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Getting the site up and running for development

Install required packages:

apt install python3-venv

If you haven't done it already, install and configure virtualenvwrapper. If you are unfamiliar with virtualenvwrapper, see their documentation on their website:

mkvirtualenv lutrisweb
cd lutrisweb

Once the virtualenv is created, you need to make sure that some environment variables are exported and are set to valid values, the simplest way to achieve that is to edit the postactivate script in $VIRTUAL_ENV/lutrisweb/bin/postactivate and add your exports here. The only required environment varible is the DJANGO_SETTINGS_MODULE one:

export DJANGO_SETTINGS_MODULE="lutrisweb.settings.local"

Alternatively, if you want to store additional secrets like API keys, you can place them in an environment file. You can then export values contained in this file by adding to the postactivate script:

export $(cat $HOME/Projects/website/.env.local | xargs)

Once your virtualenv is created, you can install the system and python dependencies:

# Ubuntu / Debian dependencies
sudo apt-get install build-essential git curl python3 python3-pip \
    python3-dev imagemagick libxml2-dev libxslt1-dev libssl-dev \
    libffi-dev libpq-dev libxml2-dev libjpeg-dev

# Red Hat / Fedora dependencies
sudo dnf install libpq-devel python3-devel libxml2-devel libxslt-devel

# Python dependencies
pip3 install -r config/requirements/devel.pip --exists-action=w

To build the frontend assets (javascript and css files), you'll need Node and NPM available. If your distribution offers a version of Node that is too old, you can use NVM ( to install a more recent version.

You can then build the frontend assets:

npm install
npm run build

To watch for file changes and recompile assets on the fly, you can run in a separate terminal:

npm run watch

Once your PostgreSQL database is configured (explained in the paragraph below), run the database migrations to populate the database with tables:

./ migrate

You can create a new admin user with the command:

./ createsuperuser

Alternatively, if you want a database that is already populated with games, there are snapshots on the Github releases page:

The installer scripting documentation is not shipped with the website but with the client, if you want to build the docs, you'll need to get the client and compile the rst files into HTML. All this process is automated:

make client
make docs

Once everything is set up correctly, you should be able to run the test suite without any failures:

make test

Run the development server with:

make run

Redis configuration

The lutris websites uses Redis as a cache. Install with:

docker run -d \
    --name lutriscache \
    --restart unless-stopped \
    -p 6379:6379 \

Postgresql configuration

You can get the same Postgres server used in the Docker setup by running the following command:

docker run -d \
    --name lutrisdb \
    --restart unless-stopped \
    --shm-size 4gb \
    -e POSTGRES_PASSWORD=admin \
    -e POSGRES_DB=lutris \
    -e POSTGRES_USER=lutris \
    -p 5432:5432 \
    -v lutrisdb_backups:/backups \


sudo -u postgres psql
create user lutris;
create database lutris with owner lutris;
alter user lutris createdb;
alter database lutris owner to lutris;
alter user lutris with password 'admin';

Create a user:

sudo -u postgres create user lutris

Note that the user will need to be able to create databases in order to run tests. If you have created an user without this permission, run:

sudo -u postgres psql

Creating a database:

sudo -u postgres psql
create database lutris with owner lutris;

or (in shell):

createdb lutris -O lutris

Modify database's owner:

sudo -u postgres psql
alter database lutris owner to lutris;

Change user's password:

sudo -u postgres psql
alter user lutris with password 'admin';

Dropping all tables from the database:

drop schema public cascade;
create schema public;

Backing up the database:

pg_dump lutris > lutris.sql

Restoring a backup:

psql lutris < lutris.sql

To automate backups, make sure the Unix user has superuser privileges on PostgreSQL and run this script with cron:

cd /srv/backup/sql
backup_file="lutris-$(date +%Y-%m-%d-%H-%M).tar"
pg_dump --format=tar lutris > $backup_file
gzip $backup_file

Vue based code

Installer issues are using Vue based project stored in frontend/vue.

If you wish to develop for it, first install the dependencies and make a dev build:

cd frontend/vue
npm install
npm run build:issues-dev

The last command will run forever, watching for changes made to the source and rebuilding the project on each update. Press Ctrl+C to interrupt it.


VSCode is recommended as a primary IDE for development. It provides an out of the box support for devcontainers - a modern full-featured development environment.


Latest version of VSCode with [devcontainers]( extension and Docker installed on your system.

After cloning the project choose the Reopen in Container` option from the VSCode menu. The bootstrap process will run automatically during the initial execution, encompassing all the steps mentioned in this tutorial.

Reset devcontainers env

  • From the menu, opt for the Reopen Folder Locally choice.

  • Wait until all containers have been stopped, which may take up to 10 seconds.

  • Proceed to remove the SQL DB volume using the command:

    docker rm lutris-website_devcontainer_lutrisdb_1 docker volume rm lutris-website_devcontainer_postgres_data

  • Finally, select the Rebuild and Reopen in Container option from the VSCode menu.