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Migrate passbolt CE from install scripts to CentOS 7 package

A CentOS package has been created to increase the ease of installing and upgrading passbolt.


For this tutorial, you will need:

  • A minimal CentOS 7 server.
  • Passbolt installed with the CentOS install script.

1. Take down your site

It is generally a good idea to stop running the site prior to the upgrade. This is to avoid having side effects such as active users corrupting the data in the middle of an upgrade.

sudo systemctl stop nginx

2. Backup your instance

First things first, as this is a sensitive operation a backup of the instance must be performed to prevent any data loss. You can follow our backup process.

3. Upgrade your system

Passbolt requires PHP 7.3 and supports PHP 7.4.

A full system upgrade to CentOS 7 is necessary before installing the passbolt CentOS package.

sudo yum upgrade

4. Install the package

1. Install the server components

1.1. Package repository setup

For easier installation and update tasks Passbolt provides a package repository that you need to setup before you download Passbolt CE and install it.

These steps assume you have already installed sudo and added your user to the sudo group.

Step 1. Configure Extra Packages for Enterprise Linux (EPEL) repository

sudo yum install epel-release

While installing packages from this repository, you will be asked to accept GPG key of this repository. You nust verify if the displayed fingerprint is correct on this reference page.

Step 2. Configure Remi’s RPM repository

As CentOS 7 don’t provide the mandatory php-pecl-gnupg package for Passbolt, we rely on Remi’s RPM repository for the PHP packages.

Install Remi repository configuration package.

sudo yum install

During the next package installations, if you are prompted for Remi GPG key import, you must check if the displayed fingerprint matches with the one on the bottom of this reference page.

Install the yum-utils package:

sudo yum install yum-utils

Step 3. Enable the module stream for PHP 7.4:

sudo yum-config-manager --disable 'remi-php*'
sudo yum-config-manager --enable   remi-php74

Step 4. Let’s Encrypt

Install certbot if you plan to manage your SSL certificates with Let’s Encrypt:

sudo yum install certbot python3-certbot-nginx

Step 5. Setup MariaDB 10.3 repository

CentOS 7 comes with an outated MariaDB 5.x version and performance issues has been reported by using it. That’s why you should consider to upgrade MariaDB to version 10.3.

Add MariaDB 10.3 repository:

cat << EOF | sudo tee /etc/yum.repos.d/mariadb.repo
name = MariaDB
baseurl =

Upgrade MariaDB server from 5.5.xx to 10.3 version:

sudo yum install MariaDB-server MariaDB-client

At this step, MariaDB 5.5 has been replaced with MariaDB 10.3. You can now restart the MariaDB service:

sudo systemctl restart mariadb.service

Run this command to upgrade MariaDB internal database schemas:

sudo su -s /bin/bash -c "mysql_upgrade -p" mysql

You will be prompted with root mysql password and an output like the one below will be displayed:

Phase 1/7: Checking and upgrading mysql database
Processing databases
mysql.columns_priv OK
mysql.db OK
mysql.event OK
(etc etc...)

At this step, MariaDB has been upgraded.

Step 6. Add passbolt repository:

cat << EOF | sudo tee /etc/yum.repos.d/passbolt.repo
name=Passbolt Server

Install passbolt package

Install the main passbolt server component:

sudo yum install passbolt-ce-server

During the installation, you will be asked to accept the Passbolt repository GPG key. You must ensure the fingerprint is exactly the same as the one below:

Importing GPG key 0xC155581D:
 Userid     : "Passbolt SA package signing key <[email protected]>"
 Fingerprint: 3D1A 0346 C8E1 802F 774A EF21 DE8B 853F C155 581D
 From       :

5. Copy existing configuration to the new location

5.1. Copy the server keys

Copy the GPG server keys as following:

sudo cp -a /var/www/passbolt/config/gpg/serverkey.asc /etc/passbolt/gpg/
sudo cp -a /var/www/passbolt/config/gpg/serverkey_private.asc /etc/passbolt/gpg/
sudo chown -R root:nginx /etc/passbolt/gpg
sudo chmod g-w /etc/passbolt/gpg

5.2. Copy the passbolt configuration

Copy passbolt configuration as following:

sudo cp /var/www/passbolt/config/passbolt.php /etc/passbolt/passbolt.php
sudo chown root:nginx /etc/passbolt/passbolt.php
sudo chmod g-w /etc/passbolt/passbolt.php

If you are running mysql 8, please change the quoteIdentifiers setting of the passbolt.php as follow:

'quoteIdentifiers' => true

6. Nginx

Now you can remove all the old nginx configuration files from /etc/nginx/conf.d/

sudo rm /etc/nginx/conf.d/passbolt.conf
sudo rm /etc/nginx/conf.d/passbolt_ssl.conf

Then you can reconfigure the CentOS package using:

sudo /usr/local/bin/passbolt-configure

Answer the following way:

  • No to mariadb configuration
  • Yes to nginx configuration

You can then select the SSL method that suits best your needs.

7. Run the database migrations

Now it is time to run the migrations to upgrade the database schemas:

sudo -H -u nginx bash -c "/usr/share/php/passbolt/bin/cake passbolt migrate"

8. Cleanup

After you have checked you can access your new setup with the CentOS package make a backup of /var/www/passbolt and then you can delete it:

sudo rm -rf /var/www/passbolt

You may also want to check for the old CRON job that may need to be removed:

sudo crontab -u nginx -e

9. Take your site back up

Finally take passbolt back up:

sudo systemctl start nginx
sudo systemctl restart php-fpm

Last updated

This article was last updated on November 26th, 2021.

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