Meet Coolify: A Comprehensive Alternative to Heroku, Netlify, and Vercel

In today's fast-paced digital world, the ability to quickly deploy, manage, and scale applications is crucial for developers and businesses alike. This is where Platform as a Service (PaaS) solutions come into play. They provide an all-in-one environment for application development, deployment, and management, abstracting away the complexities of server management. While there are several popular PaaS solutions like Heroku, Netlify, and Vercel, a new player in the field is making waves with its versatility and open-source nature: Coolify.

Coolify is an all-in-one PaaS that helps you self-host your applications, databases, or services (like WordPress, Plausible Analytics, Ghost) without managing your servers. It's known as an open-source and self-hostable alternative to Heroku, Netlify, and Vercel. In this post, we will delve deep into Coolify, exploring its features, benefits, and technical aspects to understand why it stands out as a robust solution for developers and businesses.

Any Language

One of the standout features of Coolify is its compatibility with a wide range of programming languages and frameworks. This flexibility allows you to launch static websites, APIs, backends, databases, services, and other types of applications. Whether you're working with JavaScript, Python, Ruby, PHP, or any other language, Coolify can support your development needs. This broad compatibility ensures that developers are not locked into a specific technology stack, providing the freedom to use the best tools for their projects.

Any Server

Coolify's deployment flexibility is another major advantage. You can deploy your resources to any server, including your own servers, VPS, Raspberry Pi, EC2, DigitalOcean, Linode, Hetzner, and more. All you need is an SSH connection. This means you can choose the most cost-effective and suitable server for your needs, whether it's a local machine for development, a cloud provider for production, or a cluster of Raspberry Pis for a hobby project. This deployment flexibility ensures that Coolify can fit into any infrastructure setup, making it a versatile tool for developers.

Any Use Case

Coolify is designed to handle a wide range of deployment scenarios. You can deploy your resources to a single server, multiple servers, or Docker Swarm clusters according to your requirements. Support for Kubernetes is also on the way, further expanding its capabilities. This versatility makes Coolify suitable for a variety of use cases, from small personal projects to large-scale enterprise applications.

Push to Deploy

In modern development workflows, Git integration is considered the norm. Coolify provides seamless integration with both hosted and self-hosted Git platforms like GitHub, GitLab, Bitbucket, Gitea, and others. This integration allows developers to push their code to a repository and have it automatically deployed to their servers. This push-to-deploy functionality streamlines the deployment process, making it easy to get your changes live with minimal effort.

Free SSL Certificates

Security is a top priority for any web application. Coolify takes care of automatically setting up and renewing Let's Encrypt SSL certificates for your custom domains. This means you can relax and not have to deal with the complexities of SSL certificate management. By providing free SSL certificates, Coolify ensures that your applications are secure and compliant with modern web standards.

Automatic DB Backups

Data loss can be catastrophic for any application. Coolify offers automatic database backups to any S3 compatible solution, allowing you to easily restore your data with just a few clicks if any problems occur. This automatic backup feature provides peace of mind, knowing that your data is safe and can be quickly recovered in case of an emergency.


Webhooks are a powerful tool for integrating different systems and automating workflows. Coolify supports webhooks, allowing you to integrate into your CI/CD pipelines or create custom integrations using GitHub Actions, GitLab CI, Bitbucket Pipelines, or any other CI/CD tool of your choice. This webhook support provides flexibility and automation capabilities, enabling you to create sophisticated deployment workflows.

Powerful API

Coolify offers a robust API that enables you to automate deployments, manage resources, and integrate with your current tools. This API provides limitless possibilities for customization and automation, allowing you to tailor Coolify to fit your specific needs. Whether you're building a custom dashboard, integrating with third-party services, or automating repetitive tasks, Coolify's API provides the tools you need.


Collaboration is key in modern development teams. Coolify allows you to share your projects with team members and work together on them. You can control permissions and roles for each member, ensuring that everyone has the appropriate level of access. This collaborative functionality makes Coolify an excellent choice for teams, allowing developers to work together seamlessly.

Pull Request Deployments

Reviewing contributions quickly is essential for maintaining a fast development pace. Coolify supports automagic deployment of new commits and pull requests separately, allowing you to quickly review contributions and speed up your teamwork. This pull request deployment feature ensures that you can easily test and review changes before merging them into your main codebase.

Server Automations

Once your server is connected, Coolify will handle numerous tasks automatically, allowing you to concentrate on your code. This automation includes setting up environments, managing deployments, and handling server maintenance tasks. By automating these tasks, Coolify frees up your time to focus on writing code and building features.


Monitoring is essential for maintaining the health and performance of your applications. Coolify keeps an eye on your deployments, servers, disk usage, and other aspects, and notifies you if any issues arise. This monitoring functionality ensures that you can quickly identify and address problems, minimizing downtime and ensuring a smooth user experience.


Coolify provides notifications through your chosen channels like Discord, Telegram, and email in case of any events on your server or with your deployments. These notifications keep you informed about the status of your applications and servers, ensuring that you can quickly respond to any issues that arise.

Cloud Option

The cloud option is the easiest way to get started with Coolify. It is a paid service where you can bring your own servers to a hosted Coolify instance. This option provides several benefits:

  • No Maintenance: You do not need to take care of the maintenance of Coolify.
  • Same Price: You get it at the same price as if you host it yourself.
  • Extra Support: You get extra support to help you with any issues.
  • Free Email Notifications: You get free email notifications to keep you informed about the status of your applications.

The cloud option is ideal for those who want the benefits of Coolify without the hassle of maintaining the infrastructure.

Self-hosted Option

Coolify also offers a self-hosted option, providing all the features of the cloud version, but requiring you to take care of the maintenance. The self-hosted option offers several benefits:

  • No Hidden Costs: Cloud providers can become costly once you surpass the free tier. By self-hosting, you avoid these hidden costs and can save a significant amount of money.
  • Cost Efficiency: You get way more resources for your money, saving thousands of dollars every month.
  • Ease of Use: With software like Coolify, you can start hosting in minutes without any maintenance work.
  • Data Privacy: By self-hosting, you have complete control over your data, ensuring that it is not being misused.
  • No Features Behind Paywall: Everything is included in the open-source software version, with no limitations.
  • Unlimited Hosting: You have the freedom to host an unlimited number of websites on any quantity of servers without restrictions.
  • Nice UI: Coolify provides a simple and easy-to-use UI to manage your servers and applications.
  • Open Source: You can see the source code and contribute to it, shaping the future of the software.

The self-hosted option is ideal for those who want full control over their infrastructure and data, with the added benefits of cost savings and open-source flexibility.

Getting Started with Coolify

To get started with Coolify, you need a server. It can be a VPS, a Raspberry Pi, or any other server that you have SSH access to.


Supported Operating Systems
  • Debian based Linux distributions (Debian, Ubuntu, etc.)
  • Redhat based Linux distributions (CentOS, Fedora, Redhat, AlmaLinux, Rocky, etc.)
  • SUSE based Linux distributions (SLES, SUSE, openSUSE, etc.)
  • Arch Linux
  • Raspberry Pi OS (Raspbian)
Supported Architectures
  • AMD64
  • ARM64
Minimum Required Server
For Coolify
  • 2 CPUs
  • 2 GBs memory
  • 30+ GB of storage for the images.
For Your Resources

The server resources you choose depend on your usage. If you are planning to run a lot of things, consider buying a server with more resources. Hosting services like Supabase, Appwrite, or Posthog requires more resources than hosting a static site.


Automated Installation

This method works with Docker Engine (not Docker Desktop) on any supported Linux distribution. The installation script will:

  • Install basic commands: curl wget git jq jc
  • Install Docker Engine (24+).
  • Configure proper logging for Docker Engine.
  • Create directory structure at /data/coolify for all the configuration files.
  • Create an SSH key for Coolify to manage the server from itself at /data/coolify/ssh/keys/id.root@host.docker.internal.
  • Install and start dockerized Coolify.

Manual Installation

For those who prefer manual installation, Coolify provides detailed instructions on their website, ensuring that you can set up the platform according to your specific requirements.

Docker Desktop

For Windows users, Coolify supports installation via Docker Desktop. The steps include:

  • Installing Docker Desktop.
  • Creating a directory to hold all Coolify-related data
  • Copying and to the directory.
  • Renaming to docker-compose.yml and to .env.
  • Creating a coolify Docker network.
  • Starting Coolify with the docker compose up command.

You can then access Coolify on port localhost:8000 of your machine.


Coolify is a powerful, versatile, and open-source PaaS that offers a comprehensive solution for deploying, managing, and scaling applications. Its wide compatibility with different languages, frameworks, and servers, coupled with its robust feature set, makes it an excellent choice for developers and businesses alike. Whether you choose the cloud option for ease of use or the self-hosted option for full control and cost savings, Coolify provides the tools and flexibility you need to succeed. With its ongoing development and support for future technologies like Kubernetes, Coolify is poised to become a leading platform in the PaaS space.

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