How to Install PrestaShop on an Ubuntu 18.04 VPS or Dedicated Server

PrestaShop is free open-source shopping cart software that you can use to run an e-commerce website. With its beautiful themes and wide support from developers, PrestaShop offers a great platform for selling products on the internet.

The mission of PrestaShop is to help people build successful online stores. It is estimated that more than a million users rely on this platform as their only e-commerce software.

Installing this software is quite easy if you are on a shared hosting because you can use automatic script installers. However, if you are on a VPS plan, the installation method is manual but straightforward.

In this guide, we will show you to install PrestaShop on your Ubuntu 18.04 server.


  • A VPS plan running Ubuntu 18.04 server
  • A non-root user with sudo privileges

Reliability, up-time and security are always important, but even more so when running an e-commerce business. With HostAdvice you can find and compare the best VPS hosting services and top web hosting providers for small business, and read expert and user reviews on each provider.

Step 1: Update your system

Before you begin your installation, make sure that your system is up to date by running the command below:

$ sudo apt-get update && sudo apt-get upgrade

Step 2: Install Apache

Next, you need to install Apache web server by typing the following.

$ sudo apt-get install apache2 libapache2-mod-php

Step 3: Allow ‘.htaccess’ files to override Apache configuration settings

By default, apache installs a virtual host on an Ubuntu 18.04 server. We need to adjust the settings so that the virtual host configuration file can allow ‘.htaccess’ files to work. We will do this using a nano text editor by typing the command below:

$ sudo nano /etc/apache2/sites-available/000-default.conf

Then, paste the text below just before the </VirtualHost> closing tag

<Directory /var/www/html >
    AllowOverride All

The last part for the configuration file should look like the image below:

Next, we need to enable the mod_rewrite Apache module for PrestaShop to work by typing:

$ sudo a2enmod rewrite

Then, restart apache

$ sudo systemctl restart apache2

Step 4: Install PHP

PrestaShop is written in PHP programming language. Therefore we need to install it on our Ubuntu 18.04 server by typing the following command:

$ sudo apt install php libapache2-mod-php

Then, we need to install some PHP extensions as shown below:

$ sudo apt-get install php-cli php-common php-mbstring php-gd php-intl php-xml php-mysql php-zip php-curl php-xmlrpc

Restart Apache one more time for PHP to work:

$ sudo systemctl restart apache2

Step 5: Install MariaDB

PrestaShop stores information on a MariaDB or MySQL database. To install, this relational database management system, type the command below:

$ sudo apt-get install mariadb-server

Next, we need to secure our MariaDB installation by running the command below:

$ sudo mysql_secure_installation

You will be asked a series of questions. Just choose the below options to proceed.

  • Set root password? [Y/n] Y
  • New password: Enter your password here
  • Re-enter new password: repeat your password
  • Remove anonymous users? [Y/n] Y
  • Disallow root login remotely? [Y/n] Y
  • Remove test database and access to it? [Y/n] Y
  • Reload privilege tables now? [Y/n] Y

Create a MariaDB database and user

Once the MariaDB installation is complete, we need to create a database to store PrestaShop information and a username for authentication purposes.

So, log in to your MySQL server instance by typing the command below;

$ sudo mysql -u root -p

You will be prompted to enter your MariaDB root password that you created above when securing the installation. Then press Enter to proceed.

To create a database and a user, we need to type the below SQL command:

GRANT ALL ON prestashop.* TO 'ps_user'@'localhost';

Remember to replace ‘PASSWORD’ with a strong value.

Step 4: Download the latest PrestaShop software

We now have the right software applications to run PrestaShop. Next, download the latest PrestaShop software on the /var/www/html directory using the commands below:

$ cd /var/www/html
$ sudo wget

Next, we unzip the ‘’ file by typing:

$ sudo apt-get install unzip
$ sudo unzip

Then we need to delete the default ‘index.html’ file created when Apache was first installed by typing the command below:

$ sudo rm /var/www/html/index.html

Step 5: Assign the right directory ownership

We can then type the commands below to enable PrestaShop to access and modify the right files:

$ sudo chown www-data: /var/www/html/
$ sudo chmod -R 755 /var/www/html/

Step 6: Finalize the installation

You can now finalize your PrestaShop website installation by typing the public IP address associated with your Ubuntu 18.04 server on a browser. You will get a screen similar to the one below:


Click ‘Next’ to proceed on the bottom right side of the screen.

Accept the terms on the next screen and click ‘Next’:

The installation script will check whether your environment is compatible with PrestaShop as shown below. Then, click ‘Next‘ to proceed.

Next, enter your shop details as shown below and click ‘Next’:

Finally, enter the database details that you created above on the next screen and click next

If the details are correct and there are no errors your installation will be finished and you can now view or log on the admin section of your PrestaShop store.

Store Front


That’s all when it comes to installing PrestaShop on your Ubuntu 18.04 VPS server. Although we have used an IP address for the installation, you can run the setup using a domain name. Also, since you are dealing with sensitive data, you should consider installing an SSL certificate (.e.g. by configuring one from Let’s Encrypt website). I hope you enjoyed the guide.


Check out the top 3 Ecommerce hosting services:

$2.49 /mo
Starting price
Visit HostArmada
Rating based on expert review
  • User Friendly
  • Support
  • Features
  • Reliability
  • Pricing
$4.00 /mo
Starting price
Visit Kamatera
Rating based on expert review
  • User Friendly
  • Support
  • Features
  • Reliability
  • Pricing
$2.00 /mo
Starting price
Visit Hostens
Rating based on expert review
  • User Friendly
  • Support
  • Features
  • Reliability
  • Pricing

How To Install and Configure Zen Cart on an Ubuntu 18.04 VPS or Dedicated Server

How to Install Zen Cart on an Ubuntu 18.04 VPS or Dedicated Server
3 min read
Mark Armistead
Mark Armistead

How to Install OpenCart on an Ubuntu 18.04 Server or VPS with Apache, MariaDB and PHP 7

In this how-to, you'll learn how to install OpenCart, an open source shopping ca
3 min read
Angela Olaru
Angela Olaru
Senior Writer & Hosting Expert

How to Install a Self-Signed SSL Certificate on Your Ubuntu 18.04 VPS or Dedicated Server

This how-to article will teach you how to create a self-signed SSL certificate o
3 min read
Michael Levanduski
Michael Levanduski
Expert Hosting Writer & Tester

How to Install WordPress on Your Ubuntu 22.04 VPS or Dedicated Server

This tutorial will show you how to install WordPress on your Ubuntu 22.04 virtua
3 min read
Idan Cohen
Idan Cohen
Marketing Expert provides professional web hosting reviews fully independent of any other entity. Our reviews are unbiased, honest, and apply the same evaluation standards to all those reviewed. While monetary compensation is received from a few of the companies listed on this site, compensation of services and products have no influence on the direction or conclusions of our reviews. Nor does the compensation influence our rankings for certain host companies. This compensation covers account purchasing costs, testing costs and royalties paid to reviewers.