1. Installing django CMS

We’ll get started by setting up our environment.

1.1. Requirements

django CMS requires Django 1.11 or newer, and Python 2.7 or 3.3 or newer. This tutorial assumes you are using Python 3.

You can find compatibility table for particular python version here

1.2. Your working environment

We’re going to assume that you have a reasonably recent version of virtualenv installed and that you have some basic familiarity with it.

1.2.1. Create and activate a virtual environment


python3.6 -m venv env   # Python 2 usage: virtualenv env
source env/bin/activate


py -m venv env

1.2.2. Update pip inside the virtual environment

pip is the Python installer. Make sure yours is up-to-date, as earlier versions can be less reliable:

pip install --upgrade pip

1.2.3. Use the django CMS installer

The django CMS installer is a helpful script that takes care of setting up a new project.

Install it:

pip install djangocms-installer

This provides you with a new command, djangocms.

Create a new directory to work in, and cd into it:

mkdir tutorial-project
cd tutorial-project

Run it to create a new Django project called mysite:

djangocms mysite

This means:

  • run the django CMS installer

  • call the new project directory mysite


djangocms-installer expects current directory to be empty at this stage, and will check for this, and will warn if it’s not. You can get it to skip the check and go ahead anyway using the -s flag; note that this may overwrite existing files.

Windows users may need to do a little extra to make sure Python files are associated correctly if that doesn’t work right away:

assoc .py=Python.file
ftype Python.File="C:\Users\Username\workspace\demo\env\Scripts\python.exe" "%1" %*

By default, the installer runs in Batch mode, and sets up your new project with some default values.

Later, you may wish to manage some of these by yourself, in which case you need to run it in Wizard mode. The default in Batch mode is to set up an English-only project, which will be sufficient for the purposes of this tutorial. You can of course simply edit the new project’s settings.py file at any time to change or add site languages or amend other settings.

The installer creates an admin user for you, with username/password admin/admin.

1.2.4. Start up the runserver

Go to mysite directory

cd mysite

Start the server using following command

cd mysite
python manage.py runserver

Open http://localhost:8000/ in your browser, where you should be invited to login, and then create a new page.

a django CMS home page

Congratulations, you now have installed a fully functional CMS.

If you need to log in at any time, append ?edit to the URL and hit Return. This will enable the toolbar, from where you can log in and manage your website.

If you are not already familiar with django CMS, you can take a few minutes to run through the basics of the django CMS tutorial for users.