GeoNode Project


The following steps will guide you to a new setup of GeoNode Project. All guides will first install and configure the system to run it in DEBUG mode (also known as DEVELOPMENT mode) and then by configuring an HTTPD server to serve GeoNode through the standard HTTP (80) port.

Those guides are not meant to be used on a production system. There will be dedicated chapters that will show you some hints to optimize GeoNode for a production-ready machine. In any case, we strongly suggest to task an experienced DevOp or System Administrator before exposing your server to the WEB.

Ubuntu 18.04

This part of the documentation describes the complete setup process for GeoNode on an Ubuntu 18.04 64-bit clean environment (Desktop or Server). All examples use shell commands that you must enter on a local terminal or a remote shell. - If you have a graphical desktop environment you can open the terminal application after login; - if you are working on a remote server the provider or sysadmin should has given you access through an ssh client.

Install the dependencies

In this section, we are going to install all the basic packages and tools needed for a complete GeoNode installation. To follow this guide, a piece of basic knowledge about Ubuntu Server configuration and working with a shell is required. This guide uses vim as the editor; fill free to use nano, gedit or others.

Upgrade system packages

Check that your system is already up-to-date with the repository running the following commands:

sudo apt update
sudo apt upgrade

Create a Dedicated User

In the following steps a User named geonode is used: to run installation commands the user must be in the sudo group.

Create User geonode if not present:

# Follow the prompts to set the new user's information.
# It is fine to accept the defaults to leave all of this information blank.
sudo adduser geonode

# The following command adds the user geonode to group sudo
sudo usermod -aG sudo geonode

# make sure the newly created user is allowed to login by ssh
# (out of the scope of this documentation) and switch to User geonode
su geonode

Packages Installation


You don’t need to install the system packages if you want to run the project using Docker

First, we are going to install all the system packages needed for the GeoNode setup.

# Install packages from GeoNode core
sudo apt install -y python-gdal gdal-bin
sudo apt install -y python-pip python-dev python-virtualenv
sudo apt install -y libxml2 libxml2-dev gettext
sudo apt install -y libxslt1-dev libjpeg-dev libpng-dev libpq-dev libgdal-dev libgdal20
sudo apt install -y software-properties-common build-essential
sudo apt install -y git unzip gcc zlib1g-dev libgeos-dev libproj-dev
sudo apt install -y sqlite3 spatialite-bin libsqlite3-mod-spatialite

# Install Openjdk
sudo -i apt update
sudo apt install openjdk-8-jdk-headless default-jdk-headless -y
sudo update-java-alternatives --jre-headless --jre --set java-1.8.0-openjdk-amd64

sudo apt update -y
sudo apt upgrade -y
sudo apt autoremove -y
sudo apt autoclean -y
sudo apt purge -y
sudo apt clean -y

# Install Packages for Virtual environment management
sudo apt install -y virtualenv virtualenvwrapper

# Install text editor
sudo apt install -y vim

Geonode Project Installation

Geonode project is the proper way to run a customized installation of Geonode. The repository of geonode-project contains a minimal set of files following the structure of a django-project. Geonode itself will be installed as a requirement of your project. Inside the project structure is possible to extend, replace or modify all geonode componentse (e.g. css and other static files, templates, models..) and even register new django apps without touching the original Geonode code.


You can call your geonode project whatever you like following the naming conventions for python packages (generally lower case with underscores (_). In the examples below, replace my_geonode with whatever you would like to name your project.

See also the README file on geonode-project repository

First of all we need to prepare a new Python Virtual Environment

Prepare the environment

sudo mkdir -p /opt/geonode_custom/
sudo usermod -a -G www-data geonode
sudo chown -Rf geonode:www-data /opt/geonode_custom/
sudo chmod -Rf 775 /opt/geonode_custom/

Clone the source code

cd /opt/geonode_custom/
git clone

Make an instance out of the Django Template


We will call our instance my_geonode. You can change the name at your convenience.

vim ~/.bashrc
# add the following line to the bottom
source /usr/share/virtualenvwrapper/
source /usr/share/virtualenvwrapper/
mkvirtualenv my_geonode
pip install Django==1.11.25

django-admin startproject --template=./geonode-project -e py,sh,md,rst,json,yml,ini,env,sample -n monitoring-cron -n Dockerfile my_geonode

# Install the Python packages
cd /opt/geonode_custom/my_geonode
pip install -r requirements.txt --upgrade --no-cache --no-cache-dir
pip install -e . --upgrade

# Install GDAL Utilities for Python
pip install pygdal=="`gdal-config --version`.*"

Run GeoNode Project for the first time in DEBUG Mode


Be sure you have successfully completed all the steps of the section Install the dependencies.

This command will run both GeoNode and GeoServer locally after having prepared the SQLite database. The server will start in DEBUG (or DEVELOPMENT) mode, and it will start the following services:

  1. GeoNode on http://localhost:8000/
  2. GeoServer on http://localhost:8080/geoserver/

This modality is beneficial to debug issues and/or develop new features, but it cannot be used on a production system.

# Prepare the GeoNode SQLite database (the first time only)
paver setup
paver sync


In case you want to start again from a clean situation, just run

paver reset_hard


This will blow up completely your local_settings, delete the SQLlite database and remove the GeoServer data dir.

# Run the server in DEBUG mode
paver start

Once the server has finished the initialization and prints on the console the sentence GeoNode is now available., you can open a browser and go to:


with:

user: admin
password: admin

From now on, everything already said for GeoNode Core (please refer to the section Postgis database Setup and following), applies to a GeoNode Project.

Be careful to use the new paths and names everywhere:

  • Everytime you’ll find the keyword geonode, you’ll need to use your geonode custom name instead (in this example my_geonode).
  • Everytime you’ll find paths pointing to /opt/geonode/, you’ll need to update them to point to your custom project instead (in this example /opt/geonode_custom/my_geonode).



Before moving with this section, you should have read and clearly understood the INSTALLATION > GeoNode Core sections, and in particular the Docker one. Everything said for the GeoNode Core Vanilla applies here too, except that the Docker container names will be slightly different. As an instance if you named your project my_geonode, your containers will be called:

'django4my_geonode' instead of 'django4geonode' and so on...

Deploy an instance of a geonode-project Django template 2.10.3 with Docker on localhost

Prepare the environment

sudo mkdir -p /opt/geonode_custom/
sudo usermod -a -G www-data geonode
sudo chown -Rf geonode:www-data /opt/geonode_custom/
sudo chmod -Rf 775 /opt/geonode_custom/

Clone the source code

cd /opt/geonode_custom/
git clone

Make an instance out of the Django Template


We will call our instance my_geonode. You can change the name at your convenience.

source /usr/share/virtualenvwrapper/
mkvirtualenv my_geonode
pip install Django==1.11.25

django-admin startproject --template=./geonode-project -e py,sh,md,rst,json,yml,ini,env,sample -n monitoring-cron -n Dockerfile my_geonode
cd /opt/geonode_custom/my_geonode

Modify the code and the templates and rebuild the Docker Containers

docker-compose -f docker-compose.yml build --no-cache

Finally, run the containers

docker-compose -f docker-compose.yml up -d

Deploy an instance of a geonode-project Django template 2.10.2 with Docker on a domain


We will use as an example. You can change the name at your convenience.

Stop the containers

cd /opt/geonode_custom/my_geonode

docker-compose -f docker-compose.yml stop

Edit the ENV override file in order to deploy on

Replace everywhere localhost with

vim .env
# e.g.: :%s/localhost/


It is possible to override here even more variables to customize the GeoNode instance. See the GeoNode Settings section in order to get a list of the available options.

Run the containers in daemon mode

docker-compose -f docker-compose.yml -f docker-compose.override.example-org.yml up --build -d


Ansible is an open-source software provisioning, configuration management, and application-deployment tool for IT infrastructure. It is written in Python and allows users to manage nodes (computers) over SSH. Configuration files are written in YAML, a simple, human-readable, data serialization format.

Ansible can be used for automating the manual installation process of GeoNode. In case you’re new to GeoNode we suggest first to get an Overview of GeoNode Core components.

Installing Ansible

Before you install Ansible make sure you have Python 2 (version 2.7) or Python 3 (versions 3.5 and higher) on the controlling machine, you will also need an SSH client. Most Linux distributions come with an SSH client preinstalled.


For further installation instruction, please visit the official installation documentation.

Test your Setup

After you’ve installed Ansible, you can test your setup by use of the following command

ansible localhost -m ping

You should get the following output:

    localhost | success >> {
    "changed": false,
    "ping": "pong"

Ansible Hosts file

Ansible keeps information about the managed nodes in the inventory or hosts file. Edit or create the hosts file with your favorite editor:

vim /etc/ansible/hosts

This file should contain a list of nodes for Ansible to manage. Nodes can be referred to either with IP or hostname. The syntax is the following:

For targeting several servers you can group them like:




Public Key access

To avoid having to type your user’s password to connect to the nodes over and over, using SSH keys is recommended. To setup Public Key SSH access to the nodes. First, create a key pair:


And follow the instructions on the screen. A new key pair will be generated and placed inside the .ssh folder in your user’s home directory.

All you need to do now is copy the public key ( into the authorized_keys file on the node you want to manage, inside the user’s home directory. For example, if you want to be able to connect to as user geo edit the /home/geo/.ssh/authorized_keys file on the remote machine and add the content of your public key inside the file.

For more information on how to set up SSH keys in Ubuntu refer to this document.

Connect to managed nodes

Now that SSH access to the managed nodes is in place for all the nodes inside the Ansible inventory (hosts file), we can run our first command:

ansible geonode -m ping -u geo


change geo with the username to use for SSH login

The output will be similar to this:

ansible all -m ping -u geo | success >> {
    "changed": false,
    "ping": "pong"

We asked Ansible to connect to the machine in our Inventory grouped under [geonode] as user `geo and run the module ping (modules are Ansible’s units of work). As you can see by the output, Ansible successfully connected to the remote machine and executed the module ping.

Ad hoc commands and playbooks

Ansible integrates two basic concepts of running commands: An ad-hoc command is something that you might type in to do something immediately, but don’t want to save for later. One example of an ad-hoc command is the ping command we just ran. We typed in the command line and ran it interactively.

For more information on ad-hoc command refer to the adhoc documentation section.

Playbooks are Ansible’s configuration, deployment and orchestration language. In contrast to ad hoc commands, Playbooks can declare configurations, but they can also orchestrate steps of any manual ordered process.

For more information on playbooks refer to the playbook documentation section.

In the following, we will provide you an example on how to setup a playbook for installing GeoNode on a server.

Installing GeoNode project by use of a playbook

First, we have to install the underlying steps for installing geonode provided by the official GeoNode role:

$ ansible-galaxy install geonode.geonode


Roles are ways of automatically loading certain vars_files, tasks, and handlers based on a known file structure. Grouping content by roles also allows easy sharing of roles with other users.


To find out how these install tasks are defined, we suggest having a look a the different tasks of role geonode.

Setup a playbook

After installation of the role geonode.geonode we will now create a simple playbook which defines what should happen. Create the playbook file where it suits best for you. For example in your home folder:

mkdir ~/geonode_ansible
vim ~/geonode_ansible/install_geonode.yml

with following content

- name: Provision a GeoNode into Production
  hosts: geonode
  remote_user: geo
    app_name: my_geonode
    deploy_user: ubuntu
    branch_name: master
    virtualenv_dir: /home/geo/.venvs
    pg_max_connections: 100
    pg_shared_buffers: 128MB
    tomcat_xms: 1024M
    tomcat_xmx: 2048M
    nginx_client_max_body_size: 400M
  gather_facts: False
    - name: Install python for Ansible
      become: yes
      become_user: root
      raw: test -e /usr/bin/python || (apt -y update && apt install -y python-minimal)
     - { role: GeoNode.geonode }

The playbook is composed of different parts. The most important are:

The hosts part specifies to which hosts in the Inventory this playbook applies and how to connect to them. This points to your hosts file with grouped servers under [geonode] as explained before. (Most likely you will only have one node under group geonode)

The vars section mainly describe configured settings. Please visit the geonode ansible readme regarding role variables.

Roles points to our installed geonode role which has all needed installation tasks.

Run the Playbook

Now that we have created our Playbook, we can execute it with:

ansible-playbook ~/geonode_ansible/install_geonode.yml -u geo

PLAY [] *************************************************************

GATHERING FACTS ***************************************************************
ok: []


Ansible should connect to the host specified in the hosts section grouped by [geonode] and run the install tasks one by one. If something goes wrong Ansible will fail fast and stop the installation process. When successfully finished you should be able to see GeoNode’s welcome screen at your site_url.

This concludes our brief tutorial on Ansible. For a more thorough introduction refer to the official documentation.

Also, take a look at the Ansible examples repository or a set of Playbooks showing common techniques.