Before you install Pixelfed, you will need to setup a webserver with the required dependencies:

  • An HTTP server
  • An SQL database server
  • A PHP-FPM server
  • Composer, for PHP dependency management
  • Git, for fetching updates
  • Redis, for in-memory caching and background task queueing
  • GD or ImageMagick, for image processing
  • JPEGOptim, for optimizing JPG
  • OptiPNG, for lossless PNG
  • PNGQuant, for lossy PNG

HTTP Web server

The following web servers are officially supported:

  • Apache
  • nginx

Pixelfed uses HTTPS URIs, so you will need to have HTTPS set up at the perimeter of your network before you proxy requests internally.


You can choose one of three supported database drivers:

  • MySQL (5.7+)
  • MariaDB (10.2.7+ -- 10.3.5+ recommended)
  • PostgreSQL (10+)

A note on using PostgreSQL:

PostgreSQL support is not primary -- there may be Postgre-specific bugs within Pixelfed. If you encounter any issues while running Postgre as a database, please file those issues on our Github tracker.

You will need to create a database and grant permission to an SQL user identified by a password. To do this with MySQL or MariaDB, do the following:

$ sudo mysql -u root -p

You can then create a database and grant privileges to your SQL user. The following SQL commands will create a database named pixelfed and allow it to be managed by a user pixelfed with password strong_password:


create database pixelfed;
grant all privileges on pixelfed.* to 'pixelfed'@'localhost' identified by 'strong_password';
flush privileges;

Changing database drivers:

If you decide to change database drivers later, please run a backup first! You can do this with php artisan backup:run --only-db


You can check your currently installed version of PHP by running php -v. Make sure you are running PHP >= 7.3.

You can check your currently loaded extensions by running php -m. Modules are usually enabled by editing your PHP configuration file and uncommenting the appropriate lines under the "Dynamic extensions" section. Make sure the following extensions are installed and loaded:

  • bcmath
  • ctype
  • curl
  • iconv
  • intl
  • json
  • mbstring
  • openssl
  • tokenizer
  • xml
  • zip

You will also need to enable extensions for image processing drivers:

  • For GD: enable gd
  • For ImageMagick: enable imagick

Additionally, you will need to enable extensions for database drivers:

  • For MySQL or MariaDB: enable pdo_mysql and mysqli
  • For PostgreSQL: enable pdo_pgsql and pgsql

A note about php-redis vs. predis:

Make sure you do NOT have the redis PHP extension installed/enabled! Pixelfed uses the predis library internally, so the presence of any Redis extensions can cause issues.

Finally, make sure to set the desired upload limits for your PHP processes. You will want to check the following:

  • post_max_size (default 8M, set this around or slightly greater than your desired post size limit)
  • file_uploads (default On, which it needs to be)
  • upload_max_filesize (default 2M, set this <= post_max_size)
  • max_file_uploads (default 20, but make sure it is >= your desired attachment limit)
  • max_execution_time (default 30, consider raising this to 600 or more so that longer tasks aren't interrupted)