The Ushahidi Platform is an open source web application for information collection, vizualisation and interactive mapping. It allows people to collect and share their own stories using various mediums such as SMS, Web Forms, Email or Twitter. For more information about the platform and use cases (case studies) visit: http://www.ushahidi.com
To install the platform on your computer/server, the target system must meet the following requirements:
- PHP version 5.2.3 or greater
- MySQL version 5.0 or greater
- An HTTP Server. Kohana, which Ushahidi is built on, is known to work with the following web servers:
- Apache 1.3+
- Apache 2.0+
- Microsoft Internet Information Server (MS IIS)
- Unicode support in the operating system
The follwing is a list of PHP extensions that must be installed on your server in order for Ushahidi to run properly:
- PCRE (http://php.net/pcre) must be compiled with –enable-utf8 and –enable-unicode-properties for UTF-8 functions to work properly.
- iconv (http://php.net/iconv) is required for UTF-8 transliteration.
- mcrypt (http://php.net/mcrypt) is required for encryption.
- SPL (http://php.net/spl) is required for several core libraries.
- mbstring (http://php.net/mbstring) which speeds up Kohana's UTF-8 functions.
- cURL (http://php.net/curl) which is used to access remote sites.
- MySQL (http://php.net/mysql) is required for database access.
- IMAP (http://php.net/imap) is required for email functionality.
- GD (http://php.net/gd) is required for image processing
NOTE: Need to figure out what extensions you already have installed on your server? Here are instructions to do just that: http://jontangerine.com/silo/php/phpinfo/
Optional Server Requirements
To use Ushahidi's "Clean URLS" feature on an Apache Web Server, you will need the mod_rewrite module
and the ability to use local
Debian/Ubuntu flavours of Linux
sudo a2enmod rewrite
CentOS, OS X and Windows
Make sure the following line is NOT commented in your
To check if local
.htaccess files are allowed, verify that the "AllowOverride" directive in your Apache config
(for the web server directory in which you have installed Ushahidi) has been set to "All" i.e.:
<Directory [your-document-root-directory]> ... AllowOverride All ... </Directory>
- Clean URLs means that the URLs of your deployment will not have the 'index.php' prefix
- You MUST restart your Apache web server after making the changes outlined above
Download and extract Ushahidi
You can obtain the official release of the software from the download site. Alternatively, you can obtain the release running the latest version of the from GitHub - the files are available in .zip and .tar.gz
To unzip/extract the archive on a typical Unix/Linux command line:
tar -xvf Ushahidi_Web-xxxx.tar.gz
or in the case of a zip file:
This will create a new directory Ushahidi_Web-xxxx containing all the Ushahidi platform files and directories - Move the contents of this directory into a directory within your webserver's document root or your public HTML directory.
Ensure the following directories are writable (i.e. have their permission values set to 777)
On Unix/Linux, you can change the permissions as follows:
cd path-to-webserver-document-root-directory chmod -R 777 application/config chmod -R 777 application/cache chmod -R 777 application/logs chmod -R 777 media/uploads chmod 777 .htaccess
NOTE: The process of configuring file permissions is different for various operating systems. Here are some helpful links about permissions for the Windows (http://support.microsoft.com/kb/308419) and Unix (http://www.washington.edu/computing/unix/permissions.html) operating systems.
Create the Ushahidi database
Ushahidi stores all its information in a database. You must therefore create this database in order to install Ushahidi. This is done as follows:
mysqladmin -u 'username' -p create 'databasename'
MySQL will prompt for the password for the database password and then create the initial database files. Next, you must log in and set the database access rights:
mysql -u 'username' -p
Again, you will be prompted for the 'username' database password. At the MySQL prompt, enter the following command:
GRANT SELECT, INSERT, DELETE, UPDATE, CREATE, DROP, ALTER, INDEX on database.* TO 'username'@'localhost' IDENTIFIED BY 'password';
- 'databasename' is the name of your database
- 'username@localhost' is the name of your MySQL account
- 'password' is the password required for that username
NOTE: Your account must have all the privileges listed above in order to run Ushahidi on your webserver.
Run the install script
To run the install script, point your browser to the base url of your website: (e.g. http://www.example.com).
You will be guided through a series of screens to set up the database and site settings depending on the installation method you choose (Basic or Advanced)
For further references and documentation, head over to our wiki (http://wiki.ushahidi.com). Also, we encourage you to drop by our forums (http://forums.ushahidi.com/) if you have any additional questions or concerns.