Set up your project locally

In this section we will set up locally the cloud project you created earlier.

Obtain the project’s slug (its unique ID) from the Dashboard:

'Project slug'

Alternatively you can use the divio command to list your cloud project, which will show their slugs:

divio project list

Build the project locally

Run the divio project setup command (for example if your project slug is tutorial-project):

divio project setup tutorial-project

The Divio CLI will execute a number of steps - this make take a few minutes, depending on how much needs to be downloaded and processed. The Divio CLI tool will build your project locally (see The project deployment process for a more detailed description of what’s happening here):

Creating workspace

cloning project repository
downloading remote docker images
building local docker images
creating new database container
syncing and migrating database
Your workspace is setup and ready to start.

cd into the newly-created project directory, where you will find your project code.

Start the local project

Start the project by running docker-compose up in the terminal:

➜  docker-compose up
Starting tutorial-project_db_1
Performing system checks...

System check identified no issues (0 silenced).
May 19, 2020 - 03:29:06
Django version 2.2.12, using settings 'settings'
Starting development server at
Quit the server with CONTROL-C.

Open the project in your web browser by visiting http://localhost:8000.

(You may notice above that Django claims to be running on port 80, not port 8000. It is - but that’s only inside the container. The docker-compose.yml configuration file is responsible for this port-mapping.)


If you didn’t previously log in to the cloud site before setting up the project locally, you’ll need to add a user to the database before you can log in. The Divio SSO system allows you to do this from the Django login page with the Add user option.

Or, you could run:

docker-compose run web createsuperuser

See below for more on the use of docker-compose.

If you open a new terminal window and run:

docker ps

it will show you the Docker processes that are running - you will see something like (note that the details will differ):

➜ docker ps
CONTAINER ID  IMAGE                COMMAND                 CREATED         STATUS        PORTS                 NAME
d6007edbaf32  tutorialproject_web  "/tini -g -- pytho..."  17 minutes ago  Up 8 seconds>80/tcp  tutorialproject_web_
27ff3e661027  postgres:9.6         "docker-entrypoint..."  17 minutes ago  Up 8 seconds  5432/tcp              tutorialproject_db_

The first container is an instance of the image that you built, just like the one in the cloud deployment. The second is the database, running in its own Docker container.

Once you have successfully logged into the local site, stop the project, using CONTROL-C.

Useful commands

So far, we have used the divio, docker-compose and docker commands. It’s good to have a basic familiarity with them and what they do. As you proceed through this tutorial, you may encounter the occasional issue. These commands will help you when this happens.


See our local commands cheat sheet for many useful commands.

Using divio

The divio command is used mainly to manage your local project’s resources and to interact with our Control Panel. You have already used divio project setup and divio project list; you can also use it to do things like push and pull database and media content. Try:

divio project dashboard

See the Divio CLI reference for more.

Using docker

The docker command is mostly used to manage Docker processes, and Docker itself. Mostly, you’ll never need to use it, but it can be useful when you need to understand what Docker is doing on your machine, or for certain operations. You have already used docker ps. Try:

docker info

Using docker-compose

The docker-compose command is used mainly to control and interact with your local project. You will mostly use it to start the local project and open a shell in the local web container. You have already used docker-compose build and docker-compose up.

Just for example, try:

docker-compose run web python shell

which will open a Django shell in the web container.

You now know how to set up a project in the local environment, and launch it. The next step is to do some development work in the project, test it, and deploy it to the cloud.