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PleromaPi – Run your own distributed social network on RaspberryPi November 5, 2020

Posted by GuySoft in open source, programming, python.
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Hey all,

The latest Raspeberry Pi I am releasing is a distro that lets you flash and run social network called Pleroma. Its part of a group federated social networks known as the Fediverse. There are about 4 million users to date, although this does not compare to the giants today, its enough that the software is fairly mature and it looks and feel like networks you know, and there are enough people to follow and get a decent feed to read. It also mean you can use it for different uses not covered by mainsteam social networks.

Requirements

  1. A domain name that redirects to your Raspsberry Pi – you need a domain name because communication from server-to-server happens on HTTPs, which needs a domain for the signature to work. And laso because usernames are in format @user@server.tld .
  2. Raspberry Pi prefrebly 3B+ , 4B and above.
  3. Pi should be connected to internet.

Setup

  1. Flash the PleromaPi image from official mirror (source code). Get the nightly build or latest stable release (at the moment the initlal release).
  2. Configure your WiFi by editing pleromapi-wpa-supplicant.txt at the root of the flashed card when using it like a flash drive
  3. Configure the Pleroma settings at
    /boot/docker-compose/pleroma/environments/pleroma/pleroma.env
    and set:
  4. # Make sure to use your specific domain and email, otherwise you won't get an HTTPs cerfificate ADMIN_EMAIL=admin@ops.pleroma.social NOTIFY_EMAIL=pleroma+admin@ops.pleroma.social DOMAIN=pleroma.gnethomelinux.com VIRTUAL_HOST=pleroma.gnethomelinux.com LETSENCRYPT_HOST=pleroma.gnethomelinux.com LETSENCRYPT_EMAIL=your_email_sent_to_letsencrypt@example.com
  5. Boot your Pi and make sure its connected to the internet. wait for it to pull the latest Pleroma docker container, it should take a while. You can SSH to it and make sure its all working in order. You can ssh to the hostname pleromapi.local, username and password like in rpios (pi/raspberry)
  6. Create an admin account by running:
    /home/pi/scripts/make_admin_user
  7. Wait a while, you can test if you have no domain name set if Plermoa is accessible by running:
    curl -k http://pleromapi.local -H "Host: ops.pleroma.social"
  8. You can change pleroma settings at /var/lib/pleroma/config.exs
    The data is saved there and its recommended you back it up once you are actually using the instance.
    In later versions I should be able to make the Pi auto-mount an external harddrive, and then you could store all the information there.

Source code is avilable here:
https://github.com/guysoft/PleromaPi
The docker-compose settings are forked on Pleroma’s gitlab:
https://git.pleroma.social/guysoft/pleroma-docker-compose/

Thats it! You should have a running Pleroma instance which is connected to the federated social network known as the Fediverse.

I would really value comments on how to improve this so it would be easy and hassle free to set up a social network instance.

Having your own node in the network mean you have full control on what is allowed to be posted, and what servers your Pi will allow to view. You can federate or defederate any content and you are not restricted to the current networks. So no more censorship, or moderate content you and people on your server don’t wish to see.

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