How to create your own forum with Discourse

How to use the Discourse forum InstantApp

This page shows you how to use the Discourse forum InstantApp on your C1 server.


Discourse is an open source Internet forum software application. Discourse breaks with existing forum software by including features recently popularized by large social networks.

There are four steps to deploy the Discourse InstantApp

  • Create and start a new cloud instance
  • Open the mail ports to send e-mail
  • Log into Discourse
  • Make your account admin

Create the Discourse server

Before starting, click the “Create a Server” button in the control panel.

Control Panel

You will land on the server-creation page where you can choose the Discourse image in the InstantApps tab for your Cloud Instance:

Control Panel

Choose the server type and click on the Create a Server button. This action starts your server.

Open the mail ports to send e-mail

To avoid spam, remote mail ports cannot be reached from our infrastructure by default. As Discourse requires to send mail, we need to open them. Your account needs to be validated to perform this operation. To get your account reviewed, please contact our assistance.

Click on the Security Groups tab to enter the security-groups page. Click the Create a new Security Group button and input the security group name and description.

Create security group

Check the Enable SMTP box to unblock the mail ports.

Configure security group

Go back to your servers details end select the security group previously created. The new Security Group configuration will be applied automatically on Virtual Cloud Instances. BareMetal Cloud Instances need to be hard rebooted from the management console to configure the new rules.

Log into Discourse

Your Discourse C1 server is now configured and ready to use. When your server is running, copy its public IP address and paste it in your favourite browser.

Create a new account.

Discourse account

Make your account admin

Connect your server via SSH ssh root@server-ip and change for the Discourse user su discourse.

In the Discourse repository cd /var/www/discourse run the following command:

RAILS_ENV=production bundle exec rails c

# Administratorize yourself:
# (in rails console)

> me = User.find_by_username_or_email('your-email-address')
> me.activate
> me.admin = true
> exit

# Mark yourself as the 'system user':

> SiteSetting.site_contact_username = me.username

Exit the rails console. Your Discourse server is now configured and you are admin on it. You can enjoy it and customize it through the Admin panel.

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