Install & Setup

Setup from Docker Compose

This method is recommended as it makes install, setup, and maintenance much easier for you, to the cost of a small overhead compared to the size of the database.

It can be used to:

  • Replicate the MusicBrainz website/web service/database,

  • Test your own app that queries MusicBrainz web service,

  • Develop MusicBrainz Server itself.

See MusicBrainz Docker and its release notes.

Setup from source code

This can potentially be a very laborious and time consuming method of getting a functioning MusicBrainz server. Use it only if you cannot use MusicBrainz Docker for some reason (disk space, development, etc.)

Get a copy of musicbrainz-server from git:

git clone --recursive musicbrainz-server
cd musicbrainz-server

And follow the instructions in the INSTALL file.


The setup process may look daunting, but please don’t let this discourage you; the INSTALL is thorough and contains a lot of information, and we are willing to provide assistance. If you have questions about installing, join us in the #metabrainz IRC channel or post a question on the community forum and we will attempt to help you out.

We recommend that you dive in and give it a try - who knows how far you’ll get and what you might learn along the way!


In order to set up a running MusicBrainz server with the full database you will need:

  • A linux box, preferably Ubuntu.

  • 60GB+ of free disk space, (if you are a developer and only want the server code and database structure 2GB+ should do, count 6GB+ if you want sample data).

  • Git knowledge which will enable you to check out the source code.

  • PostgreSQL, Perl, Node.js, and some other dependencies (See all software prerequisites)

As a developer the following knowledge/skills are beneficial:

  • Perl and a number of perl modules, PostgreSQL, React/JSX.

  • How to compile and install packages from source on a Linux box.

  • How to patch existing packages, although we can help you out if you have questions about that.


The server has never been ported to Windows, and we suspect that it would be a fair amount of work to make that happen.