Nginx Configuration

We use a modular approach here, with most configuration settings outsourced to individual files.

HTTP Settings

On line 47 in the above /etc/nginx/nginx.conf various options from the directory /etc/nginx/conf.d are included.

They are discussed in Global HTTP Settings.

Virtual Servers

Nginx can host multiple websites on a single installation. In Nginx a website is called a “server”. (Apache HTTPd calls them “virtual hosts”). Servers are identified by their hostname and or IP address.

Sticking to our modular approach, we define individual servers in the directory /etc/nginx/servers-available.

So to activate or disable servers, symbolic links are created or deleted in /etc/nginx/servers-enabled, pointing to server definitions in /etc/nginx/servers-available.

To activate a server:

$ sudo ln -s /etc/nginx/servers-available/ \
$ sudo service nginx reload


$ sudo rm /etc/nginx/servers-enabled/
$ sudo service nginx reload

Configuration of individual sites depends heavily on the nature of the website.

As reference we show a simple website who serves static HTML pages in Virtual Web Servers.

Test and Activate

The configuration is always tested for errors before the Nginx service starts. Alternatively a test can be requested manually:

$ sudo service nginx configtest
nginx: the configuration file /etc/nginx/nginx.conf syntax is ok
nginx: configuration file /etc/nginx/nginx.conf test is successful