How to Install Dotclear CMS on Ubuntu

Dotclear CMS is open-source software that allows you to create a simple, powerful, and easy-to-maintain blog. It offers an intuitive interface for managing content from multiple categories in your blog.

It was initially designed for running blogs but now includes support for photo galleries, polls, calendars and other features as well as extensive plugin architecture – there are more than thousands of plugins and themes available for Dotclear.

In this tutorial we will walk through the installation process of Dotclear on Ubuntu 20.04 and Ubuntu 22.04 server edition with Apache 2 web server and MariaDB database.


  • A server running a fresh copy of Ubuntu with root user privileges.
  • A fully qualified domain name (FQDN) e.g.:, assigned to your server’s hostname on the Internet.
  • Public SSH access on port 22 from a client machine.

Step 1. Update the System

Update your Ubuntu system by running the following command in the terminal:

sudo apt-get update && sudo apt-get upgrade -y

and then restart it with this command:

sudo reboot now

Your system should be up-to-date after it reboots.

Step 2: Install Apache Web Server

Run the following command to install the Apache Web server.

sudo apt install -y apache2

Once the installation of Apache is finished, run the command below to verify that Apache has been installed correctly.

sudo systemctl status apache2

The output should look like this:

Apache started

This output shows that the service has been successfully up and running. However, the most effective method to verify this is to request a page from the Apache web server.

Open your browser and type this in the address bar.


Where “your_ip_address” is replaced by the actual IP address of your server. If everything has been set up correctly, you will see an Apache Default Page.

Apache default page

It is important to note that Apache would not run after the server reboot because it is not yet configured to start automatically at boot time. We will configure it to be started automatically during startup with the command below.

sudo systemctl enable apache2

Step 3: Installing MySQL Database

The MariaDB database is an open-source relational database management system (RDBMS) that consists of a server daemon, its client programs and libraries.

The following steps describe installing the MariaDB Client and MariaDB Server for Ubuntu. The installation process will configure your Ubuntu system to communicate with the MariaDB database.

You can install MariaDB Server and Client by running the following command in the terminal:

sudo apt install -y mariadb-server mariadb-client

MariaDB starts automatically when it is installed. To verify that MariaDB is running, run this command:

sudo systemctl status mariadb

The result should be something like this:

MariaDB status

If it does not start, please try starting it with:

sudo systemctl start mysql

You can ensure the service has been started correctly by rechecking its status.

Step 4: Install PHP

PHP is an open-source scripting language widely used to develop dynamic web pages.

The most common task executed on the server is to send dynamic pages over HTTP from the web server to a client’s browser. The data sent by PHP can be in any format, although it is usually HTML.

To install PHP on your Ubuntu server, run the command below:

sudo apt install -y php

The PHP extensions are managed using modules. When you install PHP, many of these modules are also installed by default.

However, to run Dotclear you need to install the following extensions:

sudo apt install libapache2-mod-php

Restart Apache with this command to load the new configuration when this is finished.

sudo systemctl restart apache2

To test PHP, create a file with this content below in /var/www/html/test.php

Then visit http://your_ip_address/test.php in your web browser to see the script’s output.

sudo nano /var/www/html/test.php

<?php phpinfo();

PHP installed

Step 5: Creating the Database for Dotclear CMS

Run this command in the terminal to connect to MariaDB with the “root” user. You will be prompted for a password. The default password is blank, so just hit Enter when asked to provide it.

mariadb -u root -p

If everything is configured correctly, you will see the following output:

This is the MariaDB prompt showing you’re connected to the MariaDB shell. This prompt allows you to enter SQL commands executed directly by MariaDB. To create a new database and user, run these commands:

GRANT ALL PRIVILEGES on dot_clear.* TO 'dot_clear_user'@'localhost' identified by '[email protected]';
flush privileges;

This is the output you should see:

Create database

Step 6: Downloading the Installation Script

First, you must create a dot_clear directory under the web root directory to save the installation script. Then change the permission of the dot_clear directory and its subdirectories with this command.

sudo mkdir -p /var/www/dot_clear
sudo chown -R $USER:$USER /var/www/dot_clear

Now, move into the dot_clear directory and download the installation script using wget command as follows:

cd /var/www/dot_clear

Download dotclear CMS

Now, set the ownership of the installation file to www-data user and group with this command:

sudo chown -R www-data:www-data /var/www/dot_clear

Step 7: Setting Up Apache Virtual Hosts for Dotclear CMS

Now you need to create a virtual host file for Dotclear in Apache. Using your favourite text editor, please create a new file at /etc/apache2/sites-available/dot_clear.conf and add the following lines.

sudo nano /etc/apache2/sites-available/dot_clear.conf
<VirtualHost *:80>
  DocumentRoot “/var/www/dot_clear”
  <Directory “/var/www/dot_clear”>
    Require all granted
    Options Indexes FollowSymLinks
    AllowOverride All
    Order allow,deny
    Allow from all
  ErrorLog ${APACHE_LOG_DIR}/error.log
  CustomLog ${APACHE_LOG_DIR}/access.log combined

Remember to replace with the domain name of your website.

Now save your file and enable the new virtual host with this command.

sudo a2dissite 000-default.conf
sudo a2ensite dot_clear.conf

If you haven’t already, restart Apache to apply the configuration changes with this command

sudo systemctl restart apache2

Step 8: Installing Dotclear CMS

Now you can run the installation script to create a new Dotclear CMS user account and complete the setup.

Open your web browser, enter the domain name in the URL bar, followed by /dotclear-loader.php, e.g.

You will be taken to the welcome page of the installer.

Dotclear CMS

Click on Retrieve and unzip Dotclear to proceed.

The installer will then ask you to provide your database connection details. Use the information you wrote in this tutorial to create your new database and user account.

Installation Wizard

Provide all the details as requested by the installer and click Continue. You will be taken to the user creation page.

Enter your new username, password, email … in the fields provided, then click Save. The installer will create the database tables for you, then it will download them to your web directory.

The installer will create the database tables for you, then it will download necessary file to your web directory. Your blog address and Administration interface will be displayed on the page.

Dotclear modules

Now open your browser and enter the web address shown. You will see a message saying Welcome to Dotclear!. Now that Dotclear has been successfully installed.

Dotclear CMS

You can login to Dotclear Dashboard with your username/password combo and start uploading posts.

Dotclear dashboard


In this post, we have covered how to install Dotclear CMS on Ubuntu. You should now be able to create a website and add content in less than 10 minutes. We hope that you found this guide helpful.