[en] How to use and install flylatex on Ubuntu


I have recently found a great tool called flylatex. It is  an online collaborative latex document editing tool. The cool fact about it is the freedom behind it, which mean it is free as in the word FREE 🙂 Currently flylatex is being developed by this pioneer person nicknamed as alabid. And there is an on-line git repository for it:


One other cool fact is the fact that one can install it under any operating system. My preference is Ubuntu 13.04 in this case. So let’s stop talking and start doing something. Let’s start with the dependencies first, basically open a linux shell and execute the command in below:

sudo apt-get install npm mongodb node
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install python-software-properties python g++ make
sudo add-apt-repository ppa:chris-lea/node.js
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install nodejs

Ok now we have everything we need for flylatex, let’s build it! Execute the commands in below again in a linux shell.

git clone https://github.com/alabid/flylatex.git
cd flylatex

Let’s create a mongo database before we go on, execute the command mongo in a linux shell. Once mongo shell is initiated, go ahead and use these command to create a mongo database.

use flylatex
db.users.save( {username:"flylatex"} )

Before continue on building it, edit the config.js with your favorite editor (nano, vim,…) as follows: set path as equal to a folder which you will use to store
the pdf files compiled using flylatex. In my case I set it to “/home/user/flylatexcache”, and set the mongodatabase name. In my example
I set it to “mongodb://localhost/flylatex”. And then execute the commands in below again in a linux shell.

npm install -d

Rest is to initiate mongo database and run the flylatex server, please follow the output of nodejs to find out which port flylatex is using.
In my case it used port 3000. Might be different for your case.

Here is how to initiate mongodb in a shell (I prefered to run it under screen, choice is yours to be made):

mongod --dbpath </code>/home/user/flylatexcache

And here is how to initiate flylatex in a shell, remember to navigate to flylatex folder first (I prefered to run it under screen, choice is yours to be made):

nodejs app.js

I hope you enjoyed this explanation, flylatex currently works pretty well with raw latex files. It needs some more development for functionality of adding special style files and figures.
Enjoy the freedom with flylatex!