How to Install and Configure Redis Server on Ubuntu 16.04

Published: 28 August, 2018

Install the Build and Test Dependencies

$ sudo apt-get update
$ sudo apt-get install build-essential tcl

Next, we can begin to build Redis.

Download and Extract the Source Code

Since we won't need to keep the source code that we'll compile long term (we can always re-download it), we will build in the /tmp directory. Let's move there now: $ cd /tmp Now, download the latest stable version of Redis. This is always available at a stable download URL: $ curl -O Unpack the tarball by typing: $ tar xzvf redis-stable.tar.gz Move into the Redis source directory structure that was just extracted: $ cd redis-stable Build and Install Redis Now, we can compile the Redis binaries by typing: $ make After the binaries are compiled, run the test suite to make sure everything was built correctly. You can do this by typing: $ make test This will typically take a few minutes to run. Once it is complete, you can install the binaries onto the system by typing: sudo make install Configure Redis Now that Redis is installed, we can begin to configure it. To start off, we need to create a configuration directory. We will use the conventional /etc/redis directory, which can be created by typing: sudo mkdir /etc/redis Now, copy over the sample Redis configuration file included in the Redis source archive: sudo cp /tmp/redis-stable/redis.conf /etc/redis Next, we can open the file to adjust a few items in the configuration:

$ sudo nano /etc/redis/redis.conf

In the file, find the supervised directive. Currently, this is set to no. Since we are running an operating system that uses the systemd init system, we can change this to systemd:

# If you run Redis from upstart or systemd, Redis can interact with your
# supervision tree. Options:
#   supervised no      - no supervision interaction
#   supervised upstart - signal upstart by putting Redis into SIGSTOP mode
#   supervised systemd - signal systemd by writing READY=1 to $NOTIFY_SOCKET
#   supervised auto    - detect upstart or systemd method based on
#                        UPSTART_JOB or NOTIFY_SOCKET environment variables
# Note: these supervision methods only signal "process is ready."
#       They do not enable continuous liveness pings back to your supervisor.
supervised systemd

Next, find the dir directory. This option specifies the directory that Redis will use to dump persistent data. We need to pick a location that Redis will have write permission and that isn't viewable by normal users. We will use the /var/lib/redis directory for this, which we will create in a moment:

Create a Redis systemd Unit File

Next, we can create a systemd unit file so that the init system can manage the Redis process. Create and open the /etc/systemd/system/redis.service file to get started:

sudo nano /etc/systemd/system/redis.service

Inside, we can begin the [Unit] section by adding a description and defining a requirement that networking be available before starting this service: In the [Service] section, we need to specify the service's behavior. For security purposes, we should not run our service as root. We should use a dedicated user and group, which we will call redis for simplicity. We will create these momentarily. To start the service, we just need to call the redis-server binary, pointed at our configuration. To stop it, we can use the Redis shutdown command, which can be executed with the redis-cli binary. Also, since we want Redis to recover from failures when possible, we will set the Restart directive to "always":

Description=Redis In-Memory Data Store

[Service] User=redis Group=redis ExecStart=/usr/local/bin/redis-server /etc/redis/redis.conf ExecStop=/usr/local/bin/redis-cli shutdown Restart=always

Finally, in the [Install] section, we can define the systemd target that the service should attach to if enabled (configured to start at boot):

Description=Redis In-Memory Data Store

[Service] User=redis Group=redis ExecStart=/usr/local/bin/redis-server /etc/redis/redis.conf ExecStop=/usr/local/bin/redis-cli shutdown Restart=always


Save and close the file when you are finished.

Create the Redis User, Group and Directories

Now, we just have to create the user, group, and directory that we referenced in the previous two files. Begin by creating the redis user and group. This can be done in a single command by typing:

$ sudo adduser --system --group --no-create-home redis

Now, we can create the /var/lib/redis directory by typing:

$ sudo mkdir /var/lib/redis

We should give the redis user and group ownership over this directory:

$ sudo chown redis:redis /var/lib/redis

Adjust the permissions so that regular users cannot access this location:

$ sudo chmod 770 /var/lib/redis

Start and Test Redis

Now, we are ready to start the Redis server.

Start the Redis Service

Start up the systemd service by typing:

sudo systemctl start redis

Check that the service had no errors by running:

$ sudo systemctl status redis

You should see something that looks like this:

Test the Redis Instance Functionality

To test that your service is functioning correctly, connect to the Redis server with the command-line client:

$ redis-cli

In the prompt that follows, test connectivity by typing:> ping

You should see:


Enable Redis as a Startup Service

If all of your tests worked, and you would like to start Redis automatically when your server boots, you can enable the systemd service. To do so, type:

$ sudo systemctl enable redis



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