How to Install Laravel on Ubuntu 20.04 LTS

Written by: Winnie Ondara   |   Last updated: July 6, 2022

Laravel is an open-source PHP web framework. It is mainly used for building PHP-based web applications.

Laravel is suitable for both small-scale and enterprise-level application development. Its elegant syntax, advanced features, robust tools help simplify web application development. Laravel is highly scalable and has built-in support for distributed cache systems.

In this tutorial, we learn how to install Laravel 8 on Ubuntu 20.04.

Step 1: Install Apache web server

Let's first install a webserver to host the Laravel application. You can either use Apache or Nginx web server. Here I am using an Apache web server.

To install apache2, type:

$ sudo apt install apache2

Once installed, Apache should be running. If it's not, for whatever reason, start it:

$ sudo systemctl start apache2

Then enable it to start on boot time.

$ sudo systemctl enable apache2

To verify the status of Apache, execute:

$ sudo systemctl status apache2
Check the status of Apache webserver
Check the status of the Apache webserver

Step 2: Install PHP and additional PHP extensions

Laravel 8 requires PHP 7.3 or above. Thankfully, PHP 7.4 is available in Ubuntu repositories. So, install PHP and the following PHP extensions.

$ sudo apt install php libapache2-mod-php php-mbstring php-cli php-bcmath php-json php-xml php-zip php-pdo php-common php-tokenizer php-mysql

When the installation is complete, verify the PHP version.

$ php -v
Check PHP version

Step 3: Create Database for Laravel Application

Next up, we will create a database for the Laravel application.

But first, we need to install a database server. Laravel supported database systems are MariaDB, MySQL, SQLite, Postgres, or SQL Server.

We will go with the MariaDB database engine.

$ sudo apt install mariadb-server

Once the database server is installed, log into the MariaDB prompt:

$ sudo  mysql -u root -p

Once logged in create the database, database user, and grant all privileges to the database user.

CREATE USER 'laravel_user'@'localhost' IDENTIFIED BY 'secretpassword';
GRANT ALL ON laravel_db.* TO 'laravel_user'@'localhost';

Step 4: Install Composer

Composer is a dependency package manager for PHP. It provides a framework for managing libraries and dependencies and required dependencies. To use Laravel, first install composer.

To download Composer, invoke the command shown.

$ curl -sS | php

This downloads the composer.phar file.

Download Composer
Download Composer

Next, move the composer file to the /usr/local/bin path.

$ sudo mv composer.phar  /usr/local/bin/composer

Assign execute permission:

$ sudo chmod +x   /usr/local/bin/composer

Verify the Composer version installed:

$ composer --version
Check composer version
Check composer version

Composer version 2.1.3 is installed.

Step 5: Install Laravel 8 on Ubuntu

With Composer installed, the next course of action is to install Laravel.

Navigate to the webroot directory, type:

$ cd /var/www/html

Now, install Laravel using the composer command, type:

$ sudo composer create-project laravel/laravel laravelapp

The command creates a new directory called laravelapp and installs all the files and directories for Laravel.

Change the ownership of the Laravel directory to the webserver user and also the permissions:

sudo chown -R www-data:www-data /var/www/html/laravelapp
sudo chmod -R 775 /var/www/html/laravelapp/storage

Feel free to replace laravelapp with a preferred directory name.

Once the installation is done navigate to the installation directory and check the Laravel version.

$ cd laravelapp
$ php artisan
check Laravel version

Laravel Framework version 8.50.0 is installed.

Step 6: Configure Apache to serve Laravel site

Lastly, we need to set up the Apache webserver to host the Laravel site. For that to happen, we need to create a virtual host file.

$ sudo vim /etc/apache2/sites-available/laravel.conf

Next, past the content shown and replace the ServerName directive with the FQDN or public IP of the server ( Or private IP in case the server is on a LAN network ).

<VirtualHost *:80>
ServerAdmin [email protected]
DocumentRoot /var/www/html/laravelapp/public
<Directory /var/www/html/laravelapp>
AllowOverride All
ErrorLog ${APACHE_LOG_DIR}/error.log
CustomLog ${APACHE_LOG_DIR}/access.log combined

Save the changes and exit the file. Next, enable the Laravel site and Apache rewrite module using these two commands.

$ sudo a2ensite laravel.conf
$ sudo a2enmod rewrite

To apply the changes, restart Apache.

$ sudo systemctl restart apache2

Step 7: Access Laravel from a browser

Finally, to access Laravel visit your server's FQDN or IP address. The default Laravel webpage will be displayed.

Default Laravel page


In this tutorial, we learned how to install Laravel 8 on Ubuntu 20.04. You can proceed to develop a modern full stack PHP web application in cleaner and expressive syntax.

About The Author

Winnie Ondara

Winnie Ondara

Winnie is a Linux technical writer with over 3 years of experience with various Linux distributions and writing technical guides in Linux. She is passionate about FOSS technologies and always endeavor to learn new technologies. During my free time, I watch movies, listen to music, and catch up with tech news.



Please add comments below to provide the author your ideas, appreciation and feedback.

Leave a Reply

Leave a Comment