Install ChatWoot On a Vultr VPS Running Ubuntu

Published: 1 month ago

ChatWoot is an open source live chat tool bringing you enterprise level features for free. It has roughly 10,000 stars on GitHub and has features like real time reporting, automatic agent assignment, chatbots, shared inboxes, and more.

This guide describes how to install ChatWoot on a Vultr VPS running Ubuntu 20.04 LTS. If you'd like to follow along, get $25 in free Vultr credit when you sign up using the banner below.

We've published other tutorials about Chatwoot including:

We have also been featured in the Chatwoot documentation!

https://www.chatwoot.com/docs/self-hosted/deployment/caprover

Prerequisites

To install ChatWoot, you need root access to a Vultr VPS running Ubuntu 20.04 LTS. Currently, 20.04 LTS is the only Unix environment officially supported by ChatWoot.

According to ChatWoot, your VPS should have at minimum:

  • A 4 core CPU, which will support up to 10,000 conversions per day.
  • 4 GBs of ram, which will support up to 10,000 conversions per day.
  • At least 5-10 GBs of storage.
  • 100MB REDIS Cache

Despite the ram suggestion, we find that using the Vultr VPS $10/mo Cloud Compute instances with Chatwoot works well for low-volume installations.

Video Tutorial

If you'd like our written instructions, scroll past this section. The video tutorial describes how to set up the Vultr instance and install ChatWoot on it.

Installation

Connect via SSH to your Vultr VPS, and run the following commands:

wget https://raw.githubusercontent.com/chatwoot/chatwoot/master/deployment/setup_20.04.sh -O setup.sh chmod 755 setup.sh

This is a deployment script, created by ChatWoot, intended to make the installation of their software on an Ubuntu server seamless. It’ll install everything you need to run ChatWoot, like Ruby, Node and more, automatically.

Execute the script by running:

./setup.sh master

This will install all dependencies as well as the most up to date version of ChatWoot. This process may take around 10-30 minutes.

After this process is finished, ChatWoot will be accessible at http://{your_ip_address}:3000.

Note: Don’t close your SSH session – there are still more steps to go.

Congratulations, you’ve installed ChatWoot. Now, it’s time to configure the tool and get it ready for production use.

Configure the Domain

First, we need to configure the production domain. This step is optional, but suggested. To do this, simply create an A record for your domain or subdomain. We typically use a subdomain like so: chat.mydomain.com.

Point this A record to the IP of your Vultr VPS.

Return to your SSH session. When prompted with `Would you like to configure Webserver and SSL?` type yes.

Enter your domain name.

Then, it’s time to configure the free SSL (by LetsEncrypt). This is done by entering your email and accepting a few terms and conditions. Now you're good to move to the next step!

Update Environment Variables

For ChatWoot to function, we need to update the Environment Variables. For production, you’ll need to set up an Email Provider (we use Mailgun with Chatwoot, and it works well), confirm the frontend domain, and configure storage.

Refer to the ChatWoot docs for more information on what environment variables must be updated: https://www.chatwoot.com/docs/self-hosted/configuration/environment-variables

ChatWoot allows you to use local storage. This works well with our Vultr VPS – if you run out of storage, simply add additional block storage to your server. Chatwoot will also allow you to connect to external storage. For higher traffic production set ups, this may be a more cost effective option as you can leverage the Amazon S3, Microsoft Azure or GCS platforms.

Once your configuration is complete and you’ve saved the .env file, restart your Vultr Server.

Configure Chatwoot

Graphical user interface, application, Teams

Description automatically generated

Navigate to your ChatWoot domain, and you’ll be greeted with this screen. Enter all the information, creating an admin account.

It’s important that you update the .env file before this step, as ChatWoot will verify your email by sending a verification link to the “work email”. Without STMP credentials associated with the installation, this email will never be delivered, and you’ll be unable to access the application.

Conclusion

Via Tony Sebastian

At this point, you should have a working installation of ChatWoot, with your production domain, and configured to have the proper environment variables set. You can now use ChatWoot - free, open source, live chat for you and your clients!

Once you’ve finalized your ChatWoot setup by using their frontend interface, you’ll be able to install the live chat widget on any website or app by placing the given JavaScript code in the header.

There are additional features that can be set up with ChatWoot, such as integration with Facebook and Slack, custom email templates, and more. Refer to the Official ChatWoot documentation for more information regarding that.

References

https://www.chatwoot.com/docs/self-hosted/deployment/linux-vm

https://github.com/chatwoot/chatwoot

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