How to Deploy Flask App on Droplets

How could I deploy a flask app and keep it online 24/7? I setup a nignx server already on the droplet and have the project located in /var/www/. I then deployed it by running python3 I have it running at port 8080. I can access the app by going to https://<ip>:8080. However, it doesn’t stay online 24/7 and also I want add a subdomain pointing to it. I tried creating an A record and pointing it to the IP but it doesn’t work. Any help is appreciated!

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Bobby Iliev
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February 7, 2024


Great job on getting your Flask app running on a DigitalOcean Droplet! To ensure your app stays online 24/7 and to set up a subdomain pointing to it, you’ll need to follow a few important steps.

To keep your app running continuously, especially after closing the terminal or in case of errors, using a process manager like Gunicorn is crucial. Moreover, integrating Gunicorn with systemd allows your Flask app to auto-start on boot and restart in case it crashes. Let’s set this up:

  1. Install Gunicorn:

    pip3 install gunicorn
  2. Test Run Gunicorn: First, ensure Gunicorn can serve your Flask app correctly. Replace main:app with your file and application name.

    gunicorn --workers 3 --bind unix:myapp.sock -m 007 main:app

    Here, main:app indicates that your Flask application instance is named app and is located in the file. The command starts your app with 3 worker processes, using a Unix socket for communication, which is both efficient and secure.

  3. Create a systemd Service File for Your App: Next, create a systemd service file to manage your app. Create a new file named /etc/systemd/system/yourapp.service with the following content:

    Description=Gunicorn instance to serve your Flask app
    ExecStart=/var/www/your_project/venv/bin/gunicorn --workers 3 --bind unix:yourapp.sock -m 007 main:app

    Replace your_user, /var/www/your_project, and other paths as necessary for your setup. This service file tells systemd how to start and manage your Gunicorn process.

  4. Enable and Start Your Flask App Service:

    sudo systemctl start yourapp.service
    sudo systemctl enable yourapp.service

    These commands start the service and enable it to start on boot, respectively.

  5. Configure Nginx to Proxy Requests to Gunicorn: Update your Nginx configuration to proxy requests to the Gunicorn socket as described in the previous message. Make sure to adjust the proxy_pass directive to point to the correct socket file path.

You can also follow a more in-depth guide on how to do that here:

For the subdomain setup, the process remains the same. Ensure your DNS A record points to the Droplet’s IP, configure Nginx with your subdomain, and consider securing it with an SSL certificate using Let’s Encrypt:–-configuring-nginx-to-use-ssl

Hope that this helps and happy coding and deployment!



Site Moderator
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February 7, 2024

Heya @fa452710b73e4632997145b18bc820,

First, you’ll need to configure Nginx to run as a reverse proxy so that you don’t have to call the port by only the IP or your domain to open the flask app:

In the tutorial you’ll see how to configure your Flask app with Nginx and Gunicorn. Which should do the trick for you and keep the app online 24/7

Alternatively, you can take a look at pm2. You can check that tutorial and while it’s for nodeJS, it can easily be done with your flask app as well:

Anyway, the standard approach is using the first article I gave you.

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