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Getting Started

For most Backstage installations, installing the standalone app will bring you the best and most streamlined experience. In this guide you will:

  • Deploy Backstage Standalone with npm packages
  • Run Backstage Standalone with a SQLite in-memory database and demo content

This guide assumes a basic understanding of working on a Linux based operating system using tools like apt-get, npm, yarn, curl. Docker knowledge is also helpful for making the best use of your Backstage installation.

If you are planning to contribute plugins or to the project in general, we advise you to use the Contributors guide to do a repository-based installation.

Prerequisites

Create your Backstage App

To install the Backstage Standalone app, we make use of npx, a tool to run Node executables straight from the registry. This tool is part of your Node.js installation. Running the command below will install Backstage. The wizard will create a subdirectory inside your current working directory.

npx @backstage/create-app@latest

Note: If this fails on the yarn install step, it's likely that you will need to install some additional dependencies which are used to configure isolated-vm. You can find out more in their requirements section, and then run yarn install manually again after you've completed those steps.

The wizard will ask you for the name of the app, which will also be the name of the directory

Screenshot of the wizard asking for a name for the app.

Run the Backstage app

When the installation is complete you can go to the application directory and start the app. The yarn dev command will run both the frontend and backend as separate processes (named [0] and [1]) in the same window.

cd my-backstage-app
yarn dev

Screenshot of the command output, with the message web pack compiled successfully

It might take a little while, but as soon as the message [0] webpack compiled successfully appears, you can open a browser and directly navigate to your freshly installed Backstage portal at http://localhost:3000. You can start exploring the demo immediately. Please note that the in-memory database will be cleared when you restart the app, so you'll most likely want to carry on with the database steps.

Screenshot of the Backstage portal.

In the next part of this tutorial, you'll learn how to change to a persistent database, configure authentication, and add your first integration. Continue with getting started: Configuring Backstage.

Share your experiences, comments, or suggestions with us: on discord, file issues for any feature or plugin suggestions, or bugs you have, and feel free to contribute!