Community Solid Server - v5.1.0

Community Solid Server

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The Community Solid Server is open software that provides you with a Solid Pod and identity. This Pod acts as your own personal storage space so you can share data with people and Solid applications.

As an open and modular implementation of the Solid specifications, the Community Solid Server is a great companion:

  • πŸ§‘πŸ½ for people who want to try out having their own Pod

  • πŸ‘¨πŸΏβ€πŸ’» for developers who want to create and test Solid apps

  • πŸ‘©πŸ»β€πŸ”¬ for researchers who want to design new features for Solid

And, of course, for many others who like to experience Solid.

You can install the software locally or on your server and get started with Solid immediately.

⚑ Running the server

To run the server, you will need Node.js. We support versions 14.2 and up.

If you do not use Node.js, you can run a Docker version instead.

πŸ’» Installing and running locally

After installing Node.js, install the latest server version from the npm package repository:

npm install -g @solid/community-server

To run the server with in-memory storage, use:

community-solid-server # add parameters if needed

To run the server with your current folder as storage, use:

community-solid-server -c @css:config/file.json

πŸ“ƒ Installing and running from source

If you rather prefer to run the latest source code version, or if you want to try a specific branch of the code, you can use:

git clone
cd CommunitySolidServer
npm ci
npm start -- # add parameters if needed

πŸ“¦ Running via Docker

Docker allows you to run the server without having Node.js installed. Images are built on each tagged version and hosted on Docker Hub.

# Clone the repo to get access to the configs
git clone
cd CommunitySolidServer
# Run the image, serving your `~/Solid` directory on `http://localhost:3000`
docker run --rm -v ~/Solid:/data -p 3000:3000 -it solidproject/community-server:latest
# Or use one of the built-in configurations
docker run --rm -p 3000:3000 -it solidproject/community-server -c config/default.json
# Or use your own configuration mapped to the right directory
docker run --rm -v ~/solid-config:/config -p 3000:3000 -it solidproject/community-server -c /config/my-config.json
# Or use environment variables to configure your css instance
docker run --rm -v ~/Solid:/data -p 3000:3000 -it -e CSS_CONFIG=config/file-no-setup.json -e CSS_LOGGING_LEVEL=debug solidproject/community-server

πŸ—ƒοΈ Helm Chart

The official Helm Chart for Kubernetes deployment is maintained at CommunitySolidServer/css-helm-chart and published on ArtifactHUB. There you will find complete installation instructions.

# Summary
helm repo add community-solid-server
helm install my-css community-solid-server/community-solid-server

πŸ”§Β Configuring the server

The Community Solid Server is designed to be flexible such that people can easily run different configurations. This is useful for customizing the server with plugins, testing applications in different setups, or developing new parts for the server without needing to change its base code.

⏱ Parameters

An easy way to customize the server is by passing parameters to the server command. These parameters give you direct access to some commonly used settings:

parameter name default value description
--port, -p 3000 The TCP port on which the server should listen.
--baseUrl, -b http://localhost:$PORT/ The base URL used internally to generate URLs. Change this if your server does not run on http://localhost:$PORT/.
--socket The Unix Domain Socket on which the server should listen. --baseUrl must be set if this option is provided
--loggingLevel, -l info The detail level of logging; useful for debugging problems. Use debug for full information.
--config, -c @css:config/default.json The configuration(s) for the server. The default only stores data in memory; to persist to your filesystem, use @css:config/file.json
--rootFilePath, -f ./ Root folder where the server stores data, when using a file-based configuration.
--sparqlEndpoint, -s URL of the SPARQL endpoint, when using a quadstore-based configuration.
--showStackTrace, -t false Enables detailed logging on error output.
--podConfigJson ./pod-config.json Path to the file that keeps track of dynamic Pod configurations. Only relevant when using @css:config/dynamic.json.
--seededPodConfigJson Path to the file that keeps track of seeded Pod configurations.
--mainModulePath, -m Path from where Components.js will start its lookup when initializing configurations.
--workers, -w 1 Run in multithreaded mode using workers. Special values are -1 (scale to num_cores-1), 0 (scale to num_cores) and 1 (singlethreaded).

πŸ”€ Multithreading

The Community Solid Server can be started in multithreaded mode with any config. The config must only contain components that are threadsafe though. If a non-threadsafe component is used in multithreaded mode, the server will describe with an error which class is the culprit.

# Running multithreaded with autoscaling to number of logical cores minus 1
npm start -- -c config/file.json -w -1

πŸ–₯️ Environment variables

Parameters can also be passed through environment variables.

They are prefixed with CSS_ and converted from camelCase to CAMEL_CASE

eg. --showStackTrace => CSS_SHOW_STACK_TRACE

Note: command-line arguments will always override environment variables!

🧢 Custom configurations

More substantial changes to server behavior can be achieved by writing new configuration files in JSON-LD. The Community Solid Server uses Components.js to specify how modules and components need to be wired together at runtime.

Examples and guidance on configurations are available in the config folder, and the configurations tutorial. There is also a configuration generator.

Recipes for configuring the server can be found at CommunitySolidServer/recipes.

πŸ‘©πŸ½β€πŸ’» Developing server code

The server allows writing and plugging in custom modules without altering its base source code.

The πŸ“—Β API documentation and the πŸ““Β user documentation can help you find your way. There is also a repository of πŸ“šΒ comprehensive tutorials

πŸ“œ License

The Solid Community Server code is copyrighted by Inrupt Inc. and imec and available under the MITΒ License.

🎀 Feedback and questions

Don't hesitate to start a discussion or report a bug.

Learn more about Solid at