How to Install PHP-FPM with Nginx on Ubuntu

Here is how you can install PHP-FPM with Nginx on Ubuntu. In particular on Vultr’s instance i.e. Ubuntu 18.04 LTS / 19.10 / 20.04 LTS.


  • Have an Ubuntu 18.04 x64 / 19.10 x64 / 20.04 x64 instance.
  • Logged in as a root with sudo privileges.

Step 1: Add Ondrej PHP PPA repository

PHP can be installed using Ondřej Surý PPA, so install the software-properties-common package, add the ondrej PPA and update your sources using the following commands:

sudo apt-get install software-properties-common
sudo add-apt-repository -y ppa:ondrej/php
sudo apt update

Step 2: Install PHP 7.3-FPM/PHP 7.4-FPM For Nginx

Install PHP 7.3-FPM on Ubuntu using the following command:

sudo apt install php7.3-fpm
sudo apt install php7.4-fpm

Step 3: Check the PHP installation

You can use php -v the command to check the PHP version installed on your server and output will be

PHP (cli) (built: Oct 28 2019 21:34:37) ( NTS )
Copyright (c) 1997-2018 The PHP Group
Zend Engine v3.3.11, Copyright (c) 1998-2018 Zend Technologies
    with Zend OPcache, Copyright (c) 1999-2018, by Zend Technologies

In case if you have installed PHP 7.4-FPM, following will be output:

PHP 7.4.28 (cli) (built: Feb 17 2022 16:06:35) ( NTS )
Copyright (c) The PHP Group
Zend Engine v3.4.0, Copyright (c) Zend Technologies
    with Zend OPcache v7.4.28, Copyright (c), by Zend Technologies

Step 4: Install PHP Extensions

Install the most commonly used PHP extensions using the following command for PHP 7.3:

sudo apt install php7.3-common php7.3-zip php7.3-curl php7.3-xml php7.3-xmlrpc php7.3-json php7.3-mysql php7.3-pdo php7.3-gd php7.3-imagick php7.3-ldap php7.3-imap php7.3-mbstring php7.3-intl php7.3-cli php7.3-tidy php7.3-bcmath php7.3-opcache

or for PHP 7.4, run the following one.

sudo apt install php7.4-common php7.4-zip php7.4-curl php7.4-xml php7.4-xmlrpc php7.4-json php7.4-mysql php7.4-pdo php7.4-gd php7.4-imagick php7.4-ldap php7.4-imap php7.4-mbstring php7.4-intl php7.4-cli php7.4-tidy php7.4-bcmath php7.4-opcache

You can confirm the installed version of any PHP extension using apt policy command i.e. apt policy php7.3-cli and output will be

  Version table:
 *** 500
        500 eoan/main amd64 Packages
        100 /var/lib/dpkg/status
     7.3.11-0ubuntu0.19.10.1 500
        500 eoan-updates/main amd64 Packages
        500 eoan-security/main amd64 Packages
     7.3.8-1 500
        500 eoan/main amd64 Packages

Now, PHP 7.3-FPM has been installed on your Ubuntu server.

Step 5: Configure PHP 7.3-FPM/PHP 7.4-FPM

The default PHP configuration file is at /etc/php/7.3/fpm/php.ini or /etc/php/7.4/fpm/php.ini and if we want to modify the default PHP configuration, open file by using the following command:

sudo nano /etc/php/7.3/fpm/php.ini
sudo nano /etc/php/7.4/fpm/php.ini

Make the changes on the following below lines in opened file and save. Below are recommended values being great settings to apply in your environments.

max_execution_time = 180
max_input_time = 360
max_input_vars = 5000
memory_limit = 256M
cgi.fix_pathinfo = 0
file_uploads = On
post_max_size = 192M
upload_max_filesize = 96M
allow_url_fopen = On

After making the change above, save the file and close out.

Step 6: Restart PHP-FPM and Nginx

After installing PHP and related modules, all you have to do is restart PHP-FPM and Nginx to reload PHP configurations.

To restart Nginx and PHP-FPM, run the commands below

sudo php-fpm7.3 -t
sudo systemctl restart php7.3-fpm
sudo systemctl restart nginx


sudo php-fpm7.4 -t
sudo systemctl restart php7.4-fpm
sudo systemctl restart nginx


Now you have learned how to install and configure PHP-FPM on your Ubuntu server.

If you have a question or facing any problems, feel free to leave a comment.

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