How to create a PHP Laravel application with our quickstart repository

The PHP Laravel quickstart repository is a template that gives you the fastest possible way of launching a new Laravel project on Divio.

It’s based on Laravel’s own example project. The only additions are some glue code to handle configuration using environment variables, plus some additional files to take care of the Docker set-up.

Clone the repository


git clone

You’ll find a directory named divio containing some helper modules scripts and modules, that are used (for example) to read the environment variables we provide to configure database and media storage.

Run the project locally

This section assumes that you have Docker and the Divio CLI installed. You also need an account on Divio, and your account needs your SSH public key. See How to set up the Divio local development environment if required.

Build the Docker image


docker-compose build

Run database migrations

First, open a bash shell in a local container:

docker-compose run web bash

Then, in the shell run migrations using Artisan:

php artisan migrate

MySQL errors

An error can occur if the the MySQL service has failed to start up in time:


SQLSTATE[HY000] [2002] Connection refused [...]

In this case, wait a few moments and run the command again.

Then exit the shell.

Launch the local server

docker-compose up

This starts up the container with the default command in the docker-compose.yml file, which is:

bash -c "chmod a+x /app/divio/ && php /app/divio/run-env.php /app/divio/"

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If you comment out that line in docker-compose.yml, it will start up with the command specified in the Dockerfile instead.

You now have a working, running project ready for further development. All the commands you might normally execute in development need to be run inside the Docker container - prefix them with docker-compose run web.

Mapping /app to the local host filesystem

The host/container volume mapping directive in the docker-compose.yml file is commented out by default:

# - ".:/app:rw"

If you uncomment this entry, the entire /app directory inside the container will be overridden by the project files from the host when using Docker Compose. This can be useful for development.

However you will now need to re-run any commands in the Dockerfile that change items within the /app directory as part of the build process, otherwise the file changes made by Dockerfile operations in the image will not be reflected in the container.

For convenience, all these commands are included in the file. If you do need to map /app to the host filesystem, run:

docker-compose run web sh

after any docker-compose build operations.

Launching the local server with Nginx

The Dockerfile launches the server with Nginx:

CMD php /app/divio/run-env.php "/usr/bin/dumb-init nginx && php-fpm -R"

However when you start a local instance with docker-compose up, it uses the command in docker-compose.yml instead:

command: bash -c "chmod a+x /app/divio/ && php /app/divio/run-env.php /app/divio/"

Comment this out to use Nginx locally with Docker Compose.


Your application is ready for deployment on our cloud platform. The basic steps are:

  • create a project on the Divio Control Panel, with any required services

  • push your code/connect your Git repository

  • deploy one or more cloud environments

These steps are covered in more detail in Deploy your application to Divio.