Getting Started with WordPress on Scalingo


When a PHP application is deployed, Scalingo checks the existence of the wp-settings.php file at the root folder of your app.

During the deployment process, you’ll see the following output mentioning that the framework has correctly been detected:

-----> Detected WordPress
-----> Setting up WordPress

Or for Bedrock WordPress:

-----> Detected Bedrock WordPress
-----> Setting up Bedrock WordPress

Bedrock: a Scalingo Friendly WordPress Boilerplate

WordPress is not well suited to be directly deployed on Scalingo. They do not follow the best modern practices of web development such as 12 factor.

The easiest way to get started with WordPress on Scalingo is to click on this button:

Deploy on

This one-click deploy button uses this Scalingo Distribution. It is based on Bedrock, and install everything for your WordPress to work perfectly on a modern platform like Scalingo.

Customize the Scalingo Distribution

You may need to customize a bit the above-mentioned distribution to add a plugin or a theme for instance. Follow these instructions to get started:

  1. Clone the distribution:

    git clone
    cd scalingo-wordpress
  2. Create the application on Scalingo

    Create the application through the dashboard with a Scalingo for MySQL® addon or with the Scalingo CLI:

    scalingo create my-app
    scalingo addons-add mysql mysql-sandbox
  3. Create a public S3 Bucket with ACL disabled on AWS and configure IAM user correctly

    IAM user security policy example, with required actions:

       "Version": "2012-10-17",
       "Statement": [
           "Action": [
           "Effect": "Allow",
           "Resource": [
  4. Create a stategy policy for the newly created bucket

    Go on the newly created bucket’s details page, on Permissions tab. Scroll down to Bucket policy and enter your policy.

    Example policy with read access for everyone:

       "Version": "2012-10-17",
       "Statement": [
           "Effect": "Allow",
           "Principal": "*",
           "Action": "s3:GetObject",
           "Resource": "arn:aws:s3:::BUCKETNAME-HERE/*"
  5. Update application environment variables

    Then, update your application environment through the dashboard or with the Scalingo CLI scalingo env-set VARIABLE_NAME=VALUE:

    • DATABASE_URL: Connection string to the MySQL® database - mysql://localhost:3306/wp-bedrock - Automatically added with the Scalingo MySQL® addon
    • WP_ENV: Set to environment (development, staging, production)
    • WP_HOME: Full URL to WordPress home (e.g.
    • WP_SITEURL: Full URL to WordPress including subdirectory (e.g.
    • S3_UPLOADS_BUCKET: Name of the S3 bucket to upload files to
    • S3_UPLOADS_KEY: AWS Access Key ID for S3 authentication
    • S3_UPLOADS_SECRET: AWS Secret Key for S3 authentication
    • S3_UPLOADS_REGION: Region of the S3 bucket
    • S3_UPLOADS_OBJECT_ACL: object permission of files uploaded to S3. Defaults to public-read. Must be one of public-read, private or authenticated-read.

    You can get some random salts on the Roots WordPress Salt Generator.

  6. Add themes in web/app/themes as you would for a normal WordPress site.

    # Optionally add theme to your git repository
    git add web/app/themes
    git commit -m "Add themes"
  7. Add plugins using Composer and WordPress Packagist

    Example to add the Akismet plugin:

    composer require --ignore-platform-reqs wpackagist-plugin/akismet
  8. Deploy the application on Scalingo

    git push scalingo master
  9. Access WP Admin at

  10. Activate the S3 Uploads plugin on WP Admin plugins page and that’s it.

Deploying Pure WordPress on Scalingo

Even though it is not advised to deploy an out-of-the-box WordPress on Scalingo, there are some situations where you do not have the choice. Here are a few things you must know before going down that road.


By default, WordPress uses a configuration file to configure a deployed application. In order to add environment variables support, you must edit the config/application.php file to read the DATABASE_URL environment variable.

This can be done by adding those lines:

$mysql_url = parse_url($_ENV["DATABASE_URL"]);
$db = substr($mysql_url['path'], 1);

And changing the DB_* definitions to:

Config::define('DB_NAME', $db);
Config::define('DB_USER', $mysql_url['user']);
Config::define('DB_PASSWORD', $mysql_url['pass']);
Config::define('DB_HOST', $mysql_url['host'] . ":" . $mysql_url['port']);

You must do the same things for all your salts and keys. We recommend using a common environment variable and set it to a random string. You must adapt your config/application.php to use this variable:

$key = $_ENV["SECURE_KEY"];
Config::define('AUTH_KEY',         $key);
Config::define('SECURE_AUTH_KEY',  $key);
Config::define('LOGGED_IN_KEY',    $key);
Config::define('NONCE_KEY',        $key);
Config::define('AUTH_SALT',        $key);
Config::define('SECURE_AUTH_SALT', $key);
Config::define('LOGGED_IN_SALT',   $key);
Config::define('NONCE_SALT',       $key);

The only thing left is to define the SECURE_KEY from the dashboard or by using our CLI:

scalingo --app my-app env-set SECURE_KEY=A_RANDOM_TOKEN_HERE


By default, WordPress tries to detect if the website is reached with HTTPS. However, in an environment like Scalingo, applications are behind a routing layer which acts as proxy, which prevent WordPress to correctly detect the use of HTTPS.

To fix this problem, you need to add the following in your config/application.php file (official documentation):

  $_SERVER['HTTPS'] = 'on';

Thanks to this snippet, WordPress will look at the HTTP header X-Forwarded-Proto set by our router to ‘http’ or ‘https’ whether the website is accessed with HTTP or HTTPS. Have a look at our routing documentation for more information about this header.

Plugins and Updates

Since the container file system is volatile, plugins and addon should be installed and updated within your Git repository and never via the web interface. You must de-activate auto-update of all your WordPress components.

To do that, add the following line to your config/application.php:

Config::define('AUTOMATIC_UPDATER_DISABLED', true);

TLS Connection to Scalingo for MySQL®

If you configured your Scalingo for MySQL® with Force TLS, it is mandatory that your application connects to the database using TLS. With WordPress, you need to add the following line in your config/application.php:



The container file system is volatile and not synchronized through all your instances. So the uploads should not be stored on the file system itself. We recommend using an external service like the Amazon service: AWS S3 to store them.

You may want to have a look at a plugin such as S3 Uploads to ease the storage of your uploads on S3. As usual, this plugin must be downloaded locally and pushed to our Git repository, never via the web interface.

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Getting Started with WordPress on Scalingo

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