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FOSSGIS e.V. runs a development server for experimental services for the OpenStreetMap community. People with good ideas for services who don't have enough computing resources themselves can use this server to develop and run their services.


  • The server is for use by projects using OSM data and/or services that are useful to the OSM community.
  • The server is shared by many people and many programs. Try to use as few resources as possible. Coordinate with the other people using the server.
  • The server is for development and experimental use. Nobody can guarantee that it will work all the time.
  • All software and services developed and used must be Open Source. You are not allowed to run non-Open-Source-Software on this machine. You agree that all software that you developed yourself and that you are running on this machine is released under an Open Source license.
  • This server and the software running on it are a community effort. We encourage you to discuss your ideas, software, services, etc. with the other people using the server. We can all learn from each other and share what we have. Chances are that other people had similar problems before you and will have similar problems after you. Sharing is part of the community effort. If you don't want to show your code to anybody, this server is not for you. Generally software should be installed not in your home directory but in a general area where other people can have a look at it and possible even help you work on it.
  • You should make your own backups of the data that is important to you. The admins won't do it for you. Please talk to the admins if you regularly need a lot of backup space; we may be able to arrange for you to use FTP space in the server LAN.

If you want to use this server


The server runs Ubuntu Linux. You should have a basic familiarity with Linux, i. e. you must be able to login using ssh, copy files around etc. The admins will help you with installing software etc., but you'll still have to do most of the work yourself.


If you want to use this server follow these steps:

  • Create a wiki page under FOSSGIS/Server/Projects/* and explain your project there. Use the template from FOSSGIS/Server/Projects/Template.
  • Create a link from FOSSGIS/Server/Projects to your new page
  • Write an email to with a link to your wiki page.
  • The admins will now look at your project proposal. They might have some questions and you should then update your wiki page accordingly. The admins will decide whether your project can be hosted on the server. Our criteria are the general usefulness for OSM and available resources. Also the better and more detailed your project application looks, the happier the admins will admit it. Many applications will probably be rejected, because we don't have the server resources to run the software or host the needed data or because the admins don't have the time to look after another project. Don't take it personally, maybe we can accommodate you at a later time or the admins can suggest other servers that you can use. The OSM Foundation also runs a development server that might be suitable for you.
  • One of the admins will be your primary contact. Especially in the beginning he'll help you with setting up your service etc. If you have any problems you can talk to him. But remember that the admins are volunteers like you and they do have other things to do besides helping you with your project, so don't be mad if it takes a bit longer sometimes.
  • You'll be subscribed to the devserver mailing list and get an account on the machine.
  • Your project description in the wiki is added to the active projects list. It will now become a documentation page for your project that you are expected to keep updated.
  • You are responsible for the things you do on the server.

Migrating services to the tools server

Services that are used by the community, runnning well and supported by several people can later migrate to a production environment on our "tools server". Talk to the admins if you think your project is ready for "graduation".


Do I get a root account on the machine?

No, you'll only get a normal user account. If you need things done as root, talk to your admin contact. If you are an experienced Linux user and the admins see that you are doing a good job, they might invite you to join the admin group later.

Can I run web services?

Yes. But please to talk to your admin contact before you do that to make sure the security of the machine is not compromised - a web service can accidentally open the door to hackers or spammers.

Can I run batch or cron jobs?

Yes. Please coordinate with the other users of the machine on the mailing list so that not everything runs at the same time.

I have this great idea about a service we need, but I can't or won't do it myself. Can't you do it?

If you are not willing to do the work yourself, the service is not going to magically appear. Admins have enough to do already. You are welcome to discuss ideas on the mailing lists or in other places with OSMers. Maybe somebody will take up your idea. But don't add it to the projects page unless you are willing to do the work.

Is there a place to keep the source code to the project?

We suggest you keep it in the public repositories of the OpenStreetMap project at or But you can also use other public source code repositories or make the source available on the server itself.


The contract on this server will be terminated in September 2018 and this machine will be shut down.

  • Name:
  • CPU: 2,3 GHz Quad-Core
  • Disk: 2 x 1 TByte
  • RAM: 16 GB

The new server has following configuration:

(to be added)