Multi-user server for Jupyter notebooks
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Technical overview | Prerequisites | Installation | Running the Hub Server | Configuration | Docker | Contributing | License | Getting help


Build Status Circle CI " Documentation Status " Google Group

With JupyterHub you can create a multi-user Hub which spawns, manages, and proxies multiple instances of the single-user Jupyter notebook (IPython notebook) server.

JupyterHub provides single-user notebook servers to many users. For example, JupyterHub could serve notebooks to a class of students, a corporate workgroup, or a science research group.

by Project Jupyter

Technical overview

Three main actors make up JupyterHub:

  • multi-user Hub (tornado process)
  • configurable http proxy (node-http-proxy)
  • multiple single-user Jupyter notebook servers (Python/IPython/tornado)

JupyterHub's basic principles for operation are:

  • Hub spawns a proxy
  • Proxy forwards all requests to Hub by default
  • Hub handles login, and spawns single-user servers on demand
  • Hub configures proxy to forward url prefixes to the single-user servers

JupyterHub also provides a REST API for administration of the Hub and users.


Before installing JupyterHub, you need:

  • Python 3.3 or greater

    An understanding of using pip for installing Python packages is recommended.

  • nodejs/npm

    Install nodejs/npm, which is available from your package manager. For example, install on Linux (Debian/Ubuntu) using:

    sudo apt-get install npm nodejs-legacy

    (The nodejs-legacy package installs the node executable and is currently required for npm to work on Debian/Ubuntu.)

  • TLS certificate and key for HTTPS communication

  • Domain name

Before running the single-user notebook servers (which may be on the same system as the Hub or not):


JupyterHub can be installed with pip, and the proxy with npm:

npm install -g configurable-http-proxy
pip3 install jupyterhub    

If you plan to run notebook servers locally, you will need to install the Jupyter notebook:

pip3 install --upgrade notebook

Running the Hub server

To start the Hub server, run the command:


Visit https://localhost:8000 in your browser, and sign in with your unix credentials.

To allow multiple users to sign into the server, you will need to run the jupyterhub command as a privileged user, such as root. The wiki describes how to run the server as a less privileged user, which requires more configuration of the system.


The getting started document contains the basics of configuring a JupyterHub deployment.

The JupyterHub tutorial provides a video and documentation that explains and illustrates the fundamental steps for installation and configuration. Repo | Tutorial documentation

Generate a default configuration file

Generate a default config file:

jupyterhub --generate-config

Customize the configuration, authentication, and process spawning

Spawn the server on with https:

jupyterhub --ip --port 443 --ssl-key my_ssl.key --ssl-cert my_ssl.cert

The authentication and process spawning mechanisms can be replaced, which should allow plugging into a variety of authentication or process control environments. Some examples, meant as illustration and testing of this concept:


A starter docker image for JupyterHub gives a baseline deployment of JupyterHub.

Important: This jupyterhub/jupyterhub image contains only the Hub itself, with no configuration. In general, one needs to make a derivative image, with at least a setting up an Authenticator and/or a Spawner. To run the single-user servers, which may be on the same system as the Hub or not, Jupyter Notebook version 4 or greater must be installed.

Starting JupyterHub with docker

The JupyterHub docker image can be started with the following command:

docker run -d --name jupyterhub jupyterhub/jupyterhub jupyterhub

This command will create a container named jupyterhub that you can stop and resume with docker stop/start.

The Hub service will be listening on all interfaces at port 8000, which makes this a good choice for testing JupyterHub on your desktop or laptop.

If you want to run docker on a computer that has a public IP then you should (as in MUST) secure it with ssl by adding ssl options to your docker configuration or using a ssl enabled proxy.

Mounting volumes will allow you to store data outside the docker image (host system) so it will be persistent, even when you start a new image.

The command docker exec -it jupyterhub bash will spawn a root shell in your docker container. You can use the root shell to create system users in the container. These accounts will be used for authentication in JupyterHub's default configuration.


If you would like to contribute to the project, please read our contributor documentation and the

For a development install, clone the repository and then install from source:

git clone
cd jupyterhub
pip3 install -r dev-requirements.txt -e .

If the pip3 install command fails and complains about lessc being unavailable, you may need to explicitly install some additional JavaScript dependencies:

npm install

This will fetch client-side JavaScript dependencies necessary to compile CSS.

You may also need to manually update JavaScript and CSS after some development updates, with:

python3 js    # fetch updated client-side js
python3 css   # recompile CSS from LESS sources

We use pytest for testing. To run tests:

pytest jupyterhub/tests


We use a shared copyright model that enables all contributors to maintain the copyright on their contributions.

All code is licensed under the terms of the revised BSD license.

Getting help

We encourage you to ask questions on the mailing list, and you may participate in development discussions or get live help on Gitter.