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Sharetribe is an open source platform you can use to create your own peer-to-peer marketplace.

Would you like to set up your marketplace in a minute without touching code? Head to

Want to get in touch? Email


Note: If you encounter problems with the installation, you can try asking for help from the developer community in our developer chatroom. When you join, please use threads. Instructions for this and other chat related things can be found at chat instructions.

  • Before you get started, you need to have or install the following:
    • Ruby (we use currently version 2.1.2 and don't guarantee everything working with others. If you need multiple versions of Ruby, RVM can help.)
    • RubyGems
    • Bundler gem install bundler
    • Git
  • Get the code (git clone is probably easiest way: git clone git://
  • Go to the root folder of Sharetribe
  • Copy the example database configuration file as database.yml, which will be used to read the database information: cp config/database.example.yml config/database.yml
  • You need to have a database available for Sharetribe and a DB user account that has access to it. We have only used MySQL, so we give no guarantees of things working with others (e.g. PostgreSQL). (If you are going to do development you should have separate databases for development and testing also).
    • If you are new to MySQL:
    • You can install MySQL Community Server two ways:
      1. If you are on a Mac, use homebrew: $ brew install mysql (highly recommended)
      2. Download a MySQL installer from here
        • If you are using Mac OS X, consider installing MySQL.prefPane as a server startup/shutdown tool. It is packaged with the MySQL downloadable installer, but can be easily installed as a stand-alone.
    • These commands can help you in creating a user and databases.
  • Edit details according to your database to config/database.yml (if you are not going to develop Sharetribe, it's enough to fill in the production database)
    • Probably you only need to change the passwords to the same that you used when creating the databases.
  • Install Sphinx. Version 2.1.4 has been used successfully, but probably also bit newer and older versions will work. See Sphinx installation instructions (no need to start it yet. You can try running searchd command, but it should fail at this point complaining about missing config)
  • Install Imagemagick
  • run bundle install in the project root directory (sharetribe) to install required gems
  • (In the following commands, leave out the RAILS_ENV=production part if you want to get Sharetribe running in development mode.) Load the database structure to your database: rake RAILS_ENV=production db:schema:load
  • run sphinx index rake RAILS_ENV=production ts:index
  • start sphinx daemon rake RAILS_ENV=production ts:start
  • If you want to run Sharetribe in production mode (i.e. you are not developing the software) you'll need to precompile the assets. This puts the Javascript and CSS files in right places. Use command: rake assets:precompile
  • If you want to enable Sharetribe to send email locally (in the development environment), you might want to change the email settings in the config file. There is an example of configuring settings using a gmail account, but you can also use any other SMTP server. If you do not touch the settings, the development version works otherwise normally but might crash in instances where it tries to send email (like when sending a message to another user).
  • Invoke the delayed job worker on your local machine: rake RAILS_ENV=production jobs:work. You should see "Starting job worker" and then the process stays open. The worker processes tasks that are done in the background, like processing images and sending email notifications. To exit the worker, press ctrl+c.
  • Start the server. The simplest way is to use command rails server which will start it on Webrick, which is good option for development use.
    • To start the server in production environment, use command rails server -e production
  • Open browser and go to the server URL (e.g. Fill in the form to create a new marketplace and admin use

Congrats! You should be now able to access your marketplace and modify it from the admin area.

Experimental: Docker container installation


Prerequisite: You have to have docker and fig installed. If you are on a non-linux OS, you need to have vagrant. If you can successfully run docker info, then you should be ok to go.

brew cask install virtualbox
brew cask install vagrant
brew install docker
brew install fig


vagrant up
export DOCKER_HOST=tcp://   # Set Docker CLI to connect to Vagrant box. This IP is set in Vagrantfile
export DOCKER_TLS_VERIFY=                     # disable TLS
docker info                                   # this should run ok now

Sharetribe installation

  1. Modify config/database.yml. The easiest way is to use database.docker.yml

    cp config/database.docker.yml config/database.yml

  2. Load schema (only on the first run)

    fig run web /bin/bash -l -c 'bundle exec rake db:schema:load'

  3. Run the app

    fig up web

  4. Set to point to docker IP

    Modify your /etc/hosts file. If you're in Linux, point to If you are on OSX (or Windows), point to

  5. All done! Open your browser and URL and create a new marketplace with name docker

Development tips and tricks

If you are planning to use Docker for development, here are some tips and tricks to make development workflow smoother.

  1. Add figrun function to your zsh/bash config.

    Here is an example for ZSH:

    figrun() {
     CMD="bundle exec ${PARAMS}"
     fig run web /bin/bash -l -c "$CMD"

    With this function, you can run commands on the web container like this:

    figrun rake routes
  2. Use Zeus

    First, add figzeus helper function to your zsh/bash config.

    Here is an example for ZSH:

    figzeus() {
     CMD="zeus ${PARAMS}"
     fig run web /bin/bash -l -c "$CMD"

    To use Zeus, do not start server by saying fig up web! Do this instead:

    Start Zeus server in one terminal tab:

    fig up zeus

    In another tab, start rails server:

    figzeus s

Advanced settings

  • Default configurations are in config/config.default.yml. If you need to change these configs, it's recommended to create a file config/config.yml. The configurations in user-specific configuration file will override the default configurations. You can also set configurations to environment variables.
  • It's not recommended to server static assets from Rails server in production. Instead, you should serve assets from Amazon S3 or use Apache/Nginx server in from. In this case, you'll need to set the value of serve_static_assets_in_production to false


Sharetribe's open source version supports payments using Braintree Marketplace. To enable payments with Braintree you need to have a legal business in The United States. You can sign up for Braintree here. Then you need to create a new row to the payment gateways table with your Braintree merchant_id, master_merchant_id, public_key, private_key and client_side_encryption_key.

Right now PayPal payments are only available in marketplaces hosted at, because they require special permissions from PayPal. We hope to bring support for PayPal payments also to the open source version of Sharetribe in the future.


See release notes for information about what has changed and if special tasks are needed to update.


Would you like to make Sharetribe better? Here's a basic guide.


We use a tool called WebTranslateIt (WTI) for translations. If you'd like to translate Sharetribe to your language or improve existing translations, please use WTI for that. You need an invite to use WTI. To get an invite, email and mention that you would like to become a translator.

Known issues

See and please report any issues you find.

Developer docs

MIT License

Sharetribe is open source under MIT license. See LICENSE file for details.

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