Ubuntu Nginx EC2 instance w/ Node.js, Express as RESTful API, React
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RexRobotix - AWS

October 24, 2018

David Eliason


This is a Single Page App (SPA) using the MERN stack to provide CRUD functionality. This is built upon an EC2 instance which has a custom VPC, subnet, route table, internet gateway.

Express server is at port 8080, and the react client uses a proxy to connect to the server using a production build.

Please note that this is a working codebase but since I am developing within the AWS Free Tier, I am using my EC2 instance for my "real" app, which is www.360enlight.com

The code for this repo was used to explore working with the technologies used for that project.


  1. Created Custom VPC with CIDR block 2 subnets in different Availability Zones (AZ) 1a. create public-facing subnet us-west-2a 1b. create private subnet us-west-2b 1c. created internet gateway attached to the VPC 1d. created Route Table for public-facing subnet 1e. Auto-assigned IP addressed for public subnet
  2. Created EC2 instance of Ubuntu 16.04 helpful tutorial 2a. ssh'd into the EC2 instance 2b. updated server
sudo apt-get update && sudo apt-get upgrade -y

2c. installed Nginx

sudo apt-get install nginx -y

2d. Started Nginx

sudo systemctl start nginx
  1. Installed Node.js 3.1 updated system
sudo apt-get update

3.2 install packages

sudo apt-get install build-essential libssl-dev

3.3 install nvm

curl -o- https://raw.githubusercontent.com/creationix/nvm/v0.33.11/install.sh | bash

3.4 installed node.js version 11.0.0

nvm install 11.0.0

3.5 updated Nginx config file for adding domain

  • all HTTP web traffic redirected to port 8080 4.0 Used Route53 to point DNS name to rexrobotix.com 5.0 Created key for Github within project folder, then added that key to Github, and thus able to clone repo to EC2 instance 6.0 Server-side 6.1 created simple express server instance and spun up on 8080, route53 worked correctly displaying server output with mongoDB connection accessing collection 6.2 created CRA build on remote server, then spun up server to serve those files 6.3 added another route, this one to handle POST coming from the submitted Add component