How To Setup DigitalOcean Server To Host Your Websites

DigitalOcean is a well-known cloud server provider with a mission to simplify cloud computing so developers and their teams can spend more time building software that changes the world.

It is one of the top choices to host your websites. Currently, this blog is also hosted on DigitalOcean. It is designed for developers with an intuitive control panel, predictable pricing, team accounts, and more.

DigitalOcean has many different plans, including Basic (Standard), General Purpose, Memory Optimized, and CPU Optimized.

The Basic plan offers standard virtual machines with a mix of memory and compute resources. Best for small projects that can handle variable levels of CPU performance, like blogs, web apps and dev/test environments. It has the most affordable price in DigitalOcean, where you can get 1GB Memory, 1 CPU Core, 25GB SSD, and 1 TB Transfer for only $5 / month.

In this Basic plan, you will also see a very interesting $15 / month plan, you should try it, which have 3 variants,

  • 1 GB Memory, 3 vCPU
  • 2 GB Memory, 2 vCPU
  • 3 GB Memory, 1 vCPU

Currently, DigitalOcean has 13 worldwide datacenters: New York, San Francisco, Amsterdam, London, Frankfurt, Toronto, Bangalore, and Singapore. You can choose the server location that is close to you or your customers.

In this post, we will discuss how to set up the DigitalOcean server to host your websites (web applications).

Choosing RunCloud To Setup Your DigitalOcean Server

There are many ways to host your website using DigitalOcean, for example, you can read this DigitalOcean tutorial, Initial Server Setup with Ubuntu 18.04 or How To Install WordPress with LEMP on Ubuntu 18.04, which requires some basic Linux skills to do it.

DigitalOcean also has provided some one-click droplets to set up the server quickly, for example:

Then why should you use RunCloud to setup your DigitalOcean server?

There are many strong reasons for you to use RunCloud for DigitalOcean.

  • RunCloud simplifies server management experience. Either using DigitalOcean or other providers, you only need to master RunCloud once for all cloud server providers. You don’t need to be a Linux expert to build a website powered by DigitalOcean.
  • You can easily manage multiple servers (DigitalOcean and others) from one single RunCloud dashboard.
  • You can manage multiple web applications (websites) in one server using RunCloud.
  • You can easily change the web application stack from native Nginx to Nginx-Apache2 hybrid and vice versa for each web application in your server. No need to spin a new server only to try to use Nginx or Apache.
  • You can easily change the PHP version (7.0, 7.1, 7.2, 7.3, 7.4) of each web application in your server anytime. A different web application may require a different PHP version and no need to spin a new server to host another website with a different PHP version.
  • You can easily set up Let’s Encrypt SSL/TLS (https) to secure every web application in your server. RunCloud also supports wildcard Let’s Encrypt SSL and custom certificate.
  • You can easily clone your web application in the same server or to other servers in your RunCloud dashboard.
  • You can get notification from RunCloud server health monitoring when server load is high, RAM memory is nearly full, and disk space is low, directly to your email, telegram, or slack.
  • RunCloud supports many web applications, including WordPress (one-click install), Laravel, and any PHP web applications.
  • For WordPress users, you can use RunCloud Hub to optimize your website with server-side page caching and Redis object cache.
  • For professional WordPress developers, you can use the one-click WordPress Staging feature to create a staging version of your website easily.
  • For professional developers, you can use Git deployment from Github, BitBucket, Gitlab, to deploy your web application easily.
  • For power users, you can use the Custom Nginx Config feature to customize Nginx easily from RunCloud dashboard, without having to edit it manually.
  • For agencies, you can use our Team feature to assign a different team member to a different server with separate permission.

If you still do not have a RunCloud account, please register for 5 days free trial, no credit required.

Get Started With RunCloud

Connecting your DigitalOcean server to RunCloud is very easy. RunCloud provides three different methods for DigitalOcean.

  1. Server Provisioning using DigitalOcean API key
  2. RunCloud One-Click Droplet on DigitalOcean Marketplace
  3. Direct Server Installation via IP Address and root password
  4. Manual Server Installation via IP Address

Method 1. DigitalOcean Server Provisioning (Recommended)

With our Server Provisioning feature, you can set up a server in DigitalOcean directly from the RunCloud dashboard by providing an API key from DigitalOcean to RunCloud.

You only need to leave the RunCloud dashboard once to get this key and add it to RunCloud 3rd Party API Key Settings.

Within the RunCloud dashboard, for any future server creations, you will be able to add new servers without having to leave your dashboard.

Video Tutorial: Setup DigitalOcean Server

YouTube video

Create DigitalOcean API Key

For DigitalOcean, the API key is Personal Access Token. You can create it here,

Create DigitalOcean Personal Access Token

You will be taken to a screen where you can generate your API key or token. Click on “Generate New Token”.

You should enable both read and write access for a smooth communication channel between RunCloud and your DigitalOcean account.

Click “Generate Token” button to get your DigitalOcean API key.

Add DigitalOcean API Key to RunCloud

There are two ways to add DigitalOcean API key in RunCloud.

You can use “Add a new key” shortcut when you try to build a server using RunCloud and choose DigitalOcean.

Or you can go to the “3rd Party API Key” menu by clicking your profile (top right), then click the Settings menu. You can see the list of all server provider API keys that you have added to RunCloud.

Once you have added your API key, you can start building the DigitalOcean server directly from the RunCloud dashboard.

Build Your DigitalOcean Server

To get started, click on the “Let’s get started” button to set up your first server.

A screen will pop up showing you a list of available server providers.

Select DigitalOcean server provider, click “Build Server” provision type, and select the API key from the list.

You can build a server from all available data center regions and instances from your DigitalOcean account.

Choose OS Image, select plan, select data center region, select an instance, and click on “Add this server” to start building your server.

After clicking the “Add This Server” button, RunCloud will begin provisioning your server automatically.

Once the provision is complete, you will land on the RunCloud dashboard.

If successful, data about your server will appear, and you have successfully set up your server with RunCloud.


Method 2. RunCloud One-Click Droplet (Recommended)

YouTube video

RunCloud One-Click Droplet allows you to spin your new DigitalOcean servers with RunCloud images from your DigitalOcean dashboard and straightly manage your servers inside RunCloud Panel afterward.

It is the second recommended method for DigitalOcean. In this case, no need to connect your server through IP Address or spin the server inside RunCloud panel.

Method 3. Setup DigitalOcean With Direct Server Installation

Using the direct server installation method, you have to go to your DigitalOcean dashboard, create a new server using Ubuntu 16.04 / 18.04 / 20.04 LTS OS image.

You can connect this server by providing your server IP address and root password, then sit back and relax, and our direct server installation will set up your server in minutes.

YouTube video

Method 4. Setup DigitalOcean Manual Server Installation.

Using the manual server installation method, you have to go to your DigitalOcean dashboard, create a new server using Ubuntu 16.04 / 18.04 / 20.04 LTS OS image.

You can log in as root user to your server using an SSH client (OpenSSH/putty), run RunCloud installation script, then sit back and relax, our manual server installation will set up your server in minutes.

YouTube video


DigitalOcean is one of the top choices to host your websites in the cloud, starts from $5 / month. You can set up your DigitalOcean servers easily using RunCloud with four different methods that have been explained in this post.

After set up your DigitalOcean server, you can continue to,

Categories: Server Management, Tutorials

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