Building nginx from Sources

The build is configured using the configure command. It defines various aspects of the system, including the methods nginx is allowed to use for connection processing. At the end it creates a Makefile .

The configure command supports the following parameters:

  • --help

    • prints a help message.
  • --prefix=path

    • defines a directory that will keep server files. This same directory will also be used for all relative paths set by configure (except for paths to libraries sources) and in the nginx.conf configuration file. It is set to the /usr/local/nginx directory by default.
  • --sbin-path=path

    • sets the name of an nginx executable file. This name is used only during installation. By default the file is named prefix/sbin/nginx .
  • --modules-path=path

    • defines a directory where nginx dynamic modules will be installed. By default the prefix/modules directory is used.
  • --conf-path=path

    • sets the name of an nginx.conf configuration file. If needs be, nginx can always be started with a different configuration file, by specifying it in the command-line parameter -c file . By default the file is named prefix/conf/nginx.conf .
  • --error-log-path=path

    • sets the name of the primary error, warnings, and diagnostic file. After installation, the file name can always be changed in the nginx.conf configuration file using the error_log directive. By default the file is named prefix/logs/error.log .
  • --pid-path=path

    • sets the name of an nginx.pid file that will store the process ID of the main process. After installation, the file name can always be changed in the nginx.conf configuration file using the pid directive. By default the file is named prefix/logs/nginx.pid .
  • --lock-path=path

    • sets a prefix for the names of lock files. After installation, the value can always be changed in the nginx.conf configuration file using the lock_file directive. By default the value is prefix/logs/nginx.lock .
  • --user=name

    • sets the name of an unprivileged user whose credentials will be used by worker processes. After installation, the name can always be changed in the nginx.conf configuration file using the user directive. The default user name is nobody.
  • --group=name

    • sets the name of a group whose credentials will be used by worker processes. After installation, the name can always be changed in the nginx.conf configuration file using the user directive. By default, a group name is set to the name of an unprivileged user.

--build=name

  • sets an optional nginx build name.

  • --builddir=path

    • sets a build directory.
  • --with-select_module
    --without-select_module

    • enables or disables building a module that allows the server to work with the select() method. This module is built automatically if the platform does not appear to support more appropriate methods such as kqueue, epoll, or /dev/poll.
  • --with-poll_module
    --without-poll_module

    • enables or disables building a module that allows the server to work with the poll() method. This module is built automatically if the platform does not appear to support more appropriate methods such as kqueue, epoll, or /dev/poll.
  • --with-threads

  • --with-file-aio

  • --with-http_ssl_module

    • enables building a module that adds the HTTPS protocol support to an HTTP server. This module is not built by default. The OpenSSL library is required to build and run this module.
  • --with-http_v2_module

    • enables building a module that provides support for HTTP/2. This module is not built by default.
  • --with-http_realip_module

    • enables building the ngx_http_realip_module module that changes the client address to the address sent in the specified header field. This module is not built by default.
  • --with-http_addition_module

    • enables building the ngx_http_addition_module module that adds text before and after a response. This module is not built by default.
  • --with-http_xslt_module
    --with-http_xslt_module=dynamic

    • enables building the ngx_http_xslt_module module that transforms XML responses using one or more XSLT stylesheets. This module is not built by default. The libxml2 and libxslt libraries are required to build and run this module.
  • --with-http_image_filter_module
    --with-http_image_filter_module=dynamic

    • enables building the ngx_http_image_filter_module module that transforms images in JPEG, GIF, PNG, and WebP formats. This module is not built by default.
  • --with-http_geoip_module
    --with-http_geoip_module=dynamic

    • enables building the ngx_http_geoip_module module that creates variables depending on the client IP address and the precompiled MaxMind databases. This module is not built by default.
  • --with-http_sub_module

    • enables building the ngx_http_sub_module module that modifies a response by replacing one specified string by another. This module is not built by default.
  • --with-http_dav_module

    • enables building the ngx_http_dav_module module that provides file management automation via the WebDAV protocol. This module is not built by default.
  • --with-http_flv_module

    • enables building the ngx_http_flv_module module that provides pseudo-streaming server-side support for Flash Video (FLV) files. This module is not built by default.
  • --with-http_mp4_module

    • enables building the ngx_http_mp4_module module that provides pseudo-streaming server-side support for MP4 files. This module is not built by default.
  • --with-http_gunzip_module

    • enables building the ngx_http_gunzip_module module that decompresses responses with “ Content-Encoding: gzip ” for clients that do not support “gzip” encoding method. This module is not built by default.
  • --with-http_gzip_static_module

    • enables building the ngx_http_gzip_static_module module that enables sending precompressed files with the “ .gz ” filename extension instead of regular files. This module is not built by default.
  • --with-http_auth_request_module

    • enables building the ngx_http_auth_request_module module that implements client authorization based on the result of a subrequest. This module is not built by default.
  • --with-http_random_index_module

    • enables building the ngx_http_random_index_module module that processes requests ending with the slash character (‘ / ’) and picks a random file in a directory to serve as an index file. This module is not built by default.
  • --with-http_secure_link_module

  • --with-http_degradation_module

    • enables building the ngx_http_degradation_module module. This module is not built by default.
  • --with-http_slice_module

    • enables building the ngx_http_slice_module module that splits a request into subrequests, each returning a certain range of response. The module provides more effective caching of big responses. This module is not built by default.
  • --with-http_stub_status_module

    • enables building the ngx_http_stub_status_module module that provides access to basic status information. This module is not built by default.
  • --without-http_charset_module

    • disables building the ngx_http_charset_module module that adds the specified charset to the “Content-Type” response header field and can additionally convert data from one charset to another.
  • --without-http_gzip_module

    • disables building a module that compresses responses of an HTTP server. The zlib library is required to build and run this module.
  • --without-http_ssi_module

    • disables building the ngx_http_ssi_module module that processes SSI (Server Side Includes) commands in responses passing through it.
  • --without-http_userid_module

  • --without-http_access_module

    • disables building the ngx_http_access_module module that allows limiting access to certain client addresses.
  • --without-http_auth_basic_module

    • disables building the ngx_http_auth_basic_module module that allows limiting access to resources by validating the user name and password using the “HTTP Basic Authentication” protocol.
  • --without-http_mirror_module

    • disables building the ngx_http_mirror_module module that implements mirroring of an original request by creating background mirror subrequests.
  • --without-http_autoindex_module

  • --without-http_geo_module

    • disables building the ngx_http_geo_module module that creates variables with values depending on the client IP address.
  • --without-http_map_module

    • disables building the ngx_http_map_module module that creates variables with values depending on values of other variables.
  • --without-http_split_clients_module

  • --without-http_referer_module

    • disables building the ngx_http_referer_module module that can block access to a site for requests with invalid values in the “Referer” header field.
  • --without-http_rewrite_module

  • --without-http_proxy_module

  • --without-http_fastcgi_module

  • --without-http_uwsgi_module

  • --without-http_scgi_module

  • --without-http_grpc_module

  • --without-http_memcached_module

  • --without-http_limit_conn_module

    • disables building the ngx_http_limit_conn_module module that limits the number of connections per key, for example, the number of connections from a single IP address.
  • --without-http_limit_req_module

    • disables building the ngx_http_limit_req_module module that limits the request processing rate per key, for example, the processing rate of requests coming from a single IP address.
  • --without-http_empty_gif_module

  • --without-http_browser_module

    • disables building the ngx_http_browser_module module that creates variables whose values depend on the value of the “User-Agent” request header field.
  • --without-http_upstream_hash_module

    • disables building a module that implements the hash load balancing method.
  • --without-http_upstream_ip_hash_module

    • disables building a module that implements the ip_hash load balancing method.
  • --without-http_upstream_least_conn_module

    • disables building a module that implements the least_conn load balancing method.
  • --without-http_upstream_keepalive_module

  • --without-http_upstream_zone_module

    • disables building a module that makes it possible to store run-time state of an upstream group in a shared memory zone.
  • --with-http_perl_module
    --with-http_perl_module=dynamic

  • --with-perl_modules_path=path

    • defines a directory that will keep Perl modules.
  • --with-perl=path

    • sets the name of the Perl binary.
  • --http-log-path=path

    • sets the name of the primary request log file of the HTTP server. After installation, the file name can always be changed in the nginx.conf configuration file using the access_log directive. By default the file is named prefix/logs/access.log .
  • --http-client-body-temp-path=path

    • defines a directory for storing temporary files that hold client request bodies. After installation, the directory can always be changed in the nginx.conf configuration file using the client_body_temp_path directive. By default the directory is named prefix/client_body_temp .
  • --http-proxy-temp-path=path

    • defines a directory for storing temporary files with data received from proxied servers. After installation, the directory can always be changed in the nginx.conf configuration file using the proxy_temp_path directive. By default the directory is named prefix/proxy_temp .
  • --http-fastcgi-temp-path=path

    • defines a directory for storing temporary files with data received from FastCGI servers. After installation, the directory can always be changed in the nginx.conf configuration file using the fastcgi_temp_path directive. By default the directory is named prefix/fastcgi_temp .
  • --http-uwsgi-temp-path=path

    • defines a directory for storing temporary files with data received from uwsgi servers. After installation, the directory can always be changed in the nginx.conf configuration file using the uwsgi_temp_path directive. By default the directory is named prefix/uwsgi_temp .
  • --http-scgi-temp-path=path

    • defines a directory for storing temporary files with data received from SCGI servers. After installation, the directory can always be changed in the nginx.conf configuration file using the scgi_temp_path directive. By default the directory is named prefix/scgi_temp .
  • --without-http

    • disables the HTTP server.
  • --without-http-cache

    • disables HTTP cache.
  • --with-mail
    --with-mail=dynamic

  • --with-mail_ssl_module

    • enables building a module that adds the SSL/TLS protocol support to the mail proxy server. This module is not built by default. The OpenSSL library is required to build and run this module.
  • --without-mail_pop3_module

    • disables the POP3 protocol in mail proxy server.
  • --without-mail_imap_module

    • disables the IMAP protocol in mail proxy server.
  • --without-mail_smtp_module

    • disables the SMTP protocol in mail proxy server.
  • --with-stream
    --with-stream=dynamic

    • enables building the stream module for generic TCP/UDP proxying and load balancing. This module is not built by default.
  • --with-stream_ssl_module

    • enables building a module that adds the SSL/TLS protocol support to the stream module. This module is not built by default. The OpenSSL library is required to build and run this module.
  • --with-stream_realip_module

    • enables building the ngx_stream_realip_module module that changes the client address to the address sent in the PROXY protocol header. This module is not built by default.
  • --with-stream_geoip_module
    --with-stream_geoip_module=dynamic

    • enables building the ngx_stream_geoip_module module that creates variables depending on the client IP address and the precompiled MaxMind databases. This module is not built by default.
  • --with-stream_ssl_preread_module

  • --without-stream_limit_conn_module

    • disables building the ngx_stream_limit_conn_module module that limits the number of connections per key, for example, the number of connections from a single IP address.
  • --without-stream_access_module

  • --without-stream_geo_module

    • disables building the ngx_stream_geo_module module that creates variables with values depending on the client IP address.
  • --without-stream_map_module

    • disables building the ngx_stream_map_module module that creates variables with values depending on values of other variables.
  • --without-stream_split_clients_module

  • --without-stream_return_module

    • disables building the ngx_stream_return_module module that sends some specified value to the client and then closes the connection.
  • --without-stream_upstream_hash_module

    • disables building a module that implements the hash load balancing method.
  • --without-stream_upstream_least_conn_module

    • disables building a module that implements the least_conn load balancing method.
  • --without-stream_upstream_zone_module

    • disables building a module that makes it possible to store run-time state of an upstream group in a shared memory zone.
  • --with-google_perftools_module

  • --with-cpp_test_module

    • enables building the ngx_cpp_test_module module.
  • --add-module=path

    • enables an external module.
  • --add-dynamic-module=path

    • enables an external dynamic module.
  • --with-compat

    • enables dynamic modules compatibility.
  • --with-cc=path

    • sets the name of the C compiler.
  • --with-cpp=path

    • sets the name of the C preprocessor.
  • --with-cc-opt=parameters

    • sets additional parameters that will be added to the CFLAGS variable. When using the system PCRE library under FreeBSD, --with-cc-opt="-I /usr/local/include" should be specified. If the number of files supported by select() needs to be increased it can also be specified here such as this: --with-cc-opt="-D FD_SETSIZE=2048" .
  • --with-ld-opt=parameters

    • sets additional parameters that will be used during linking. When using the system PCRE library under FreeBSD, --with-ld-opt="-L /usr/local/lib" should be specified.
  • --with-cpu-opt=cpu

    • enables building per specified CPU: pentium , pentiumpro , pentium3 , pentium4 , athlon , opteron , sparc32 , sparc64 , ppc64 .
  • --without-pcre

    • disables the usage of the PCRE library.
  • --with-pcre

    • forces the usage of the PCRE library.
  • --with-pcre=path

    • sets the path to the sources of the PCRE library. The library distribution (version 4.4 — 8.43) needs to be downloaded from the PCRE site and extracted. The rest is done by nginx’s ./configure and make . The library is required for regular expressions support in the location directive and for the ngx_http_rewrite_module module.
  • --with-pcre-opt=parameters

    • sets additional build options for PCRE.
  • --with-pcre-jit

    • builds the PCRE library with “just-in-time compilation” support (1.1.12, the pcre_jit directive).
  • --with-zlib=path

    • sets the path to the sources of the zlib library. The library distribution (version 1.1.3 — 1.2.11) needs to be downloaded from the zlib site and extracted. The rest is done by nginx’s ./configure and make . The library is required for the ngx_http_gzip_module module.
  • --with-zlib-opt=parameters

    • sets additional build options for zlib.
  • --with-zlib-asm=cpu

    • enables the use of the zlib assembler sources optimized for one of the specified CPUs: pentium , pentiumpro .
  • --with-libatomic

    • forces the libatomic_ops library usage.
  • --with-libatomic=path

    • sets the path to the libatomic_ops library sources.
  • --with-openssl=path

    • sets the path to the OpenSSL library sources.
  • --with-openssl-opt=parameters

    • sets additional build options for OpenSSL.
  • --with-debug

Example of parameters usage (all of this needs to be typed in one line):

./configure
    --sbin-path=/usr/local/nginx/nginx
    --conf-path=/usr/local/nginx/nginx.conf
    --pid-path=/usr/local/nginx/nginx.pid
    --with-http_ssl_module
    --with-pcre=../pcre-8.44
    --with-zlib=../zlib-1.2.11

After configuration, nginx is compiled and installed using make .