NGINX Unit

Installation§

Prerequisites§

NGINX Unit is verified to compile and run on various Unix-like operating systems, including:

  • FreeBSD 10 or later
  • Linux 2.6 or later
  • macOS 10.6 or later
  • Solaris 11

Most modern instruction set architectures are supported, such as:

  • ARM
  • IA-32
  • PowerPC
  • MIPS
  • S390X
  • x86-64

App languages and platforms that Unit can run (including multiple versions of the same language):

  • Go 1.6 or later
  • Java 8 or later
  • Node.js 8.11 or later
  • PHP 5, 7
  • Perl 5.12 or later
  • Python 2.6, 2.7, 3
  • Ruby 2.0 or later

Note

To build Unit from source, you also need build tools and language development packages.

Docker Images§

To install and run Unit from our Docker image repository:

# docker pull nginx/unit
# docker run -d nginx/unit

By default, the :latest image tag is used that resolves into a -full configuration of the latest Unit version. Other tags available:

TagDescription
<version>-fullModules for all supported languages.
<version>-minimalNo language modules.
<version>-<language>Specific language module only, for example 1.3-ruby2.3 or 1.2-python2.7.

Note

Control socket is located here: /var/run/control.unit.sock.

For further details, see the repository page and our Howto.

Precompiled Packages§

Installing a precompiled Unit binary package is best for most occasions; binaries are available for:

  • Amazon Linux, Amazon Linux 2
  • CentOS 6, 7
  • Debian 8, 9
  • Fedora 28, 29
  • RHEL 6, 7
  • Ubuntu 16.04, 18.04, 18.10

Amazon Linux§

  1. To configure Unit repository, create the following file named /etc/yum.repos.d/unit.repo:

    Amazon Linux:

    [unit]
    name=unit repo
    baseurl=https://packages.nginx.org/unit/amzn/$releasever/$basearch/
    gpgcheck=0
    enabled=1
    

    Amazon Linux 2 LTS:

    [unit]
    name=unit repo
    baseurl=https://packages.nginx.org/unit/amzn2/$releasever/$basearch/
    gpgcheck=0
    enabled=1
    
  2. Install Unit base package and additional packages you would like to use.

    Amazon Linux:

    # yum install unit
    # yum install unit-devel unit-go unit-jsc8 unit-php \
          unit-perl unit-python27 unit-python34 unit-python35 unit-python36
    

    Amazon Linux 2 LTS:

    # yum install unit
    # yum install unit-devel unit-go unit-jsc8 unit-php \
          unit-perl unit-python
    

Note

Control socket is located here: /var/run/unit/control.sock.

CentOS§

  1. To configure Unit repository, create the following file named /etc/yum.repos.d/unit.repo:

    [unit]
    name=unit repo
    baseurl=https://packages.nginx.org/unit/centos/$releasever/$basearch/
    gpgcheck=0
    enabled=1
    
  2. Install Unit base package and additional packages you would like to use.

    # yum install unit
    # yum install unit-devel unit-go unit-jsc8 unit-php \
          unit-perl unit-python
    

Note

Control socket is located here: /var/run/unit/control.sock.

Debian§

  1. Download the NGINX signing key used for our repositories and packages and add it to apt’s keyring:

    # curl -O https://nginx.org/keys/nginx_signing.key
    # apt-key add nginx_signing.key
    

    This eliminates the ‘packages cannot be authenticated’ warnings during installation.

  2. To configure Unit repository, create the following file named /etc/apt/sources.list.d/unit.list:

    Debian 8:

    deb https://packages.nginx.org/unit/debian/ jessie unit
    deb-src https://packages.nginx.org/unit/debian/ jessie unit
    

    Debian 9:

    deb https://packages.nginx.org/unit/debian/ stretch unit
    deb-src https://packages.nginx.org/unit/debian/ stretch unit
    
  3. Install Unit base package and additional packages you would like to use.

    Debian 8:

    # apt update
    # apt install unit
    # apt install unit-dev unit-php unit-perl unit-python2.7 unit-python3.4 unit-ruby
    

    Debian 9:

    # apt update
    # apt install unit
    # apt install unit-dev unit-go1.7 unit-go1.8 unit-jsc8 unit-php unit-perl \
          unit-python2.7 unit-python3.5 unit-ruby
    

Note

Control socket is located here: /var/run/control.unit.sock.

Fedora§

  1. To configure Unit repository, create the following file named /etc/yum.repos.d/unit.repo:

    [unit]
    name=unit repo
    baseurl=https://packages.nginx.org/unit/fedora/$releasever/$basearch/
    gpgcheck=0
    enabled=1
    
  2. Install Unit base package and additional packages you would like to use.

    Fedora 28:

    # yum install unit
    # yum install unit-devel unit-go unit-jsc8 unit-php \
          unit-perl unit-python27 unit-python36 unit-ruby
    

    Fedora 29:

    # yum install unit
    # yum install unit-devel unit-go unit-jsc8 unit-php \
          unit-perl unit-python27 unit-python37 unit-ruby
    

Note

Control socket is located here: /var/run/unit/control.sock.

RHEL§

  1. To configure Unit repository, create the following file named /etc/yum.repos.d/unit.repo:

    [unit]
    name=unit repo
    baseurl=https://packages.nginx.org/unit/rhel/$releasever/$basearch/
    gpgcheck=0
    enabled=1
    
  2. Install Unit base package and additional packages you would like to use.

    # yum install unit
    # yum install unit-devel unit-go unit-jsc8 unit-php \
          unit-perl unit-python
    

Note

Control socket is located here: /var/run/unit/control.sock.

Ubuntu§

  1. Download the NGINX signing key used for our repositories and packages and add it to apt’s keyring:

    # curl -O https://nginx.org/keys/nginx_signing.key
    # apt-key add nginx_signing.key
    

    This eliminates the ‘packages cannot be authenticated’ warnings during installation.

  2. To configure Unit repository, create the following file named /etc/apt/sources.list.d/unit.list:

    Ubuntu 16.04:

    deb https://packages.nginx.org/unit/ubuntu/ xenial unit
    deb-src https://packages.nginx.org/unit/ubuntu/ xenial unit
    

    Ubuntu 18.04:

    deb https://packages.nginx.org/unit/ubuntu/ bionic unit
    deb-src https://packages.nginx.org/unit/ubuntu/ bionic unit
    

    Ubuntu 18.10:

    deb https://packages.nginx.org/unit/ubuntu/ cosmic unit
    deb-src https://packages.nginx.org/unit/ubuntu/ cosmic unit
    
  3. Install Unit base package and additional packages you would like to use.

    Ubuntu 16.04:

    # apt update
    # apt install unit
    # apt install unit-dev unit-go unit-jsc8 unit-php unit-perl unit-python2.7 \
          unit-python3.5 unit-ruby
    

    Ubuntu 18.04:

    # apt update
    # apt install unit
    # apt install unit-dev unit-go1.9 unit-go1.10 unit-jsc8 unit-jsc10 unit-php \
          unit-perl unit-python2.7 unit-python3.6 unit-ruby
    

    Ubuntu 18.10:

    # apt update
    # apt install unit
    # apt install unit-dev unit-go1.9 unit-go1.10 unit-jsc8 unit-jsc11 unit-php \
          unit-perl unit-python2.7 unit-python3.6 unit-python3.7 unit-ruby
    

Note

Control socket is located here: /var/run/control.unit.sock.

Startup and Shutdown§

Run unitd -h or unitd --version to verify Unit is installed or check its settings. To manage the installation:

# systemctl enable unit  # Enable auto startup after installation
# systemctl restart unit # Start or restart Unit
# systemctl stop unit    # Stop a running Unit
# systemctl disable unit # Disable auto startup

Community Repositories§

Warning

Distributions listed here are maintained by respective communities, not NGINX. Proceed with caution.

Alpine Linux§

To install core Unit executables using Alpine Linux packages:

# apk update
# apk upgrade
# apk add unit

To install service manager files and specific language modules:

# apk add unit-openrc unit-perl unit-php7 unit-python3 unit-ruby

Note

Control socket is located here: /run/control.unit.sock.

Arch Linux§

To install Unit using the Arch User Repository (AUR):

# pacman -S git
$ git clone https://aur.archlinux.org/nginx-unit.git
$ cd nginx-unit

Warning

Verify that the PKGBUILD and accompanying files are not malicious or untrustworthy. AUR packages are entirely user produced without pre-moderation; you use them at your own risk.

$ makepkg -si

Note

Control socket is located here: /run/nginx-unit.control.sock.

CentOS/RHEL SCLs§

If you use SCLo Software Collections in your environment, you can install Unit’s PHP modules as packages from the corresponding repo. Besides other dependencies, the packages require core Unit installation.

CentOS:

# yum install centos-release-scl
# yum install --enablerepo=centos-sclo-sclo-testing \
      sclo-php70-unit-php sclo-php71-unit-php sclo-php72-unit-php

RHEL:

# cd /etc/yum.repos.d/
# wget https://copr.fedorainfracloud.org/coprs/rhscl/centos-release-scl/repo/epel-7/rhscl-centos-release-scl-epel-7.repo
# yum install centos-release-scl
# yum install --enablerepo=centos-sclo-sclo-testing \
      sclo-php70-unit-php sclo-php71-unit-php sclo-php72-unit-php

FreeBSD§

To install Unit using FreeBSD packages, update the repository and install the package:

# pkg install -y unit

Note

Control socket is located here: /var/run/unit/control.unit.sock.

To install Unit using FreeBSD ports, update your port collection.

For portsnap:

# portsnap fetch update

For svn:

# svn update /usr/ports

Next, browse to the port path to build and install the port:

# cd /usr/ports/www/unit
# make
# make install

Warning

Here, make is used in port configuration. To make a Unit build using our repositories, see below.

Note

Control socket is located here: /var/run/unit/control.unit.sock.

Gentoo§

To install Unit using Portage, update the repository and install the package:

# emerge --sync
# emerge www-servers/nginx-unit

Note

Control socket is located here: /run/nginx-unit.sock.

Remi’s RPM Repo§

Remi’s RPM repository, which hosts the latest versions of the PHP stack for CentOS, Fedora, and RHEL, also has the base Unit package and the PHP modules.

To use Remi’s versions of Unit packages, configure Remi’s RPM repo first. Remi’s PHP language modules also work with the base Unit package from our own repository.

Next, install Unit and the PHP modules you want:

# yum install --enablerepo=remi unit php54-unit-php php55-unit-php \
      php56-unit-php php70-unit-php php71-unit-php php72-unit-php php73-unit-php

Note

Control socket is located here: /var/run/unit/control.sock.

Node.js Package§

Unit’s Node.js package is called unit-http. It uses Unit’s libunit library; your Node.js applications require the package to run in Unit. You can install it from the NPM repository.

Install libunit from unit-dev/unit-devel packages or build it from sources. Next, install unit-http globally:

# npm install -g --unsafe-perm unit-http

Warning

The unit-http package is platform dependent due to optimizations; you can’t move it across systems with the node-modules directory. Global installation avoids such scenarios; just relink the migrated app.

Next, simply use the package in your Unit-hosted app instead of the built-in http.

If you update Unit later, make sure to update the NPM package as well:

# npm update -g --unsafe-perm unit-http

Note

You can also build and install unit-http manually.

Source Code§

Getting Sources§

You can obtain Unit source code from our official Mercurial repository, its GitHub mirror, or in a tarball.

If you’d like to use Mercurial:

$ hg clone https://hg.nginx.org/unit
$ cd unit

If you prefer Git:

$ git clone https://github.com/nginx/unit
$ cd unit

To download sources directly from our site:

$ curl -O https://unit.nginx.org/download/unit-1.8.0.tar.gz
$ tar xzf unit-1.8.0.tar.gz
$ cd unit-1.8.0

Installing Required Software§

Before configuring and compiling Unit, install the required build tools plus the library files for available languages (Go, Node.js, PHP, Perl, Python, and Ruby) and the other features you want Unit to support.

The commands below assume you are configuring Unit with all supported languages and features; otherwise, skip the packages you aren’t going to use.

Debian, Ubuntu§

# apt install build-essential
# apt install golang
# curl -sL https://deb.nodesource.com/setup_<Node.js version>.x | bash -; apt install nodejs
# apt install php-dev libphp-embed
# apt install libperl-dev
# apt install python-dev
# apt install ruby-dev
# apt install openjdk-8-jdk
# apt install libssl-dev

Amazon Linux, CentOS, Fedora, RHEL§

# yum install gcc make
# yum install golang
# curl -sL https://rpm.nodesource.com/setup_<Node.js version>.x | bash -; yum install nodejs
# yum install php-devel php-embedded
# yum install perl-devel perl-libs
# yum install python-devel
# yum install ruby-devel
# yum install java-1.8.0-openjdk-devel
# yum install openssl-devel

FreeBSD§

Ports:

# cd /usr/ports/lang/go/ && make install clean
# cd /usr/ports/www/node/ && make install clean
# cd /usr/ports/www/npm/ && make install clean && npm i -g node-gyp
# cd /usr/ports/lang/php73/ && make install clean
# cd /usr/ports/lang/perl5.28/ && make install clean
# cd /usr/ports/lang/python/ && make install clean
# cd /usr/ports/lang/ruby25/ && make install clean
# cd /usr/ports/java/openjdk8/ && make install clean
# cd /usr/ports/security/openssl/ && make install clean

Packages:

# pkg install go
# pkg install node && pkg install npm && npm i -g node-gyp
# pkg install php73
# pkg install perl5
# pkg install python
# pkg install ruby25
# pkg install openjdk8
# pkg install openssl

Configuring Sources§

First, run system checks and create the Makefile that you will update during language module setup:

$ ./configure <command-line options>

General ./configure options:

--help

Displays a brief summary of common ./configure options.

For language-specific details, run ./configure <language> --help or see below.

These options control the compilation process:

--cc=pathname

Specific C compiler pathname.

The default value is cc.

--cc-opt=options, --ld-opt=options
 

Additional C compiler and linker options.

The default values are empty strings.

The following option pair controls Unit’s runtime privileges:

--group=name, --user=name
 

Group name and username to run Unit’s non-privileged processes.

The default values are user’s primary group and nobody, respectively.

These flags enable or disable support of certain features:

--debugEnables the debug log.
--no-ipv6Disables IPv6 support.
--no-unix-sockets
 Disables Unix domain sockets support.
--openssl

Enables OpenSSL support. Make sure that OpenSSL (1.0.1 and later) header files and libraries are available in your compiler’s search path.

To customize the path, provide the --cc-opt and --ld-opt options; alternatively, set CFLAGS and LDFLAGS environment variables before running ./configure.

For details, see SSL/TLS and Certificates.

The last option group customizes Unit’s runtime directory structure:

--prefix=prefix
 

Destination directory prefix for path options: --bindir, --sbindir, --libdir, --incdir, --modules, --state, --pid, --log, and --control.

The default value is an empty string.

--bindir=directory, --sbindir=directory
 

Directory paths for end-user and sysadmin executables.

The default values are bin and sbin, respectively.

--control=socket
 

Control API socket address; Unix (with unix: prefix), IPv4, or IPv6 socket can be used.

Warning

For security reasons, avoid opening sockets on public interfaces in production.

The default value is unix:control.unit.sock, created as root with 600 permissions.

--incdir=directory, --libdir=directory
 

Directory paths for libunit header files and libraries.

The default values are include and lib, respectively.

--log=pathname

Pathname for Unit’s log.

The default value is unit.log.

--modules=directory
 

Directory path for Unit’s language modules.

The default value is modules.

--pid=pathname

Pathname for the PID file of Unit’s daemon process.

The default value is unit.pid.

--state=directory
 

Directory path for Unit’s state storage. It contains runtime configuration, certificates, and other records; if you migrate your installation, simply copy the entire directory.

Warning

Unit state includes sensitive data; it must be owned by root with 700 permissions.

The default value is state.

Directory Structure§

To customize Unit installation and runtime directories, you can both:

  • Set the --prefix and path options (their relative settings are prefix-based) during configuration to set up the runtime file structure: Unit will use these settings to locate its modules, state, and other files.
  • Set the DESTDIR variable during installation. Unit file structure will be placed at the specified directory, which can be either the final installation target or an intermediate staging location.

Coordinate these two options as necessary to customize the directory structure. One common scenario is installation based on absolute paths.

  1. Set absolute runtime paths with --prefix and path options:

    $ ./configure --state=/var/lib/unit --log=/var/log/unit.log \
                  --control=unix:/run/control.unit.sock --prefix=/usr/local/
    

    This configuration will access its state, log, and control socket at custom locations; other files will be accessed by default prefix-based paths: /usr/local/sbin/, /usr/local/modules/, and so on.

  2. For further packaging or containerization, specify DESTDIR at installation to place the files in a staging location while preserving their relative structure. Otherwise, omit DESTDIR for direct installation.

An alternative scenario is a build that you can move around the filesystem.

  1. Set relative runtime paths with --prefix and path options:

    $ ./configure --state=config --log=log/unit.log \
                  --control=unix:control/control.unit.sock --prefix=movable
    

    This configuration will access its files by prefix-based paths (both default and custom): <working directory>/movable/sbin/, <working directory>/movable/config/, and so on.

  2. Specify DESTDIR while installing the build. You can relocate such builds when needed, making sure to move the entire file structure and start binaries from the base directory so that relative paths stay valid:

    $ cd <DESTDIR>
    # movable/sbin/unitd <command-line options>
    

You can combine these approaches; however, take care to understand how your settings work together.

Configuring Modules§

Next, configure a module for each language you want to use with Unit. The ./configure <language> commands set up individual language modules and place module-specific instructions in the Makefile.

Note

Unit can run apps in several versions of a language if you build and install a module for each version.

Configuring Go§

When you run ./configure go, Unit sets up the Go package that your applications will use to run in Unit. To use the package, install it in your Go environment. Available configuration options:

--go=pathname

Specific Go executable pathname, also used for targets in make commands.

The default value is go.

--go-path=directory
 

Custom directory path for Go package installation.

The default value is $GOPATH.

Note

The ./configure script doesn’t alter the GOPATH environment variable. The two paths (configuration-time --go-path and compile-time GOPATH) must be coherent at build time for Go to locate the Unit package.

Configuring Java§

When you run ./configure java, the script configures a module to support running Java Web Applications in Unit. Available command options:

--home=directory
 

Directory path for Java utilities and header files (required to build the module).

The default value is the java.home setting.

--jars=directory
 

Directory path for Unit’s custom .jar files.

The default value is the Java module path.

--lib-path=directory
 

Directory path for the libjvm.so library.

The default value is derived from JDK settings.

--local-repo=directory
 

Directory path for local .jar repository.

The default value is $HOME/.m2/repository/.

--repo=directory
 

URL path for remote Maven repository.

The default value is http://central.maven.org/maven2/.

--module=filename
 

Name of the Java module to be built (<module>.unit.so), also used for targets in make commands.

The default value is java.

To configure a module called java11.unit.so with OpenJDK 11.0.1:

$ ./configure java --module=java11 \
                   --home=/Library/Java/JavaVirtualMachines/jdk-11.0.1.jdk/Contents/Home

Configuring Node.js§

When you run ./configure nodejs, Unit sets up the unit-http package that your applications will use to run in Unit. Available configuration options:

--local=directory
 

Local directory path for Node.js package installation.

By default, the package is installed globally (recommended).

--node=pathname
 

Specific Node.js executable pathname, also used for targets in make commands.

The default value is node.

--npm=pathname

Specific NPM executable pathname.

The default value is npm.

--node-gyp=pathname
 

Specific node-gyp executable pathname.

The default value is node-gyp.

Configuring Perl§

When you run ./configure perl, the script configures a module to support running Perl scripts as applications in Unit. Available command options:

--include=directory
 

Directory path to Perl headers (required to build the module).

The default is Perl’s $Config<archlib>/CORE directory.

--perl=pathname
 

Specific Perl executable pathname.

The default value is perl.

--module=filename
 

Name of the Perl module to be built (<module>.unit.so), also used for targets in make commands.

The default value is the filename of the perl executable.

To configure a module called perl-5.20.unit.so for Perl 5.20.2:

$ ./configure perl --module=perl-5.20 \
                   --perl=perl5.20.2

Configuring PHP§

When you run ./configure php, the script configures a module to support running PHP applications in Unit via PHP’s embed SAPI. Available command options:

--config=pathname
 

Pathname of the php-config script invoked to configure the PHP module.

The default value is php-config.

--lib-path=directory
 Directory path of PHP’s embed SAPI library file (libphp<version>.so or .a).
--lib-staticLinks the static embed SAPI library (libphp<version>.a); requires --lib-path. If this option is omitted, dynamic SAPI library (libphp<version>.so) is used.
--module=filename
 

Name of the PHP module to be built (<module>.unit.so), also used for targets in make commands.

The default value is config’s filename without the -config suffix (thus, /usr/bin/php7-config yields php7).

To configure a module called php70.unit.so for PHP 7.0:

$ ./configure php --module=php70 \
                  --config=/usr/lib64/php7.0/bin/php-config \
                  --lib-path=/usr/lib64/php7.0/lib64

Configuring Python§

When you run ./configure python, the script configures a module to support running Python scripts as applications in Unit. Available command options:

--config=pathname
 

Pathname of the python-config script invoked to configure the Python module.

The default value is python-config.

--lib-path=directory
 Custom directory path of the Python runtime library to use with Unit.
--module=filename
 

Name of the Python module to be built (<module>.unit.so), also used for targets in make commands.

The default value is config’s filename without the -config suffix (thus, /usr/bin/python3-config yields python3).

To configure a module called py33.unit.so for Python 3.3:

$ ./configure python --module=py33 \
                     --config=python-config-3.3

Configuring Ruby§

When you run ./configure ruby, the script configures a module to support running Ruby scripts as applications in Unit. Available command options:

--module=filename
 

Name of the Ruby module to be built (<module>.unit.so), also used for targets in make commands.

The default value is the filename of the ruby executable.

--ruby=pathname
 

Specific Ruby executable pathname.

The default value is ruby.

To configure a module called ru23.unit.so for Ruby 2.3:

$ ./configure ruby --module=ru23 \
                   --ruby=ruby23

Building and Installing Unit§

To build Unit executables and language modules that you have ./configure’d earlier and install them:

$ make
# make install

You can also build and install language modules individually; the specific method depends on whether the language module is embedded in Unit or packaged externally.

Embedded Language Modules§

To build and install Unit modules for Java, PHP, Perl, Python, or Ruby after configuration, run make <module> and make <module>-install, for example:

$ make perl-5.20
# make perl-5.20-install

External Language Packages§

To build and install Unit packages for Go and Node.js after configuration, run make <go>-install and make <node>-install, for example:

# make go-install
# make node-install

Note

To install the Node.js package locally, run make <node>-local-install:

# make node-local-install

If you haven’t specified the local directory with ./configure nodejs earlier, provide it here: DESTDIR=/your/project/directory. If both options are specified, DESTDIR prefixes the local value.

However, the recommended method is global installation.

If you customize the executable pathname with go or node, use the following pattern:

$ ./configure nodejs --node=/usr/local/bin/node8.12
# make /usr/local/bin/node8.12-install

$ ./configure go --go=/usr/local/bin/go1.7
# make /usr/local/bin/go1.7-install

Startup§

We advise installing Unit from precompiled packages; in this case, startup is configured automatically.

Even if you install Unit otherwise, manual startup isn’t recommended. Instead, configure a service manager such as OpenRC or systemd or create an rc.d script to launch the Unit daemon using the options below.

Run unitd as root from the sbin installation subdirectory. Usually, default compile-time settings don’t require override; use the --help option to review their values. For details and security notes, see here.

General options:

--help, -hDisplays a brief summary of Unit’s command-line options and their default values that were configured at compile time.
--no-daemonRuns Unit in non-daemon mode.
--versionDisplays Unit version and ./configure settings it was built with.

The following options override compile-time settings:

--control socket
 Address of the control API socket. IPv4, IPv6, and Unix domain sockets are supported.
--group name, --user name
 Group name and user name used to run Unit’s non-privileged processes.
--log pathnamePathname for the Unit log.
--modules directory
 Directory path for Unit language modules (<module>.unit.so files).
--pid pathnamePathname for the PID file of Unit’s main process.
--state directory
 Directory path for Unit state storage.