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Getting started

Preparing for running the code

Notice: There are specialised instructions for docker if you prefer running code this way!

  1. Clone the repository with git clone hedgedoc-server (cloning is the preferred way, but you can also download and unzip a release)

  2. Enter the directory and run bin/setup, which will install npm dependencies and create configs. The setup script is written in Bash, you would need bash as a prerequisite.

  3. Setup the config file or set up environment variables.

Running the Code

Now that everything is in place, we can start HedgeDoc:

  1. yarn run build will build the frontend bundle. It uses webpack to do that.
  2. Run the server with node app.js

Running the Code with Auto-Reload

The commands above are fine for production, but you're a developer and surely you want to change things. You would need to restart both commands whenever you change something. Luckily, you can run these commands that will automatically rebuild the frontend or restart the server if necessary.

The commands will stay active in your terminal, so you will need multiple tabs to run both at the same time.

  1. Use yarn run dev if you want webpack to continuously rebuild the frontend code.

  2. To auto-reload the server, the easiest method is to install nodemon and run nodemon --watch app.js --watch lib --watch locales app.js.


The repository contains two parts: a server (backend) and a client (frontend). most of the server code is in /lib and most of the client code is in public.

├── docs/           --- documentation
├── lib/            --- server code
├── test/           --- test suite
└── public/         --- client code
    ├── css/        --- css styles
    ├── docs/       --- default documents
    ├── js/         --- js scripts
    ├── vendor/     --- vendor includes
    └── views/      --- view templates