11.1. Lesson: Install QGIS Server
The goal for this lesson: To learn how to install QGIS Server on Debian Stretch. With negligible variations you can also follow it for any Debian based distribution like Ubuntu and its derivatives.
In Ubuntu you can use your regular user, prepending
commands requiring admin permissions. In Debian you can work as admin (
11.1.1. Follow Along: Install from packages
In this lesson we’re going to do only the install from packages as shown here .
Install QGIS Server with:
apt install qgis-server --no-install-recommends --no-install-suggests # if you want to install server plugins, also: apt install python3-qgis
QGIS Server should be used in production without QGIS Desktop (with the accompanying X Server) installed on the same machine.
11.1.2. Follow Along: QGIS Server Executable
The QGIS Server executable is
qgis_mapserv.fcgi. You can check where it has
been installed by running
find / -name 'qgis_mapserv.fcgi' which
should output something like
Optionally, if you want to do a command line test at this time you can run the
/usr/lib/cgi-bin/qgis_mapserv.fcgi --version command which should output something
QGIS 3.21.0-Master 'Master' (1c70953f1e) QGIS code revision 1c70953f1e Qt version 5.15.2 Python version 3.9.5 GDAL/OGR version 3.2.2 PROJ version 7.2.1 EPSG Registry database version v10.008 (2020-12-16) GEOS version 3.9.0-CAPI-1.16.2 SQLite version 3.34.1 OS Ubuntu 21.04
We’ll see later on how to make WMS requests.
11.1.3. HTTP Server Configuration
In order to access on the installed QGIS server from an Internet Browser we need to use an HTTP server. The Apache HTTP Server installation process is detailed in Apache HTTP Server section.
If you installed QGIS Server without running an X Server (included in Linux
Desktop) and if you also want to use the
GetPrint command then you should
install a fake X Server and tell QGIS Server to use it. You can do that by
following the Xvfb installation process.
11.1.4. Follow Along: Create another virtual host
Let’s create another Apache virtual host pointing to QGIS Server. You can
choose whatever name you like (
example.com, etc.) but for simplicity sake we’re going to use
Let’s set up the
myhostname to point to the localhost IP by adding
127.0.0.1 xto the
/etc/hostswith the following command:
sh -c "echo '127.0.0.1 myhost' >> /etc/hosts"or by manually editing the file with
We can check that
myhostpoints to the localhost by running in the terminal the
ping myhostcommand which should output:
qgis@qgis:~$ ping myhost PING myhost (127.0.0.1) 56(84) bytes of data. 64 bytes from localhost (127.0.0.1): icmp_seq=1 ttl=64 time=0.024 ms 64 bytes from localhost (127.0.0.1): icmp_seq=2 ttl=64 time=0.029 ms
Let’s try if we can access QGIS Server from the
myhostsite by doing:
curl http://myhost/cgi-bin/qgis_mapserv.fcgior by accessing the url from your Debian box browser. You will probably get:
<!DOCTYPE HTML PUBLIC "-//IETF//DTD HTML 2.0//EN"> <html><head> <title>404 Not Found</title> </head><body> <h1>Not Found</h1> <p>The requested URL /cgi-bin/qgis_mapserv.fcgi was not found on this server.</p> <hr> <address>Apache/2.4.25 (Debian) Server at myhost Port 80</address> </body></html>
Apache doesn’t know that he’s supposed to answer requests pointing to the server named
myhost. In order to setup the virtual host the simplest way would be to make a
myhost.conffile in the
/etc/apache2/sites-availabledirectory that has the same content as
qgis.demo.confexcept for the
ServerNameline that should be
ServerName myhost. You could also change where the logs go as otherwise the logs for the two virtual hosts would be shared but this is optional.
Let’s now enable the virtual host with
a2ensite myhost.confand then reload the Apache service with
service apache2 reload.
If you try again to access the http://myhost/cgi-bin/qgis_mapserv.fcgi url you’ll notice everything is working now!
11.1.5. In Conclusion
You learned how to install different QGIS Server versions from packages, how to configure Apache with QGIS Server, on Debian based Linux distros.
11.1.6. What’s Next?
Now that you’ve installed QGIS Server and it’s accessible through the HTTP protocol, we need to learn how to access some of the services it can offer. The topic of the next lesson is to learn how to access QGIS Server WMS services.