How to Install DokuWiki on Ubuntu 18.04

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In this tutorial, we will show you how to install DokuWiki on an Ubuntu 18.04 Cloud VPS with Apache and PHP.

DokuWiki is a free and open source lightweight wiki software platform. What makes it different from other similar wiki applications is that DokuWiki works without the need for a database. Instead, it stores its data in PHP data-files, which makes it pretty fast and simpler to set up. The installation is pretty easy and it should take no longer than 10 minutes, so let’s get started.

DokuWiki has a lot of handy features that will ease our usage and enhance our user experience:

  • Simple syntax which makes the datafiles as readable as possible
  • You can easily embed raw HTML or PHP code
  • Unlimited page revisions that can be compared with the diff tool
  • Uploading and embedding of images and other media
  • Easily configurable through different config options including the Configuration Manager
  • Easy navigation through breadcrumbs
  • Content can be categorized in namespaces that can be easily browsable through an automatic index
  • Automatic save to avoid content lost during editing
  • Simple support for read only pages
  • Spam blacklist
  • Delayed Indexing
    and many more useful features…


  • Ubuntu 18.04 Server – for the purposes of this tutorial we will use our LC VPS-2 plan.
  • System user with root privileges – all our VPS hosting plans come with full root access
  • It supports almost all of the major web servers such as Apache, IIS, nginx and LiteSpeed web server
  • PHP version 5.6 or newer – In this tutorial we will use PHP version 7.2

Step 1. Log in and Update the Server Packages

Login to your Ubuntu 18.04 server via SSH as user root

ssh [email protected]_Address -p Port_number

where IP_Address and Port_number are your server’s actual IP address and SSH port number.

and run the following commands to ensure that all installed packages are updated to the latest available version.

apt update && apt upgrade

Step 2. Install Apache web server

As we already mentioned, DokuWiki can run on almost all of the popular web servers that support PHP, but in this tutorial we will install and use the Apache web server instead. It is available in the official Ubuntu repository and it can be easily installed using the following command:

apt install apache2 -y

Once the web server is installed, start it and enable it to automatically start upon a reboot

systemctl start apache2
systemctl enable apache2

To check if Apache is up and running use the following command

systemctl status apache2


apache2.service - The Apache HTTP Server
   Loaded: loaded (/lib/systemd/system/apache2.service; enabled; vendor preset: enabled)
  Drop-In: /lib/systemd/system/apache2.service.d
   Active: active (running)
 Main PID: 13784 (apache2)
    Tasks: 55 (limit: 2321)
   CGroup: /system.slice/apache2.service
           ââ13784 /usr/sbin/apache2 -k start

Enable Apache’s rewrite module:

a2enmod rewrite


Enabling module rewrite.
To activate the new configuration, you need to run:
  systemctl restart apache2

As suggested, restart Apache to activate the new configuration

systemctl restart apache2

Step 3. Install PHP

DokuWiki is PHP based application, so the next step will be to install PHP on the server. We will install PHP version 7.2 and several PHP modules required by DokuWiki.

apt install php7.2 php7.2-cli libapache2-mod-php7.2 php7.2-gd  php7.2-curl php7.2-json php7.2-xml

Verify that PHP is properly installed

php -v


PHP 7.2.15-0ubuntu0.18.04.1 (cli) (built: Feb  8 2019 14:54:22) ( NTS )
Copyright (c) 1997-2018 The PHP Group
Zend Engine v3.2.0, Copyright (c) 1998-2018 Zend Technologies
    with Zend OPcache v7.2.15-0ubuntu0.18.04.1, Copyright (c) 1999-2018, by Zend Technologies

Step 4. Download DokuWiki

Go to DokuWiki’s download page and download the latest stable release of the wiki to your server. You may need to use a different download link, as it may stop working as DokuWiki updates their software.


Unpack the downloaded tarball to the document root directory for your web server. Usually, it is the ‘/var/www/html‘ directory.

tar xvf dokuwiki-8a269cc015a64b40e4c918699f1e1142.tgz -C /var/www/html/

All of DokuWiki’s files will be stored in a new ‘dokuwiki’ directory inside the document root. This directory needs to be accessible by the web server user, so we have to set the proper ownership

chown -R www-data:www-data /var/www/html/dokuwiki/

The DokuWiki installation has its own distribution copy of the .htaccess file named .htaccess.dist. Rename this file

cd /var/www/html/dokuwiki && mv .htaccess.dist .htaccess

and run the following command to uncomment the ‘RewriteEngine on’ line in the .htaccess file

sed -i s/"# RewriteEngine on"/"RewriteEngine on"/g .htaccess

Step 5. Create an Apache Virtual Host

Next, we will create Apache virtual host, so you can access DokuWiki with a domain name or subdomain instead of an IP address. For example, we will use ‘‘. Please make sure to replace that domain name with your actual registered domain name.

Create a virtual host directive with the following content:

nano /etc/apache2/sites-available/dokuwiki.conf
VirtualHost *:80
    ServerAdmin [email protected]
    DocumentRoot /var/www/html/dokuwiki/
Directory /var/www/html/dokuwiki/
    Options FollowSymLinks
    AllowOverride All
    Order allow,deny
    allow from all
    ErrorLog /var/log/apache2/
    CustomLog /var/log/apache2/ common

Activate the virtual host by creating a symbolic link to Apache’s ‘sites-enabled’ directory

ln -s /etc/apache2/sites-available/dokuwiki.conf /etc/apache2/sites-enabled/

Check the Apache configuration files for errors:

apachectl configtest
Syntax OK

If the syntax is OK, restart the web server for the changes to take effect.

systemctl restart apache2

Step 6. Complete the Installation

Now, that we have everything installed and configured on our Ubuntu 18.04 server, we can proceed with DokuWiki’s web installation. To do that, open a web browser and navigate to . This installation script will help you with the initial DokuWiki configuration and it will check if all server requirements are met.


That’s it! You now have a functioning DokuWiki set up to use for whatever you need. For more information on how to configure and use DokuWiki you can check their official documentation.

Of course, you don’t have to install DokuWiki on Ubuntu 18.04 if you use one of our Ubuntu Cloud VPS Hosting services, in which case you can simply ask our expert Linux admins to setup this for you. They are available 24×7 and will take care of your request immediately.

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  Comments: 2

  1. Correct VirtualHost code:

    ServerAdmin [email protected]
    DocumentRoot /var/www/html/dokuwiki/

    Options FollowSymLinks
    AllowOverride All
    Order allow,deny
    allow from all

    ErrorLog /var/log/apache2/
    CustomLog /var/log/apache2/ common

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