Configuration options


The easiest way to get started with Plausible is with our official managed service in the Cloud. It takes 2 minutes to start counting your stats with a worldwide CDN, high availability, backups, security and maintenance all done for you by us. Our managed hosting can save a substantial amount of developer time and resources. For most sites this ends up being the best value option and the revenue goes to funding the maintenance and further development of Plausible. So you’ll be supporting open source software and getting a great service! The section below is for self-hosting our analytics on your server and managing your infrastructure.

When running a Plausible release, the following configuration parameters can be supplied as environment variables.

Default User Generation#

A default user can be generated using the db init-admin command. In the default docker-compose setup, this command is run automatically when you boot the server.

It is highly recommended that you configure these parameters.

ADMIN_USER_NAMEautogeneratedAdmin user's name
ADMIN_USER_EMAILautogeneratedThe default ("admin") user email
ADMIN_USER_PWDautogeneratedThe default ("admin") user password.


Following are the variables that can be used to configure the availability of the server.

BASE_URL--The hosting url of the server, used for URL generation. In production systems, this should be your ingress host.
PORT8000The port on which the server is available.
SECRET_KEY_BASE--An internal secret key used by Phoenix Framework. Follow the instructions to generate one.
DISABLE_AUTHfalseDisables authentication completely, no registration, login will be shown.
DISABLE_REGISTRATIONfalseDisables registration of new users, keep your admin credentials handy ;)


Plausible uses PostgreSQL for storing user data and ClickhouseDB for analytics data. Use the following variables to configure it.

DATABASE_URLpostgres://localhost:5432/plausible_devThe database URL as dictated here, i.e. for external db server postgres://
DATABASE_SOCKET_DIR--Directory where a UNIX socket of postgresql is available. Mutually exclusive with DATABASE_URL, can only be used with DATABASE_NAME
DATABASE_NAME--Name of the database in PostgreSQL to use. Only applicable in conjunction with DATABASE_SOCKET_DIR
CLICKHOUSE_DATABASE_URLhttp://localhost:8123/plausible_devConnection string for Clickhouse in the same format, i.e. for docker-compose setup http://plausible_events_db:8123/plausible_events_db
CLICKHOUSE_FLUSH_INTERVAL_MS5000Interval (in milliseconds) between flushing events and sessions data to Clickhouse. Consult Clickhouse docs before changing it.
CLICKHOUSE_MAX_BUFFER_SIZE10000Maximum size of the buffer of events or sessions. Consult Clickhouse docs before changing it.

Mailer/SMTP Setup#

Plausible uses a SMTP server to send transactional emails e.g. account activation, password reset, weekly reports, etc.

MAILER_EMAILhello@plausible.localThe email id to use for as from address of all communications from Plausible.
SMTP_HOST_ADDRlocalhostThe host address of your smtp server.
SMTP_HOST_PORT25The port of your smtp server.
SMTP_USER_NAME--The username/email in case SMTP auth is enabled.
SMTP_USER_PWD--The password in case SMTP auth is enabled.
SMTP_HOST_SSL_ENABLEDfalseIf SSL is enabled for SMTP connection
SMTP_RETRIES2Number of retries to make until mailer gives up.

Alternatively, you can use Postmark to send transactional emails. In this case, use the following parameters:

MAILER_ADAPTERBamboo.SMTPAdapterInstead of the default, replace this with Bamboo.PostmarkAdapter
POSTMARK_API_KEY--Enter your API key.

IP Geolocation#

Plausible uses the country database created by dbip for enriching analytics data with visitor countries. The database is shipped with Plausible and country data collection happens automatically.

Optionally, you can provide different database. For example, you can use MaxMind services. You need to create an account and download their GeoLite2 Country database.

Once you have the database, mount it on the Plausible docker image and configure the path of the database file:

GEOLITE2_COUNTRY_DB-- (internal database)Path to your IP geolocation database in MaxMind's format

To make this as easy as possible you can use the maxmindinc/geoipupdate Docker image. You just need to add your account details, mount the database in the plausible container and let the image update the database automatically. To run the complete setup including geoip see docker-compose-geoip.yml.

Google Search Integration#

To enable the Google Search Console integration, as is described elsewhere in the docs, you first need to authorize your self-hosted installation with a Google Account. Complete the following three tasks to do so.

Task One: Create an OAuth Client#

  1. Login to Google API Console with your Google Account. We will need to obtain OAuth 2.0 credentials such as a Client ID and Client Secret key that are known to both Google and your installation.
  2. Once on the API Console, create a new project for the Plausible integration.


  1. Make sure your new Project is open, then go to the "Credentials" screen and get your Client ID and Client Secret key. If you can't see the "Credentials" menu item, open the navigation ("hamburger") menu in the top left corner and select "APIs & Services". "Credentials" is a menu item below that.


  1. Use the "+ CREATE CREDENTIALS" button near the top of the screen to create a new "OAuth client ID". Set the "Application type" to "Web application" and give it a name. To help with naming, note that your self-hosted Plausible site will be the "client" that is accessing an API exposed by your Google account.

  2. Use the "+ ADD URI" button to set an "Authorized redirect URI" to your Plausible installation's public URL followed by /auth/google/callback. Eg. Then click "CREATE".


  1. Copy the Client ID and Client Secret key from your project in Google API Console into these config values (that is, add them to plausible-conf.env):
GOOGLE_CLIENT_ID--The Client ID from the Google API Console for your Plausible Analytics project
GOOGLE_CLIENT_SECRET--The Client Secret from the Google API Console for your Plausible Analytics project
  1. Force the new config values to take effect by restarting your Plausible site (eg. with the command docker-compose restart).

Task Two: Configure the OAuth Consent Screen#

  1. Follow the prompts or select "OAuth consent screen" from the left side menu to configure the consent screen. If you can't see the "OAuth consent screen" menu item, open the navigation ("hamburger") menu in the top left corner and select "APIs & Services". "OAuth consent screen" is a menu item below that.

  2. Enter an "App name" and a "User support email". Again, to help with naming, remember that the "app" is your self-hosted Plausible site which will be requesting access to the Search Console API using your Google Account, so you are probably the only user.

  3. Apart from the mandatory "Developer contact information" fields, the only other necessary setting is the "Authorized domains" which must include the domain used for the earlier "Authorized Redirect URIs" setting. That is, add the domain (eg. of your Plausible installation's public URL. All subdomains will be authorized automatically.

  4. Click "SAVE AND CONTINUE". No "Scopes" are required, so click "SAVE AND CONTINUE" again.

  5. The "app" will be created with status set to "Testing". To avoid having to verify it with Google, you must enter the email address of your Google Account as a "Test user". Add the email address and then click "SAVE AND CONTNUE" and the OAuth Consent Screen configuration is complete.

Task Three: Enable Google Search Console API#

Although you can now grant your Plausible installation access to your Google account, you still will not be able to choose a property from the Search Console as described in Google Search Console Integration, until you enable the "Google Search Console API" on your Google API project.

  1. Click on "Enable APIs and Services."


  1. Search for "Google Search Console API" in the search bar of the API Library.


  1. Click on "Google Search Console API" and the button to enable.



  1. Finally, return to APIs & Services, and select "Domain verification". If you can't see the "Domain verification" menu item, open the navigation ("hamburger") menu in the top left corner and select "APIs & Services". "Domain verification" is a menu item below that.

  2. Add the same domain you used in Step 2 above. You will prompted to go to Google Search Console to finish configuration, which coincidentally is exactly where you need to be to start the Google Search Console Integration instructions.

Twitter Integration#

To automatically display tweets that link to your sites, you need a Twitter API key. You need to first apply for an API key on Twitter's Developer site. It may take a while for them to get back to you.

When the app is created, note down your API key and API key secret. Then, in the Developer Portal, select your project from the sidebar and go to the "Keys and tokens tab". Here you can generate an "Access Token & Secret" which you will also need.

TWITTER_CONSUMER_KEY--The API key from the Twitter Developer Portal
TWITTER_CONSUMER_SECRET--The API key secret from the Twitter Developer Portal
TWITTER_ACCESS_TOKEN--The access token you generated in the steps above
TWITTER_ACCESS_TOKEN_SECRET--The access token secret you generated in the steps above

Once you've added these environment variables and restarted Plausible, you should see the relevant tweets the next day -- they are only fetched once every 24 hours. For more information on the Twitter integration, see Twitter referrals.


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