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Nginx Server Configs


Nginx Server Configs is a collection of configuration snippets that can help your server improve the website's performance and security, while also ensuring that resources are served with the correct content-type and are accessible, if needed, even cross-domain.

Getting Started

Using the Nginx server configs repo directly has a few required steps to be able to work.

Check nginx.conf settings

The first thing to check is that the nginx.conf file contains appropriate values for your specific install.

Most specific variables are:

  • user
  • error_log
  • pid
  • access_log

Nginx test and restart

  • To verify Nginx config

    nginx -t
  • To verify Nginx config with a custom file

    nginx -t -c nginx.conf
  • To reload Nginx and apply the new config

    nginx -s reload

Basic structure

This repository has the following structure:

├── conf.d/
│   ├── default.conf
│   └── templates/
├── h5bp/
│   ├── basic.conf
│   ├── location/
│   └── .../
├── mime.types
└── nginx.conf
  • conf.d/

    This directory should contain all the server definitions.

    Except if they are dot prefixed or non .conf extension, all files in this folder are loaded automatically.

    • templates folder

      Files in this folder contain a server template for secure and non-secure hosts. They are intended to be copied in the conf.d folder with all occurrences changed to the target host.

  • h5bp/

    This directory contains config snippets (mixins) to be included as desired.

    There are two types of config files provided, individual config snippets and combined config files which provide convenient defaults.

    • basic.conf

      This file loads a small subset of the rules provided by this repository to add expires headers, allow cross-domain fonts and protect system files from web access. The basic.conf file includes the rules which are recommended to always be defined.

    • location/

      Files in this folder contain one or more location directives. They are intended to be loaded in the server context (or, in a nested location block).

  • mime.types

    The mime.types file is responsible for mapping file extensions to mime types.

  • nginx.conf

    The main Nginx config file.


As a reference

To use as reference requires no special installation steps, download/checkout the repository to a convenient location and adapt your existing Nginx configuration incorporating the desired functionality from this repository.

Download the latest release archive.


To use directly, replace the Nginx config directory with this repository. For example:

nginx -s stop
cd /etc
mv nginx nginx-previous
git clone nginx
# install-specific edits

Manage sites

cd /etc/nginx/conf.d
  • Creating a new site

    cp templates/ .actual-hostname.conf
    sed -i 's/' .actual-hostname.conf
  • Enabling a site

    mv .actual-hostname.conf actual-hostname.conf
  • Disabling a site

    mv actual-hostname.conf .actual-hostname.conf
nginx -s reload


  • Nginx v1.8.0+


Anyone is welcome to contribute, however, if you decide to get involved, please take a moment to review the guidelines:


Nginx Server Configs is only possible thanks to all the awesome contributors!


The code is available under the MIT license.