Gem for using Capistrano to deploy NodeJS servers that utilize the forever package
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This gem provides some Capistrano3 tasks for deploying NodeJS servers using the npm package Forever to make sure that that application runs forever. The gem is named 'capistrano-4ever', as 'capistrano-forever' was taken (thus, perhaps, rendering this gem redundant). In any case, this gem namespaces under 'forever' instead of '4ever', and so the two gems are incompatible.

Available via RubyGems


Add this line to your application's Gemfile:

gem 'capistrano-4ever'

And then execute:

% bundle

Or install it yourself as:

% gem install capistrano-4ever


Require in Capfile:

require 'capistrano/forever'

Configuration options to be set in deploy.rb

:forever_env_variables : Any environmental variables you'd like, as a hash. I recommend setting NODE_ENV here.
:forever_path : Path to globally installed forever binary.
:forever_app : The application you're deploying.
:forever_target_path : The target path. Defaults to Capistrano's release_path. I recommend that you don't set this.
:forever_flags : Flags to pass to the forever binary as a string.

  • NB: Order is important here! Ape the order in the example below or play around, but don't be frustrated if something that seems like it should work doesn't. This is due to how the forever binary parses options.

Configuration defaults

Configuration symbol Default
:forever_env_variables {}
:forever_path 'forever' (let env take care of pathing)
:forever_app 'main.js'
:forever_target_path Capistrano's release_path
:forever_flags '--append --uid <forever_app>'

Configuration recommendations

I recommend setting:
-l : So that you can have a shared logfile across deploys
--append : Append to logfiles and don't die when the logfile exists
--minUptime : If nothing else, keep NodeJS from complaing that you didn't set it.
--spinSleepTime : See above
--uid <string> : Set a custom string so that this gem will be able to stop previously-started instances.


set :forever_env_variables, {'NODE_ENV' => "#{fetch(:npm_env)}"}
set :forever_path, '/usr/bin/forever'
set :forever_app, 'dog-sitting-calendar.js'
set :forever_target_path, '/var/www/dogsit'
set :forever_flags, [ "-l #{fetch :forever_target_path}/log/forever.log",
                      '--minUptime 1000',
                      '--spinSleepTime 1000',
                      "--uid '#{fetch :forever_app}'" ].join(' ')

Custom tasks

% bundle exec cap <environment> forever:<task>
  • check : Check for forever binary on deploy target
    • Displays human-readable output; not for scripting
  • start : Start NodeJS server with forever
  • stop: Stop NodeJS server with forever
  • restart : Restart NodeJS server with forever
  • stop_all : Stop all NodeJS servers managed by forever on target server
  • restart_all : Restart all NodeJS servers managed by forever on target server


  1. Fork it ( )
  2. Create your feature branch (git checkout -b new-feature)
  3. Commit your changes (git commit -am 'Added a neat feature!')
  4. Push to the branch (git push origin new-feature)
  5. Create a new Pull Request