Setting Up Ghost - Part 1

My first run-through of setting up Ghost went off largely without a hitch. I used Digital Ocean's 1-click Ghost install. Which made the whole set up seem fairly breezy. Here are the steps I took that led me into the weeds.

  1. Create a Ghost Droplet. - This was really simple! I selected my droplet image from Digital Ocean's selection of 1-Click Apps and voila! I now had a working instance of Ghost v. 0.7.9 running on Ubuntu v. 14.04.

  2. Implement Site Theme. - While the normal flow of the installation is to set up your domain name, I wasn't ready to switch my current website to Ghost until I had the new one all set up and ready to push live. So I found a great Ghost theme called Stupendous and started tinkering. This was a pretty wild ride for me since I am new to Ember, so I fumbled through changing the theme a bit while I was learning. Here is where I had my first takeaway -- don't forget to restart Ghost after making changes to theme files.

  3. Import Wordpress Posts. - I used the Ghost Plugin for Wordpress to export all my posts into a JSON file. Then imported my posts (and pages) into Ghost via the Labs admin section.

  4. Set Up Domain Name on the Server. - First, change your nginx config (/etc/nginx/sites-available/ghost) to match your domain. Next, edit your Ghost config file (/var/www/ghost/config.js) so that the settings for production mode match your domain hostname. Don't forget to use http!

    Here's where I found myself in the weeds. Somewhere along the way of changing all the necessary settings in my Ghost and nginx config files, I really messed up. I got myself into a real pickle where no matter what I did, I had a 502 Bad Gateway error message when trying to resolve my website. Which I didn't figure out until I...

  5. Set Up Domain Name on Digital Ocean & Your Registrar. - I always wince when I change any of my DNS settings and it was a well earned wince because after I changed my nameservers on my registrar and then connected my droplet to a domain within Digital Ocean's Networking settings, I anxiously awaited the cache to clear and find my worst nightmare. My site was down.

    After about two hours of trying to track down what the error in my log meant, Unable to find node index, I finally decided to scrap the droplet all together and start fresh.

Second chances are plentiful when your willing to let yourself fail. More on my second attempt at setting up Ghost in Part 2 of this series.