, including log settings...
        
            SSLEngine on
            SSLCertificateFile [full-path-to-PEM-cert]
            SSLCertificateKeyFile [full-path-to-cert-KEY]
            # LetsEncrypt certificates (and possibly others) may require a chain file be specified
            # in order for the UI / Node.js to validate the HTTPS connection.
            #SSLCertificateChainFile [full-path-to-chain-file]
        
            # Proxy all HTTPS requests to "/server" from Apache to Tomcat via AJP connector
            ProxyPass /server ajp://localhost:8009/server
            ProxyPassReverse /server ajp://localhost:8009/server
        
            # If you would rather use mod_proxy_http as an http proxy to port 8080
            # then use these settings instead
            #ProxyPass /server http://localhost:8080/server
            #ProxyPassReverse /server http://localhost:8080/server
            # When using mod_proxy_http, you need to also ensure the X-Forwarded-Proto header is sent
            # to tell DSpace it is behind HTTPS, otherwise some URLs may continue to use HTTP 
            # (requires installing/enabling mod_headers)
            #RequestHeader set X-Forwarded-Proto https
        </VirtualHost>
    3. After switching to HTTPS, make sure to go back and update the URLs (e.g. dspace.server.url) in your local.cfg to match the new URL of your backend.  This will require briefly rebooting Tomcat.

Installing the Frontend (User Interface)

Below instructions are specific to 7.2 (or later)

The Frontend Instructions below are specific to 7.2 or later.  For Frontend Installation instructions for 7.0 or 7.1, see 7.0-7.1 Frontend Installation

Frontend Requirements

UNIX-like OS or Microsoft Windows

  • UNIX-like operating system (Linux, HP/UX, Mac OSX, etc.) : Many distributions of Linux/Unix come with some of the dependencies below pre-installed or easily installed via updates.  You should consult your particular distribution's documentation or local system administrators to determine what is already available.
  • Microsoft Windows:  While DSpace can be run on Windows servers, most institutions tend to run it on a UNIX-like operating system.

Node.js (v14.x or v16.x)

  • Node.js can be found at https://nodejs.org/.  It may be available through your Linux distribution's package manager.  We recommend running a Long Term Support (LTS) version (even numbered releases).  Non-LTS versions (odd numbered releases) are not recommended.
  • Node.js is a Javascript runtime that also provides npm (Node Package Manager). It is used to both build and run the frontend.
  • NOTE: Node v12 also will work. However, that version is now end-of-life. We recommend updating to Node 14 or 16.

Yarn (v1.x)

  • Yarn v1.x is available at https://classic.yarnpkg.com/.  It can usually be install via NPM (or through your Linux distribution's package manager).  We do NOT currently support Yarn v2.

    # You may need to run this command using "sudo" if you don't have proper privileges
    npm install --global yarn
  • Yarn is used to build the frontend.

PM2 (or another Process Manager for Node.js apps) (optional, but recommended for Production)

  • In Production scenarios, we highly recommend starting/stopping the User Interface using a Node.js process manager. There are several available, but our current favorite is PM2.  The rest of this installation guide assumes you are using PM2.
  • PM2 is very easily installed via NPM

    # You may need to run this command using "sudo" if you don't have proper privileges
    npm install --global pm2

DSpace 7.x Backend (see above)

  • The DSpace User Interface (Frontend) cannot function without an installed DSpace Backend.  Follow the instructions above.
  • The Frontend and Backend do not need to be installed on the same machine/server.  They may be installed on separate machines as long as the two machines can connect to one another via HTTP or HTTPS.

Frontend Installation

Below instructions are specific to 7.2 (or later)

The Frontend Instructions below are specific to 7.2 or later.  For Frontend Installation instructions for 7.0 or 7.1, see 7.0-7.1 Frontend Installation

  1. Download Code (to [dspace-angular]): Download the latest dspace-angular release from the DSpace GitHub repository. You can choose to either download the zip or tar.gz file provided by GitHub, or you can use "git" to checkout the appropriate tag (e.g. dspace-7.2) or branch.
    1. NOTE: For the rest of these instructions, we'll refer to the source code location as [dspace-angular].
  2. Install Dependencies: Install all required local dependencies by running the following from within the unzipped [dspace-angular] directory

    # change directory to our repo
    cd [dspace-angular]
    
    # install the local dependencies
    yarn install
  3. Build/Compile: Build the User Interface for Production. This builds source code (under [dspace-angular]/src/) to create a compiled version of the User Interface in the [dspace-angular]/dist folder.  This /dist folder is what we will deploy & run to start the UI.

    yarn build:prod
    1. You only need to rebuild the UI application if you change source code (under [dspace-angular]/src/).  Simply changing the configurations (e.g. config.prod.yml, see below) do not require a rebuild, but only require restarting the UI.
  4. Deployment (to [dspace-ui-deploy]): Choose/Create a directory on your server where you wish to run the compiled User Interface. We'll call this [dspace-ui-deploy].

    [dspace-ui-deploy] vs [dspace-angular]

    [dspace-angular] is the directory where you've downloaded and built the UI source code (per the instructions above).  For deployment/running the UI, we recommend creating an entirely separate [dspace-ui-deploy] directory. This keeps your running, production User Interface separate from your source code directory and also minimizes downtime when rebuilding your UI.  You may even choose to deploy to a [dspace-ui-deploy] directory on a different server (and copy the /dist directory over via FTP or similar).

    If you are installing the UI for the first time, or just want a simple setup, you can choose to have [dspace-ui-deploy] and [dspace-angular] be the same directory. This would mean you don't have to copy your /dist folder to another location. However, the downside is that your running site will become unresponsive whenever you do a re-build/re-compile (i.e. rerun "yarn build:prod") as this build process will first delete the [dspace-angular]/dist directory before rebuilding it.

    1. Copy the entire [dspace-angular]/dist/ folder to this location. For example:

      cp -r [dspace-angular]/dist [dspace-ui-deploy]

       

    2. WARNING: At this time, you MUST copy the entire "dist" folder and make sure NOT to rename it.  Therefore, the directory structure should look like this: 

      Contents of [dspace-ui-deploy] folder
      [dspace-ui-deploy]
          /dist
             /browser (compiled client-side code)
             /server  (compiled server-side code, including "main.js")
          /config     (Optionally created in the "Configuration" step below)
             /config.prod.yml (Optionally created in the "Configuration" step below)
    3. NOTE: the OS account which runs the UI via Node.js (see below) MUST have write privileges to the [dspace-ui-deploy] directory (because on startup, the runtime configuration is written to [dspace-ui-deploy]/dist/browser/assets/config.json)
  5. Configuration: You have two options for User Interface Configuration, Environment Variables or YAML-based configuration (config.prod.yml).  Choose one!

    1. YAML configuration: Create a "config.prod.yml" at [dspace-ui-deploy]/config/config.prod.yml.  You may wish to use the [dspace-angular]/config/config.example.yml as a starting point. This config.prod.yml file can be used to override any of the default configurations listed in the config.example.yml (in that same directory).  At a minimum this file MUST include a "rest" section (and may also include a "ui" section),  similar to the following (keep in mind, you only need to include settings that you need to modify).  

      Example config.prod.yml
      # The "ui" section defines where you want Node.js to run/respond. It often is a *localhost* (non-public) URL, especially if you are using a Proxy.
      # In this example, we are setting up our UI to just use localhost, port 4000. 
      # This is a common setup for when you want to use Apache or Nginx to handle HTTPS and proxy requests to Node on port 4000
      ui:
        ssl: false
        host: localhost
        port: 4000
        nameSpace: /
      
      # This example is valid if your Backend is publicly available at https://api.mydspace.edu/server/
      # The REST settings MUST correspond to the primary/public URL of the backend. Usually, this means they must be kept in sync
      # with the value of "dspace.server.url" in the backend's local.cfg
      rest:
        ssl: true
        host: api.mydspace.edu
        port: 443
        nameSpace: /server
    2. Environment variables: Every configuration in the UI may be specified via an Environment Variable. See Configuration Override in the User Interface Configuration documentation for more details. For example, the below environment variables provide the same setup as the config.prod.yml example above.

      Example Environment Variables
      # All environment variables MUST 
      # (1) be prefixed with "DSPACE_"
      # (2) use underscores as separators (no dots allowed), and 
      # (3) use all uppercase
      
      # "ui" section
      DSPACE_UI_SSL = false
      DSPACE_UI_HOST = localhost
      DSPACE_UI_PORT = 4000
      DSPACE_UI_NAMESPACE = /
      
      # "rest" section
      DSPACE_REST_SSL = true
      DSPACE_REST_HOST = api.mydspace.edu
      DSPACE_REST_PORT = 443
      DSPACE_REST_NAMESPACE = /server
      1. NOTE: When using PM2, some may find it easier to use Environment variables, as it allows you to specify DSpace UI configs within your PM2 configuration. See PM2 instructions below.

    3. Configuration Hints:
      1. See the User Interface Configuration documentation for a list of all available configurations.
      2. In the "ui" section above, you may wish to start with "ssl: false" and "port: 4000" just to be certain that everything else is working properly before  adding HTTPS support. KEEP IN MIND, we highly recommend always using HTTPS for Production. (See section on HTTPS below)
      3. (Optionally) Test the connection to your REST API from the UI from the command-line.  This is not required, but it can sometimes help you discover immediate configuration issues if the test fails.
        1. If you are using YAML configs, copy your config.prod.yml back into your source code folder at [dspace-angular]/config/config.prod.yml 
        2. From [dspace-angular], run yarn test:rest This script will attempt a basic Node.js connection to the REST API that is configured in your "config.prod.yml" file and validate the response.
        3. A successful connection should return a 200 Response and all JSON validation checks should return "true"
        4. If you receive a connection error or different response code, you MUST fix your REST API before the UI will be able to work.  See also the "Common Installation Issues" below.  If you receive an SSL error, see "Using a Self-Signed SSL Certificate causes the Frontend to not be able to access the Backend"
  6. Start up the User Interface:  The compiled User Interface only requires Node.js to run.  However, most users may want to use PM2 (or a similar Node.js process manager) in Production to provide easier logging and restart tools.
    1. Quick Start: To quickly startup / test the User Interface, you can just use Node.js.  This is only recommended for quickly testing the UI is working, as no logs are available.

      # You MUST start the UI from within the deployment directory
      cd [dspace-ui-deploy]
      
      # Run the "server/main.js" file to startup the User Interface
      node ./dist/server/main.js
      
      # Stop the UI by killing it via Ctrl+C
    2. Run via PM2: Using PM2 (or a different Node.js process manager) is highly recommended for Production scenarios. Here's an example of a Production setup of PM2.
      1. First you need to create a PM2 JSON configuration file which will run the User Interface.  This file can be named anything & placed where ever you like, but you may want to save it to your deployment directory (e.g. [dspace-ui-deploy]/dspace-ui.json). 

        dspace-ui.json
        {
            "apps": [
                {
                   "name": "dspace-ui",
                   "cwd": "/full/path/to/dspace-ui-deploy",
                   "script": "dist/server/main.js",
                   "env": {
                      "NODE_ENV": "production"
                   }
                }
            ]
        }
        1. NOTE: The "cwd" setting MUST correspond to your [dspace-ui-deploy] folder path.
        2. NOTE #2: If you wanted to configure your UI using Environment Variables, specify those Environment Variables under the "env" section.  For example:  

          Configuration via Environment Variables
          "env": {
             "NODE_ENV": "production",
             "DSPACE_REST_SSL": "true",
             "DSPACE_REST_HOST": "api7.dspace.org",
             "DSPACE_REST_PORT": "443",
             "DSPACE_REST_NAMESPACE": "/server"
          }
        3. NOTE #3: If you are using Windows, there are two other rules to keep in mind in this JSON configuration. First, all paths must include double backslashes (e.g. "C:\\dspace-ui-deploy").  Second, "cluster" mode is required.  Here's an example configuration for Windows:

          dspace-ui.json (for Windows)
          {
              "apps": [
                  {
                     "name": "dspace-ui",
                     "cwd": "C:\\full\\path\\to\\dspace-ui-deploy",
                     "script": "dist\\server\\main.js",
                     "exec_mode": "cluster",
                     "env": {
                        "NODE_ENV": "production"
                     }
                  }
              ]
          }
      2. Now, start the application using PM2 using the configuration file you created in the previous step

        # In this example, we are assuming the config is named "dspace-ui.json"
        pm2 start dspace-ui.json
        
        # To see the logs, you'd run
        # pm2 logs
        
        # To stop it, you'd run
        # pm2 stop dspace-ui.json
        
        # If you need to change your PM2 configs, delete the old config and restart
        # pm2 delete dspace-ui.json
      3. For more PM2 commands see https://pm2.keymetrics.io/docs/usage/quick-start/
      4. HINT: You may also want to install/configure pm2-logrotate to ensure that PM2's log folder doesn't fill up over time.
      5. Did PM2 not work or throw an immediate error? It's likely that something in your UI installation or configuration is incorrect.  Check the PM2 logs ("pm2 logs") first for errors. If the problem is not obvious, try to see if you can run the UI using the "Quick Start" method (using just Node.js) instead. Once "Quick Start" is working, try PM2 again.
  7. Test it out: At this point, the User Interface should be available at the URL you configured!
    1. For an example of what the default frontend looks like, visit the Demo Frontend: https://demo7.dspace.org/ 
    2. If the UI fails to start or throws errors, it's likely a configuration issue.  See Commons Installation Issues below for common error messages you may see and how to resolve them.
    3. If you have an especially difficult issue to debug, you may wish to stop PM2. Instead, try running the UI via the "Quick Start" method (using just Node.js).  This command might provide a more specific error message to you, if PM2 is not giving enough information back.
  8. Add HTTPS support: For HTTPS (port 443) support, you have two options
    1. (Recommended) You can install either Apache HTTPD or Nginx , configuring SSL at that level, and proxy requests to PM2 (still running on port 4000).  This is our current recommended approach. Plus, as a bonus, if you want to host the UI and Backend on the same server, you can use just one Apache HTTPD (or Nginx) to proxy to both. These instructions are specific to Apache.
      1. Install Apache HTTPD, e.g. sudo apt install apache2
      2. Install the mod_proxy and mod_proxy_http modules, e.g. sudo a2enmod proxy; sudo a2enmod proxy_http
      3. Restart Apache to enable
      4. Now, setup a new VirtualHost for your site (preferably using HTTPS / port 443) which proxies all requests to PM2 running on port 4000.

        <VirtualHost _default_:443>
            .. setup your host how you want, including log settings...
        
            SSLEngine on
            SSLCertificateFile [full-path-to-PEM-cert]
            SSLCertificateKeyFile [full-path-to-cert-KEY]
        
            # Proxy all HTTPS requests from Apache to PM2 on port 4000
            # NOTE that this proxy URL must match the "ui" settings in your config.prod.yml
            ProxyPass / http://localhost:4000/
            ProxyPassReverse / http://localhost:4000/
        </VirtualHost>
      5. Because you are using a proxy for HTTPS support, in your User Interface Configuration, your "ui" settings will still have "ssl: false" and "port: 4000".  This is perfectly OK!
      6. However, to force the backend (REST API) to use the new HTTPS URL, you should update your backend's "local.cfg" to have "dspace.ui.url = https://[full-address-of-proxy]"  (e.g. https://my.dspace.edu)
    2. (Alternatively) You can use the basic HTTPS support built into our UI and Node server.  (This may currently be better for non-Production environments as it has not been well tested) 
      1. Create a [dspace-ui-deploy]/config/ssl/ folder and add a key.pem and cert.pem to that folder (they must have those exact names)
      2. In your User Interface Configuration, go back and update the following:
        1. Set "ui > ssl" to true
        2. Update "ui > port" to be 443
          1. In order to run Node/PM2 on port 443, you also will likely need to provide node with special permissions, like in this example.
      3. Restart the UI
      4. Keep in mind, while this setup is simple, you may not have the same level of detailed, Production logs as you would with Apache HTTPD or Nginx

What Next?

After a successful installation, you may want to take a closer look at

If you've run into installation problems, you may want to...

Common Installation Issues

Troubleshoot an error or find detailed error messages

See the Troubleshoot an error guide, look for the section on "DSpace 7.x".  This will provide you hints on locating error messages both in the User Interface (frontend) and in the REST API (backend)

User Interface starts to load but then spins (never fully loads)

Chances are your User Interface (UI) is throwing an error or receiving an unexpected response from the REST API backend.  Since the UI is Javascript based, it runs entirely in your browser.  That means the error it's hitting is most easily viewed in your browser (and in fact the error may never appear in log files).  

See the Troubleshoot an error page, look for the section on "DSpace 7.x".  It has a guide for locating UI error messages in your browser's Developer Tools.

"500 Service Unavailable" from the User Interface

This error is saying that the frontend is working, but it is unable to communicate with your backend.  It's the same as the "No _links section found at..." error described in the next section. Please follow the troubleshooting details in that section.

"No _links section found at..." error from User Interface

When starting up the User Interface for the first time, you may see an error that looks similar to this...

No _links section found at [rest-api-url]
ERROR Error: undefined doesn't contain the link sites
     at MapSubscriber.project

This error means that the UI is unable to contact the REST API listed at [rest-api-url] and/or the response from that [rest-api-url] is unexpected (as it doesn't contain the "_links" to the endpoints available at that REST API).  A valid DSpace [rest-api-url] will respond with JSON similar to our demo API at https://api7.dspace.org/server/api

First, test the connection to your REST API from the UI from the command-line.

  1. In DSpace 7.1, this could be tested by running yarn config:check:rest  This script will attempt a basic Node.js connection to the REST API that is configured in your "environment.prod.ts" file and validate the response.
  2. In DSpace 7.2 (and above), this is instead tested by running yarn test:rest This script will attempt a basic Node.js connection to the REST API that is configured in your "[dspace-angular]/config/config.prod.yml" file and validate the response.  (NOTE: you will need to copy your config.prod.yml to [dspace-angular]/config/ for this script to find it!)
  3. A successful connection should return a 200 Response and all JSON validation checks should return "true".
  4. If you receive a connection error or different response code, you MUST fix your REST API before the UI will be able to work (see additional hints below for likely causes). 

Oftentimes, this issue is caused by one of the following scenarios:

  • A possible configuration issue in the frontend or backend.
    • Check the "rest" section of your config.*.yml (or environment.*.ts for 7.1 or 7.0) configuration file for the User Interface.  That configuration section defines which REST API the UI will attempt to use.  If the settings do NOT map to a valid DSpace REST API, then you will see this "No _links section found.." error.
    • Check the "dspace.ui.url" configuration of your backend & verify it corresponds to the public URL of the User Interface (i.e. the exact same URL you use in your browser)
  • A possible SSL certificate issue. This issue may also appear if the REST API's SSL Certificate is either untrusted (by the frontend) or expired
    • If you are using a Let's Encrypt style certificate, you may need to modify your backend's Apache settings to also provide a Chain File as follows:

      # For example: /etc/letsencrypt/live/[domain]/cert.pem
      SSLCertificateFile [full-path-to-PEM-cert]
      # For example: /etc/letsencrypt/live/[domain]/privkey.pem
      SSLCertificateKeyFile [full-path-to-cert-KEY]
      # For example: /etc/letsencrypt/live/[domain]/chain.pem
      SSLCertificateChainFile [full-path-to-chain-file]
    • Per the Apache docs, you can also use the SSLCertificateFile setting to specify intermediate CA certificates along with the main cert.
    • For self-signed certs, see also "Using a Self-Signed SSL Certificate causes the Frontend to not be able to access the Backend" common issue listed below.
  • Something blocking access to the REST API. This may be a proxy issue, a firewall issue, or something else generally blocking the port (e.g. port 443 for SSL).
    • Verify that you can access the REST API from the machine where Node.js is running (i.e. your UI is running).  For example try a simple "wget" or "curl" to verify the REST API is returning expected JSON similar to our demo API at https://api7.dspace.org/server/api

      # Attempt to access the REST API via HTTPS from command-line on the machine where Node.js is running.
      # If this fails or throws a SSL cert error, you must fix it.
      wget https://[rest.host]/server/api
    • In most production scenarios, your REST API should be publicly accessible on the web, unless you are guaranteed that all your DSpace users will access the site behind a VPN or similar.  So, this "No _links section found" error may also occur if you are accessing the UI from a client computer/web browser which is unable to access the REST API.


If none of the above suggestions helped, you may want to look closer at the request logs in your browser (using browser's Dev Tools) and server-side logs, to be sure that the requests from your UI are going where you expect, and see if they appear also on the backend.  Tips for finding these logs can be found in the "DSpace 7.x" section of our Troubleshoot an error guide.

"RangeError: Maximum call stack size exceeded"

When starting up the User Interface for the first time, you may see an error that looks similar to this...

ERROR RangeError: Maximum call stack size exceeded

This error means that the UI is trying to contact your REST API, but is having issues doing so (possibly because either a proxy or an HTTP→HTTPS redirect is causing issues or a redirect loop).

Double check your "dspace.server.url" setting in your local.cfg on the backend.  Is it the same URL you use in your browser to access the backend? Keep in mind the mode (http vs https), domain, port, and subpath(s) all must match, and it must not end in a trailing slash.

Also double check the "rest" section of your config.*.yml (or environment.*.ts for 7.1 or 7.0) configuration file for the User Interface. Make sure it's also pointing to the exact same URL as that "dspace.server.url" setting. Again, check the mode, domain, port and paths all match exactly. 

"XMLHttpRequest.. has been blocked by CORS policy" or "CORS error" or "Invalid CORS request"

If you are seeing a CORS error in your browser, this means that you are accessing the REST API via an "untrusted" client application.  To fix this error, you must change your REST API / Backend configuration to trust the application.

  • By default, the DSpace REST API / Backend will only trust the application at dspace.ui.url.  Therefore, you should first verify that your dspace.ui.url setting (in your local.cfg) exactly matches the primary URL of your User Interface (i.e. the URL you see in the browser).  This must be an exact match: mode (http vs https), domain, port, and subpath(s) all must match.
  • If you need to trust additional client applications / URLs, those MUST be added to the rest.cors.allowed-origins configuration. See REST API for details on this configuration.
  • Also, check your Tomcat (or servlet container) log files. If Tomcat throws a syntax or other major error, it may return an error response that triggers a CORS error.  In this scenario, the CORS error is only a side effect of a larger error.

If you modify either of the above settings, you will need to restart Tomcat for the changes to take effect.

Cannot login from the User Interface with a password that I know is valid

If you cannot login via the user interface with a valid password, you should check to see what underlying error is being returned by the REST API.  The easiest way to do this is by using your web browser's Dev Tools as described in our Troubleshoot an error guide (see the "Try this first" section for DSpace 7).

If the password is valid, more than likely you'll see the underlying error is "403 Forbidden" error with a message that says "Access is denied. Invalid CSRF Token" (see hints on solving this in the very next section)

"403 Forbidden" error with a message that says "Access is denied. Invalid CSRF Token"

First, double check that you are seeing that exact error message.  A 403 Forbidden error may be thrown in a variety of scenarios. For example, a 403 may be thrown if a page requires a login, if you have entered an invalid username or password, or even sometimes when there is a CORS error (see previous installation issue for how to solve that). 

If you are seeing the message "Invalid CSRF Token" message (especially on every login), this is usually the result of a configuration / setup issue.

Here's some things you should double check:

  1. If you site had been working, and this error seems random, it is possibly that DSPACE-XSRF-COOKIE cookie in your browser just got "out of sync" (this can occur if you are logging into the REST API and UI separately in the same browser).
    1. Logout and login & try the same action again.  If it works this time, then that cookie was just "out of sync".  If it fails a second time, then there is a likely configuration issue...see suggestions below.
  2. Make sure your backend is running HTTPS!  This is the most common cause of this error.  The only scenario where you can run the backend in HTTP is when both the frontend & backend URLs are "localhost"-based URLs. 
    1. The reason for this HTTPS requirement is that most modern browsers will automatically block cross-domain cookies when using HTTP. Cross-domain cookies are required for successful authentication.  The only exception is when both the frontend and backend are using localhost URLs (as in that scenario the cookies no longer need to be sent cross-domain).  A more technical description of this behavior is in the sub-bullets below.
      1. If the REST API Backend is running HTTP, then it will always send the required DSPACE-XSRF-COOKIE cookie with a value of SameSite=Lax.  This setting means that the cookie will not be sent (by your browser) to any other domains. Effectively, this will block all logins from any domain that is not the same as the REST API (as this cookie will not be sent back to the REST API as required for CSRF validation).  In other words, running the REST API on HTTP is only possible if the User Interface is running on the exact same domain. For example, running both on 'localhost' with HTTP is a common development setup, and this will work fine.
      2. In order to allow for cross-domain logins, you MUST enable HTTPS on the REST API. This will result in the DSPACE-XSRF-COOKIE cookie being set to SameSite=None; Secure.  This setting means the cookie will be sent cross domain, but only for HTTPS requests. It also allows the user interface (or other client applications) to be on any domain, provided that the domain is trusted by CORS (see rest.cors.allowed-origins setting in REST API)
  3. Verify that your User Interface's "rest" section matches the value of "dspace.server.url" configuration on the Backend.  This simply ensures your UI is sending requests to the correct REST API.  Also pay close attention that both specify HTTPS when necessary (see previous bullet).
  4. Verify that your "dspace.server.url" configuration on the Backend matches the primary URL of the REST API (i.e. the URL you see in the browser).  This must be an exact match: mode (http vs https), domain, port, and subpath(s) all must match, and it must not end in a trailing slash (e.g. "https://api7.dspace.org/server" is valid, but  "https://api7.dspace.org/server/" may cause problems).
  5. Verify that your "dspace.ui.url" configuration on the Backend matches the primary URL of your User Interface (i.e. the URL you see in the browser). This must be an exact match: mode (http vs https), domain, port, and subpath(s) all must match, and it must not end in a trailing slash (e.g. "https://demo7.dspace.org" is valid, but "https://demo7.dspace.org/" may cause problems).
  6. Verify that nothing (e.g. a proxy) is blocking Cookies and HTTP Headers from being passed between the UI and REST API.  DSpace's CSRF protection relies on the client (User Interface) being able to return both a valid DSPACE-XSRF-COOKIE cookie and a matching X-XSRF-TOKEN header back to the REST API for validation. See our REST Contract for more details https://github.com/DSpace/RestContract/blob/main/csrf-tokens.md
  7. If you are running a custom application, or accessing the REST API from the command-line (or other third party tool like Postman), you MUST ensure you are sending the CSRF token on every modifying request.  See our REST Contract for more details https://github.com/DSpace/RestContract/blob/main/csrf-tokens.md

For additional information on how DSpace's CSRF Protection works, see our REST Contract at https://github.com/DSpace/RestContract/blob/main/csrf-tokens.md

Using a Self-Signed SSL Certificate causes the Frontend to not be able to access the Backend

If you setup the backend to use HTTPS with a self-signed SSL certificate, then Node.js (which the frontend runs on) may not "trust" that certificate by default.  This will result in the Frontend not being able to make requests to the Backend.

One possible workaround (untested as of yet) is to try setting the NODE_EXTRA_CA_CERTS environment variable (which tells Node.js to trust additional CA certificates).

Another option is to avoid using a self-signed SSL certificate. Instead, create a real, issued SSL certificate using something like Let's Encrypt (or similar free services)

My REST API is running under HTTPS, but some of its "link" URLs are switching to HTTP?

This scenario may occur when you are running the REST API behind an HTTP proxy (e.g. Apache HTTPD's mod_proxy_http, Ngnix's proxy_pass or any other proxy that is forwarding from HTTPS to HTTP).

The fix is to ensure the DSpace REST API is sent the X-Forwarded-Proto header (by your proxying service), telling it that the forwarded protocol is HTTPS

X-Forwarded-Proto: https

In general, when running behind a proxy, the DSpace REST API depends on accurate X-Forwarded-* headers to be sent by that proxy.

Solr responds with "Expected mime type application/octet-stream but got text/html" (404 Not Found)

This error occurs when Solr is either not initialized properly, or your DSpace backend is unable to find/communicate with Solr.  Here's a few things you should double check:

  1. Verify that Solr is running and/or check for errors in its logs.  Try to restart it (usually via a command like [solr]/bin/solr restart), and verify it's accessible via wget or a web browser (usually at a URL like http://localhost:8983/solr)
  2. Verify that your solr.server setting (in local.cfg) is correct for your Solr installation.  This should correspond to the main URL of your Solr site (usually something like http://localhost:8983/solr).  If you use wget  or a browser from the machine running your DSpace backend, you should get a response from that URL (it should return the Solr Admin UI).
  3. Verify that the required DSpace Solr cores have been properly installed/configured (per installation instructions above).  When properly installed, you should be able to get a response from them. For example, the URL ${solr.server}/search/select should run an empty query against the "search" core, returning an empty JSON result.
  4. If Solr is running & you are sure solr.server is set properly, double check that nothing else could be blocking the DSpace backend from accessing Solr.  For instance, if Solr is on a separate machine, verify that there is no firewall or proxy that could be blocking access between the DSpace backend machine and the Solr machine.

Database errors occur when you run ant fresh_install

There are two common errors that occur.

  • If your error looks like this:

    [java] 2004-03-25 15:17:07,730 INFO
    	    org.dspace.storage.rdbms.InitializeDatabase @ Initializing Database
    [java] 2004-03-25 15:17:08,816 FATAL
    	    org.dspace.storage.rdbms.InitializeDatabase @ Caught exception:
    [java] org.postgresql.util.PSQLException: Connection refused. Check
    	    that the hostname and port are correct and that the postmaster is
    	    accepting TCP/IP connections.
    [java]     at
    	    org.postgresql.jdbc1.AbstractJdbc1Connection.openConnection(AbstractJd
    bc1Connection.java:204)
    [java]     at org.postgresql.Driver.connect(Driver.java:139)

    it usually means you haven't yet added the relevant configuration parameter to your PostgreSQL configuration (see above), or perhaps you haven't restarted PostgreSQL after making the change. Also, make sure that the db.username and db.password properties are correctly set in [dspace]/config/dspace.cfg. An easy way to check that your DB is working OK over TCP/IP is to try this on the command line:

    psql -U dspace -W -h localhost

    Enter the dspace database password, and you should be dropped into the psql tool with a dspace=> prompt.

  • Another common error looks like this:

    [java] 2004-03-25 16:37:16,757 INFO
    	    org.dspace.storage.rdbms.InitializeDatabase @ Initializing Database
    [java] 2004-03-25 16:37:17,139 WARN
    	    org.dspace.storage.rdbms.DatabaseManager @ Exception initializing DB
    	    pool
    [java] java.lang.ClassNotFoundException: org.postgresql.Driver
    [java]     at java.net.URLClassLoader$1.run(URLClassLoader.java:198)
    [java]     at java.security.AccessController.doPrivileged(Native
    	   Method)
    [java]     at
    	   java.net.URLClassLoader.findClass(URLClassLoader.java:186)

    This means that the PostgreSQL JDBC driver is not present in [dspace]/lib. See above.

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3 Comments

  1. I was trying to install the Backend (Server API) locally. Everything went smooth except that none of the database tables were created. This lead to the server application not being properly deployed by tomcat. Running: "./bin/dspace database migrate" after step 9 fixed it.

  2. I have difficulty setting up the backend server to communicate properly to Apache using mod_proxy_ajp. Adding secretRequired="false" in the AJP Connector in server.xml fixed it, e.g.:

    <Connector protocol="AJP/1.3" port="8009" redirectPort="8443" URIEncoding="UTF-8" secretRequired="false"/>
  3. When using solr 9.0.0, the location of the contributed libraries has changed.  The search core fails to load without these libraries. To correct this, edit search/conf/solrconfig.xml and remove or comment out the following configuration:


        <!-- Include contributed libraries that we use in DSpace. -->
    <!--<lib dir='${solr.install.dir}/contrib/analysis-extras/lib/'
             regex='icu4j-.*\.jar'/>
        <lib dir='${solr.install.dir}/contrib/analysis-extras/lucene-libs/'
             regex='lucene-analyzers-icu-.*\.jar'/>
        <lib dir="${solr.install.dir}/contrib/extraction/lib" />
        <lib dir="${solr.install.dir}/dist/"
             regex="solr-cell-\d.*\.jar" />→


    and replace it with:


        <!-- the contributed libraries have a different location in solr 9.0 -->
        <lib dir='${solr.install.dir}/modules/analysis-extras/lib/'
             regex='icu4j-.*\.jar'/>
        <lib dir='${solr.install.dir}/modules/analysis-extras/lib/'
             regex='lucene-analysis-icu-.*\.jar'/>
        <lib dir='${solr.install.dir}/modules/extraction/lib' />


    then finally, restart solr.