Update nginx without loosing configuration

Hello, i need to update my nginx to latest stable version. how can i do that without loosing my server blocks and nginx.conf file. i mean how can i backup all configuration before updating nginx and restore them back.

thanks in advance.

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Kamal Nasser
DigitalOcean Employee
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September 28, 2016
Accepted Answer


Updating nginx should not affect any config files that you have created or modified. You can update nginx to the latest version by running sudo apt-get update to update the package lists, followed by sudo apt-get install nginx.

If you want to be extra careful, you can back up the /etc/nginx directory which contains all of nginx’s config files.

sudo cp -r /etc/nginx /etc/nginx.pre-upgrade

After upgrading the package, you can delete /etc/nginx and move /etc/nginx.pre-upgrade back to /etc/nginx. However, as I said, it is unnecessary and completely optional to do it.

I just observed that a recent Nginx upgrade did the following:

  1. It clobbered my personalized /usr/share/nginx/html/index.html file, replacing it with the default Nginx welcome page
  2. It restored the /etc/nginx/conf.d/default.conf site config.

The first bullet can be addressed… from my personalized site config I can serve my static files up from a different direction.

But I don’t know how to address the 2nd bullet. Upgrading Nginx essentially takes down your website and replaces it with a welcome page.

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