Configuration Options

The functionality and features of CKAN can be modified using many different configuration options. These are generally set in the CKAN configuration file, but some of them can also be set via Environment variables or at runtime.

Environment variables

Some of the CKAN configuration options can be defined as Environment variables on the server operating system.

These are generally low-level critical settings needed when setting up the application, like the database connection, the Solr server URL, etc. Sometimes it can be useful to define them as environment variables to automate and orchestrate deployments without having to first modify the CKAN configuration file.

These options are only read at startup time to update the config object used by CKAN, but they won’t be accessed any more during the lifetime of the application.

CKAN environment variable names match the options in the configuration file, but they are always uppercase and prefixed with CKAN_ (this prefix is added even if the corresponding option in the ini file does not have it), and replacing dots with underscores.

This is the list of currently supported environment variables, please refer to the entries in the CKAN configuration file section below for more details about each one:

    'sqlalchemy.url': 'CKAN_SQLALCHEMY_URL',
    'ckan.datastore.write_url': 'CKAN_DATASTORE_WRITE_URL',
    'ckan.datastore.read_url': 'CKAN_DATASTORE_READ_URL',
    'ckan.redis.url': 'CKAN_REDIS_URL',
    'solr_url': 'CKAN_SOLR_URL',
    'solr_user': 'CKAN_SOLR_USER',
    'solr_password': 'CKAN_SOLR_PASSWORD',
    'ckan.site_id': 'CKAN_SITE_ID',
    'ckan.site_url': 'CKAN_SITE_URL',
    'ckan.storage_path': 'CKAN_STORAGE_PATH',
    'ckan.datapusher.url': 'CKAN_DATAPUSHER_URL',
    'smtp.server': 'CKAN_SMTP_SERVER',
    'smtp.starttls': 'CKAN_SMTP_STARTTLS',
    'smtp.user': 'CKAN_SMTP_USER',
    'smtp.password': 'CKAN_SMTP_PASSWORD',
    'smtp.mail_from': 'CKAN_SMTP_MAIL_FROM',
    'ckan.max_resource_size': 'CKAN_MAX_UPLOAD_SIZE_MB'

Updating configuration options during runtime

CKAN configuration options are generally defined before starting the web application (either in the CKAN configuration file or via Environment variables).

A limited number of configuration options can also be edited during runtime. This can be done on the administration interface or using the config_option_update() API action. Only sysadmins can edit these runtime-editable configuration options. Changes made to these configuration options will be stored in the database and persisted when the server is restarted.

Extensions can add (or remove) configuration options to the ones that can be edited at runtime. For more details on how to do this check Making configuration options runtime-editable.

CKAN configuration file

From CKAN 2.9, by default, the configuration file is located at /etc/ckan/default/ckan.ini. Previous releases the configuration file(s) were: /etc/ckan/default/development.ini or /etc/ckan/default/production.ini. This section documents all of the config file settings, for reference.


After editing your config file, you need to restart your webserver for the changes to take effect.


Unless otherwise noted, all configuration options should be set inside the [app:main] section of the config file (i.e. after the [app:main] line):



use = egg:Paste#http
host =
port = 5000

# This setting will not work, because it's outside of [app:main].
ckan.site_logo = /images/masaq.png

# This setting will work.
ckan.plugins = stats text_view recline_view

If the same option is set more than once in your config file, the last setting given in the file will override the others.

General Settings



debug = False

Default value: False

This enables the Flask-DebugToolbar in the web interface, makes Webassets serve unminified JS and CSS files, and enables CKAN templates’ debugging features.

You will need to ensure the Flask-DebugToolbar python package is installed, by activating your ckan virtual environment and then running:

pip install -r /usr/lib/ckan/default/src/ckan/dev-requirements.txt

If you are running CKAN on Apache, you must change the WSGI configuration to run a single process of CKAN. Otherwise the execution will fail with: AssertionError: The EvalException middleware is not usable in a multi-process environment. Eg. change:

WSGIDaemonProcess ckan_default display-name=ckan_default processes=2 threads=15
WSGIDaemonProcess ckan_default display-name=ckan_default threads=15


This option should be set to False for a public site. With debug mode enabled, a visitor to your site could execute malicious commands.



ckan.legacy_route_mappings = {"home": "home.index", "about": "home.about",
                              "search": ""}

Default value: {"home": "home.index", "about": "home.about"}

This can be used when using an extension that is still using old (Pylons-based) route names to maintain compatibility.


This configuration will be removed when migration to Flask is completed. Please update the extension code to use the new Flask-based route names.

Development Settings

Example: =

Default value: localhost

Host name to use when running the development server.



ckan.devserver.port = 5005

Default value: 5000

Port to use when running the development server.



ckan.devserver.threaded = true

Default value: False

Controls whether the development server should handle each request in a separate thread.



ckan.devserver.multiprocess = 8

Default value: 1

If greater than 1 then the development server will handle each request in a new process, up to this maximum number of concurrent processes.



ckan.devserver.watch_patterns = mytheme/**/*.yaml mytheme/**/*.json

Default value: None

A list of files the reloader should watch to restart the development server, in addition to the Python modules (for example configuration files)



ckan.devserver.ssl_cert = path/to/host.cert

Default value: None (SSL disabled)

Path to a certificate file that will be used to enable SSL (ie to serve the local development server on https://localhost:5000). You can generate a self-signed certificate and key (see ckan.devserver.ssl_key) running the following commands:

openssl genrsa 2048 > host.key
chmod 400 host.key
openssl req -new -x509 -nodes -sha256 -days 3650 -key host.key > host.cert

After that you can run CKAN locally with SSL using this command:

ckan -c /path/to/ckan.ini run --ssl-cert=/path/to/host.cert --ssl-key=/path/to/host.key

Alternatively, setting this option to adhoc will automatically generate a new certificate file (on each server reload, which means that you’ll get a browser warning about the certificate on each reload).



ckan.devserver.ssl_key = path/to/host.key

Default value: None (SSL disabled)

Path to a certificate file that will be used to enable SSL (ie to serve the local development server on https://localhost:5000). See ckan.devserver.ssl_cert for more details. This option also supports the adhoc value, with the same caveat.

Repoze.who Settings



who.timeout = 3600

Default value: None

This defines how long (in seconds) until a user is logged out after a period of inactivity. If the setting isn’t defined, the session doesn’t expire. Not active by default.


Default value: True

This determines whether the HttpOnly flag will be set on the repoze.who authorization cookie. The default in the absence of the setting is True. For enhanced security it is recommended to use the HttpOnly flag and not set this to False, unless you have a good reason for doing so.

Example: = True

Default value: False

This determines whether the secure flag will be set for the repoze.who authorization cookie. If True, the cookie will be sent over HTTPS. The default in the absence of the setting is False.



who.samesite = Strict

Default value: Lax

This determines whether the SameSite flag will be set for the repoze.who authorization cookie. Allowed values are Lax (the default one), Strict or None. If set to None, must be set to True.

Database Settings



sqlalchemy.url = postgres://tester:pass@localhost/ckantest3

This defines the database that CKAN is to use. The format is:

sqlalchemy.url = postgres://USERNAME:PASSWORD@HOST/DBNAME




Custom sqlalchemy config parameters used to establish the main database connection.

To get the list of all the available properties check the SQLAlchemy documentation



ckan.datastore.write_url = postgresql://ckanuser:pass@localhost/datastore

The database connection to use for writing to the datastore (this can be ignored if you’re not using the DataStore extension). Note that the database used should not be the same as the normal CKAN database. The format is the same as in sqlalchemy.url.



ckan.datastore.read_url = postgresql://readonlyuser:pass@localhost/datastore

The database connection to use for reading from the datastore (this can be ignored if you’re not using the DataStore extension). The database used must be the same used in ckan.datastore.write_url, but the user should be one with read permissions only. The format is the same as in sqlalchemy.url.




Custom sqlalchemy config parameters used to establish the DataStore database connection.

To get the list of all the available properties check the SQLAlchemy documentation



ckan.datastore.default_fts_lang = english

Default value: english

This can be ignored if you’re not using the DataStore extension.

The default language used when creating full-text search indexes and querying them. It can be overwritten by the user by passing the “lang” parameter to “datastore_search” and “datastore_create”.



ckan.datastore.default_fts_index_method = gist

Default value: gist

This can be ignored if you’re not using the DataStore extension.

The default method used when creating full-text search indexes. Currently it can be “gin” or “gist”. Refer to PostgreSQL’s documentation to understand the characteristics of each one and pick the best for your instance.



ckan.datastore.sqlsearch.enabled = True

Default value: False

This option allows you to enable the datastore_search_sql() action function, and corresponding API endpoint.

This action function has protections from abuse including:

  • parsing of the query to prevent unsafe functions from being called, see ckan.datastore.sqlsearch.allowed_functions_file
  • parsing of the query to prevent multiple statements
  • prevention of data modification by using a read-only database role
  • use of explain to resolve tables accessed in the query to check against user permissions
  • use of a statement timeout to prevent queries from running indefinitely

These protections offer some safety but are not designed to prevent all types of abuse. Depending on the sensitivity of private data in your datastore and the likelihood of abuse of your site you may choose to disable this action function or restrict its use with a IAuthFunctions plugin.

Example: = 1000

Default value: 100

Default number of rows returned by datastore_search, unless the client specifies a different limit (up to

NB this setting does not affect datastore_search_sql.

Example: = 1000000

Default value: 32000

Maximum allowed value for the number of rows returned by the datastore.

Specifically this limits:

  • datastore_search’s limit parameter.
  • datastore_search_sql queries have this limit inserted.



ckan.datastore.sqlsearch.allowed_functions_file = /path/to/my_allowed_functions.txt

Default value: File included in the source code at ckanext/datastore/allowed_functions.txt.

Allows to define the path to a text file listing the SQL functions that should be allowed to run on queries sent to the datastore_search_sql() function (if enabled, see ckan.datastore.sqlsearch.enabled). Function names should be listed one on each line, eg:


Site Settings



ckan.site_url =

Default value: (an explicit value is mandatory)

Set this to the URL of your CKAN site. Many CKAN features that need an absolute URL to your site use this setting.

This setting should only contain the protocol (e.g. http://), host (e.g. and (optionally) the port (e.g. :8080). In particular, if you have mounted CKAN at a path other than / then the mount point must not be included in ckan.site_url. Instead, you need to set ckan.root_path.


It is mandatory to complete this setting


This setting should not have a trailing / on the end.



apikey_header_name = API-KEY

Default value: X-CKAN-API-Key & Authorization

This allows another http header to be used to provide the CKAN API key. This is useful if network infrastructure blocks the Authorization header and X-CKAN-API-Key is not suitable.



ckan.cache_expires = 2592000

Default value: 0

This sets Cache-Control header’s max-age value.



ckan.cache_enabled = True

Default value: False

This enables cache control headers on all requests. If the user is not logged in and there is no session data a Cache-Control: public header will be added. For all other requests the Cache-control: private header will be added.



ckan.use_pylons_response_cleanup_middleware = true

Default value: true

This enables middleware that clears the response string after it has been sent. This helps CKAN’s memory management if CKAN repeatedly serves very large requests.



ckan.mimetype_guess = file_ext

Default value: file_ext

There are three options for guessing the mimetype of uploaded or linked resources: file_ext, file_contents, None.

file_ext will guess the mimetype by the url first, then the file extension.

file_contents will guess the mimetype by the file itself, this tends to be inaccurate.

None will not store the mimetype for the resource.



ckan.static_max_age = 2592000

Default value: 3600

Controls CKAN static files’ cache max age, if we’re serving and caching them.



ckan.tracking_enabled = True

Default value: False

This controls if CKAN will track the site usage. For more info, read Page View Tracking.



ckan.valid_url_schemes = http https ftp sftp

Default value: http https ftp

Controls what uri schemes are rendered as links.

Authorization Settings

More information about how authorization works in CKAN can be found the Organizations and authorization section.



ckan.auth.anon_create_dataset = False

Default value: False

Allow users to create datasets without registering and logging in.



ckan.auth.create_unowned_dataset = False

Default value: True

Allow the creation of datasets not owned by any organization.



ckan.auth.create_dataset_if_not_in_organization = False

Default value: True

Allow users who are not members of any organization to create datasets, default: true. create_unowned_dataset must also be True, otherwise setting create_dataset_if_not_in_organization to True is meaningless.



ckan.auth.user_create_groups = True

Default value: False

Allow users to create groups.



ckan.auth.user_create_organizations = False

Default value: True

Allow users to create organizations.



ckan.auth.user_delete_groups = False

Default value: True

Allow users to delete groups.



ckan.auth.user_delete_organizations = False

Default value: True

Allow users to delete organizations.



ckan.auth.create_user_via_api = False

Default value: False

Allow new user accounts to be created via the API by anyone. When False only sysadmins are authorised.



ckan.auth.create_user_via_web = True

Default value: True

Allow new user accounts to be created via the Web.



ckan.auth.roles_that_cascade_to_sub_groups = admin editor

Default value: admin

Makes role permissions apply to all the groups or organizations down the hierarchy from the groups or organizations that the role is applied to.

e.g. a particular user has the ‘admin’ role for group ‘Department of Health’. If you set the value of this option to ‘admin’ then the user will automatically have the same admin permissions for the child groups of ‘Department of Health’ such as ‘Cancer Research’ (and its children too and so on).



ckan.auth.public_user_details = False

Default value: True

Restricts anonymous access to user information. If is set to False accessing users details when not logged in will raise a Not Authorized exception.


This setting should be used when user registration is disabled (ckan.auth.create_user_via_web = False), otherwise users can just create an account to see other users details.



ckan.auth.public_activity_stream_detail = True

Default value: False (however the default config file template sets it to True)

Restricts access to ‘view this version’ and ‘changes’ in the Activity Stream pages. These links provide users with the full edit history of datasets etc - what they showed in the past and the diffs between versions. If this option is set to False then only admins (e.g. whoever can edit the dataset) can see this detail. If set to True, anyone can see this detail (assuming they have permission to view the dataset etc).



ckan.auth.allow_dataset_collaborators = True

Default value: False

Enables or disable collaborators in individual datasets. If True, in addition to the standard organization based permissions, users can be added as collaborators to individual datasets with different roles, regardless of the organization they belong to. For more information, check the documentation on Dataset collaborators.


If this setting is turned off in a site where there already were collaborators created, you must reindex all datasets to update the permission labels, in order to prevent access to private datasets to the previous collaborators.



ckan.auth.allow_admin_collaborators = True

Default value: False

Allows dataset collaborators to have the “Admin” role, allowing them to add more collaborators or remove existing ones. By default, collaborators can only be managed by administrators of the organization the dataset belongs to. For more information, check the documentation on Dataset collaborators.


If this setting is turned off in a site where admin collaborators have been already created, existing collaborators with role “admin” will no longer be able to add or remove collaborators, but they will still be able to edit and access the datasets that they are assigned to.



ckan.auth.allow_collaborators_to_change_owner_org = True

Default value: False

Allows dataset collaborators to change the owner organization of the datasets they are collaborators on. Defaults to False, meaning that collaborators with role admin or editor can edit the dataset metadata but not the organization field.



ckan.auth.create_default_api_keys = True

Default value: False

Determines if a an API key should be automatically created for every user when creating a user account. If set to False (the default value), users can manually create an API token from their profile instead. See Authentication and API tokens: for more details.

API Token Settings



api_token.nbytes = 20

Default value: 32

Number of bytes used to generate unique id for API Token.



api_token.jwt.encode.secret = file:/path/to/private/key

Default value: same as beaker.session.secret config option with string: type.

A key suitable for the chosen algorithm(api_token.jwt.algorithm):

  • for asymmetric algorithms: path to private key with file: prefix. I.e file:/path/private/key
  • for symmetric algorithms: plain string, sufficiently long for security with string: prefix. I.e string:123abc

Value must have prefix, which defines its type. Supported prefixes are:

  • string: - Plain string, will be used as is.
  • file: - Path to file. Content of the file will be used as key.



api_token.jwt.decode.secret = file:/path/to/public/

Default value: same as beaker.session.secret config option with string: type.

A key suitable for the chosen algorithm(api_token.jwt.algorithm):

  • for asymmetric algorithms: path to public key with file: prefix. I.e file:/path/public/
  • for symmetric algorithms: plain string, sufficiently long for security with string: prefix. I.e string:123abc

Value must have prefix, which defines it’s type. Supported prefixes are:

  • string: - Plain string, will be used as is.
  • file: - Path to file. Content of the file will be used as key.



api_token.jwt.algorithm = RS256

Default value: HS256

Algorithm to sign the token with, e.g. “ES256”, “RS256”

Search Settings



ckan.site_id = my_ckan_instance

CKAN uses Solr to index and search packages. The search index is linked to the value of the ckan.site_id, so if you have more than one CKAN instance using the same solr_url, they will each have a separate search index as long as their ckan.site_id values are different. If you are only running a single CKAN instance then this can be ignored.

Note, if you change this value, you need to rebuild the search index.



solr_url =

Default value:

This configures the Solr server used for search. The Solr schema found at that URL must be one of the ones in ckan/config/solr (generally the most recent one). A check of the schema version number occurs when CKAN starts.

Optionally, solr_user and solr_password can also be configured to specify HTTP Basic authentication details for all Solr requests.


If you change this value, you need to rebuild the search index.



solr_timeout = 120

Default value: 60

The option defines the timeout in seconds until giving up on a request. Raising this value might help you if you encounter a timeout exception.

Example: = true

Default value: true

Make all changes immediately available via the search after editing or creating a dataset. Default is true. If for some reason you need the indexing to occur asynchronously, set this option to false.


This is equivalent to explicitly load the synchronous_search plugin.

Example: = false

Default value: true

Make ckan commit changes solr after every dataset update change. Turn this to false if on solr 4.0 and you have automatic (soft)commits enabled to improve dataset update/create speed (however there may be a slight delay before dataset gets seen in results).

Example: = dataset

Default value: false

Controls whether a search page (e.g. /dataset) should also show custom dataset types. The default is false meaning that no search page for any type will show other types. true will show other types on the /dataset search page. Any other value (e.g. dataset or document will be treated as a dataset type and that type’s search page will show datasets of all types.

Example: = false

Default value: true

Controls whether the default search page (/dataset) should include private datasets visible to the current user or only public datasets visible to everyone.

Example: = name asc

Default value: score desc, metadata_modified desc

Controls whether the default search page (/dataset) should different sorting parameter by default when the request does not specify sort.



search.facets.limit = 100

Default value: 50

Sets the default number of searched facets returned in a query.



search.facets.default = 10

Default number of facets shown in search results. Default 10.



ckan.extra_resource_fields = alt_url

Default value: None

List of the extra resource fields that would be used when searching.

Example: = 1000

Default value: 1000

Maximum allowed value for rows returned. Specifically this limits:

  • package_search’s rows parameter
  • group_show and organization_show’s number of datasets returned when specifying include_datasets=true



ckan.group_and_organization_list_max = 1000

Default value: 1000

Maximum number of groups/organizations returned when listing them. Specifically this limits:

  • group_list’s limit when all_fields=false
  • organization_list’s limit when all_fields=false



ckan.group_and_organization_list_all_fields_max = 100

Default value: 25

Maximum number of groups/organizations returned when listing them in detail. Specifically this limits:

  • group_list’s limit when all_fields=true
  • organization_list’s limit when all_fields=true

Redis Settings



ckan.redis.url = redis://localhost:7000/1

Default value: redis://localhost:6379/0

URL to your Redis instance, including the database to be used.

New in version 2.7.

CORS Settings

Cross-Origin Resource Sharing (CORS) can be enabled and controlled with the following settings:



ckan.cors.origin_allow_all = True

This setting must be present to enable CORS. If True, all origins will be allowed (the response header Access-Control-Allow-Origin is set to ‘*’). If False, only origins from the ckan.cors.origin_whitelist setting will be allowed.



ckan.cors.origin_whitelist =

A space separated list of allowable origins. This setting is used when ckan.cors.origin_allow_all = False.

Plugins Settings



ckan.plugins = disqus datapreview googleanalytics follower

Default value: stats text_view recline_view

Specify which CKAN plugins are to be enabled.


If you specify a plugin but have not installed the code, CKAN will not start.

Format as a space-separated list of the plugin names. The plugin name is the key in the [ckan.plugins] section of the extension’s For more information on plugins and extensions, see Extending guide.


The order of the plugin names in the configuration file influences the order that CKAN will load the plugins in. As long as each plugin class is implemented in a separate Python module (i.e. in a separate Python source code file), the plugins will be loaded in the order given in the configuration file.

When multiple plugins are implemented in the same Python module, CKAN will process the plugins in the order that they’re given in the config file, but as soon as it reaches one plugin from a given Python module, CKAN will load all plugins from that Python module, in the order that the plugin classes are defined in the module.

For simplicity, we recommend implementing each plugin class in its own Python module.

Plugin loading order can be important, for example for plugins that add custom template files: templates found in template directories added earlier will override templates in template directories added later.


Fix CKAN’s plugin loading order to simply load all plugins in the order they’re given in the config file, regardless of which Python modules they’re implemented in.



ckanext.stats.cache_enabled = True

Default value: True

This controls if we’ll use the 1 day cache for stats.



ckan.resource_proxy.max_file_size = 1048576

Default value: 1048576 (1 MB)

This sets the upper file size limit for in-line previews. Increasing the value allows CKAN to preview larger files (e.g. PDFs) in-line; however, a higher value might cause time-outs, or unresponsive browsers for CKAN users with lower bandwidth. If left commented out, CKAN will default to 1 MB.



ckan.resource_proxy.chunk_size = 8192

Default value: 4096

This sets size of the chunk to read and write when proxying. Raising this value might save some CPU cycles. It makes no sense to lower it below the page size, which is default.

Front-End Settings



ckan.site_title = Open Data Scotland

Default value: CKAN

This sets the name of the site, as displayed in the CKAN web interface.



ckan.site_description = The easy way to get, use and share data

Default value: (none)

This is for a description, or tag line for the site, as displayed in the header of the CKAN web interface.



ckan.site_intro_text = Nice introductory paragraph about CKAN or the site in general.

Default value: (none)

This is for an introductory text used in the default template’s index page.



ckan.site_about = A _community-driven_ catalogue of _open data_ for the Greenfield area.

Default value:

<p>CKAN is the world’s leading open-source data portal platform.</p>

<p>CKAN is a complete out-of-the-box software solution that makes data
accessible and usable – by providing tools to streamline publishing, sharing,
finding and using data (including storage of data and provision of robust data
APIs). CKAN is aimed at data publishers (national and regional governments,
companies and organizations) wanting to make their data open and available.</p>

<p>CKAN is used by governments and user groups worldwide and powers a variety
of official and community data portals including portals for local, national
and international government, such as the UK’s <a href=""></a>
and the European Union’s <a href=""></a>,
the Brazilian <a href=""></a>, Dutch and
Netherland government portals, as well as city and municipal sites in the US,
UK, Argentina, Finland and elsewhere.</p>

<p>CKAN: <a href=""></a><br />
CKAN Tour: <a href=""></a><br />
Features overview: <a href=""></a></p>

Format tips:

  • multiline strings can be used by indenting following lines
  • the format is Markdown


Whilst the default text is translated into many languages (switchable in the page footer), the text in this configuration option will not be translatable. For this reason, it’s better to overload the snippet in home/snippets/about_text.html. For more information, see Theming guide.



ckan.main_css = /base/css/my-custom.css

Default value: /base/css/main.css

With this option, instead of using the default main.css, you can use your own.



ckan.favicon =

Default value: /images/icons/ckan.ico

This sets the site’s favicon. This icon is usually displayed by the browser in the tab heading and bookmark.



ckan.legacy_templates = True

Default value: False

This controls if the legacy genshi templates are used.


This is option is deprecated and has no effect any more.



ckan.datasets_per_page = 10

Default value: 20

This controls the pagination of the dataset search results page. This is the maximum number of datasets viewed per page of results.



package_hide_extras = my_private_field other_field

Default value: (empty)

This sets a space-separated list of extra field key values which will not be shown on the dataset read page.


While this is useful to e.g. create internal notes, it is not a security measure. The keys will still be available via the API and in revision diffs.


If there is a page which allows you to download a dump of the entire catalogue then specify the URL here, so that it can be advertised in the web interface. For example:

ckan.dumps_url =

For more information on using dumpfiles, see Exporting Datasets to JSON Lines.


If there is a page which allows you to download a dump of the entire catalogue then specify the format here, so that it can be advertised in the web interface. dumps_format is just a string for display. Example:

ckan.dumps_format = CSV/JSON


The public key for your reCAPTCHA account, for example:

ckan.recaptcha.publickey = 6Lc...-KLc

To get a reCAPTCHA account, sign up at:


The private key for your reCAPTCHA account, for example:

ckan.recaptcha.privatekey = 6Lc...-jP

Setting both ckan.recaptcha.publickey and ckan.recaptcha.privatekey adds captcha to the user registration form. This has been effective at preventing bots registering users and creating spam packages.



ckan.default_group_sort = name

Default Value: ‘title’

Defines if some other sorting is used in group_list and organization_list by default when the request does not specify sort.



ckan.gravatar_default = disabled

Default value: identicon

This controls the default gravatar style. Gravatar is used by default when a user has not set a custom profile picture, but it can be turn completely off by setting this option to “disabled”. In that case, a placeholder image will be shown instead, which can be customized overriding the templates/user/snippets/placeholder.html template.



ckan.debug_supress_header = False

Default value: False

This configs if the debug information showing the controller and action receiving the request being is shown in the header.


This info only shows if debug is set to True.

Resource Views Settings



ckan.views.default_views = image_view webpage_view recline_grid_view

Default value: image_view recline_view

Defines the resource views that should be created by default when creating or updating a dataset. From this list only the views that are relevant to a particular resource format will be created. This is determined by each individual view.

If not present (or commented), the default value is used. If left empty, no default views are created.


You must have the relevant view plugins loaded on the ckan.plugins setting to be able to create the default views, eg:

ckan.plugins = image_view webpage_view recline_grid_view datatables_view ...

ckan.views.default_views = image_view webpage_view recline_grid_view



ckan.preview.json_formats = json

Default value: json

Space-delimited list of JSON based resource formats that will be rendered by the Text view plugin (text_view)



ckan.preview.xml_formats = xml rdf rss

Default value: xml rdf rdf+xml owl+xml atom rss

Space-delimited list of XML based resource formats that will be rendered by the Text view plugin (text_view)



ckan.preview.text_formats = txt plain

Default value: txt plain text/plain

Space-delimited list of plain text based resource formats that will be rendered by the Text view plugin (text_view)



ckan.preview.image_formats = png jpeg jpg gif

Default value: png jpeg jpg gif

Space-delimited list of image-based resource formats that will be rendered by the Image view plugin (image_view)



ckan.recline.dataproxy_url =

Default value: //

Custom URL to a self-hosted DataProxy instance. The DataProxy is an external service currently used to stream data in JSON format to the Recline-based views when data is not on the DataStore. The main instance is deprecated and will be eventually shut down, so users that require it can host an instance themselves and use this configuration option to point Recline to it.



ckan.datatables.page_length_choices = 20 50 100 500 1000 5000

Default value: 20 50 100 500 1000

Space-delimited list of the choices for the number of rows per page, with the lowest value being the default initial value.


On larger screens, DataTables view will attempt to fill the table with as many rows that can fit using the lowest closest choice.



ckan.datatables.state_saving = False

Default value: True

Enable or disable state saving. When enabled, DataTables view will store state information such as pagination position, page length, row selection/s, column visibility/ordering, filtering and sorting using the browser’s localStorage. When the end user reloads the page, the table’s state will be altered to match what they had previously set up.

This also enables/disables the “Reset” and “Share current view” buttons. “Reset” discards the saved state. “Share current view” base-64 encodes the state and passes it as a url parameter, acting like a “saved search” that can be used for embedding and sharing table searches.



ckan.datatables.state_duration = 86400

Default value: 7200

Duration (in seconds) for which the saved state information is considered valid. After this period has elapsed, the table’s state will be returned to the default, and the state cleared from the browser’s localStorage.


The value 0 is a special value as it indicates that the state can be stored and retrieved indefinitely with no time limit.



ckan.datatables.data_dictionary_labels = True

Default value: True

Enable or disable data dictionary integration. When enabled, a column’s data dictionary label will be used in the table header. A tooltip for each column with data dictionary information will also be integrated into the header.



ckan.datatables.ellipsis_length = 100

Default value: 100

The maximum number of characters to show in a cell before it is truncated. An ellipsis (…) will be added at the truncation point and the full text of the cell will be available as a tooltip. This value can be overridden at the resource level when configuring a DataTables resource view.


The value 0 is a special value as it indicates that the column’s width will be determined by the column name, and cell content will word-wrap.



ckan.datatables.date_format = YYYY-MM-DD dd ww

Default value: llll

The moment.js date format to use to convert raw timestamps to a user-friendly date format using CKAN’s current locale language code. This value can be overridden at the resource level when configuring a DataTables resource view.


The value NONE is a special value as it indicates that no date formatting will be applied and the raw ISO-8601 timestamp will be displayed.



ckan.datatables.default_view = list

Default value: table

Indicates the default view mode of the DataTable (valid values: table or list). Table view is the typical grid layout, with horizontal scrolling. List view is a responsive table, automatically hiding columns as required to fit the browser viewport. In addition, list view allows the user to view, copy and print the details of a specific row. This value can be overridden at the resource level when configuring a DataTables resource view.

Theming Settings


HTML content to be inserted just before </head> tag (e.g. extra stylesheet)


ckan.template_head_end = <link rel="stylesheet" href="" type="text/css">

You can also have multiline strings. Just indent following lines. e.g.:

ckan.template_head_end =
 <link rel="stylesheet" href="/css/extra1.css" type="text/css">
 <link rel="stylesheet" href="/css/extra2.css" type="text/css">


This is only for legacy code, and shouldn’t be used anymore.



ckan.template_title_delimiter = |

Default value: -

This sets the delimiter between the site’s subtitle (if there’s one) and its title, in HTML’s <title>.



extra_template_paths = /home/okfn/brazil_ckan_config/templates

Use this option to specify where CKAN should look for additional templates, before reverting to the ckan/templates folder. You can supply more than one folder, separating the paths with a comma (,).

For more information on theming, see Theming guide.



extra_public_paths = /home/okfn/brazil_ckan_config/public

To customise the display of CKAN you can supply replacements for static files such as HTML, CSS, script and PNG files. Use this option to specify where CKAN should look for additional files, before reverting to the ckan/public folder. You can supply more than one folder, separating the paths with a comma (,).

For more information on theming, see Theming guide.



ckan.base_public_folder = public

Default value: public

This config option is used to configure the base folder for static files used by CKAN core. It is currently unused and it only accepts one value: public (Bootstrap 3, the default value from CKAN 2.8 onwards).



ckan.base_templates_folder = templates

Default value: templates

This config option is used to configure the base folder for templates used by CKAN core. It is currently unused and it only accepts one vaue: templates (Bootstrap 3, the default value from CKAN 2.8 onwards).

Storage Settings


ckan.storage_path = /var/lib/ckan

Default value: None

This defines the location of where CKAN will store all uploaded data.


ckan.max_resource_size = 100

Default value: 10

The maximum in megabytes a resources upload can be.


ckan.max_image_size = 10

Default value: 2

The maximum in megabytes an image upload can be.

Webassets Settings



ckan.webassets.path = /var/lib/ckan/webassets

Default value: webassets folder under the path specified by the ckan.storage_path option.

In order to increase performance, static assets (CSS and JS files) included via an asset tag inside templates are compiled only once, when the asset is used for the first time. All subsequent requests to the asset will use the existing file. CKAN stores the compiled webassets in the file system, in the path specified by this config option.



ckan.webassets.use_x_sendfile = true

Default value: false

When serving static files, if this setting is True, the applicatin will set the X-Sendfile header instead of serving the files directly with Flask. This will increase performance when serving the assets, but it requires that the web server (eg Nginx) supports the X-Sendfile header. See X-Sendfile for more information.

DataPusher Settings



ckan.datapusher.formats = csv xls

Default value: csv xls xlsx tsv application/csv application/ application/vnd.openxmlformats-officedocument.spreadsheetml.sheet

File formats that will be pushed to the DataStore by the DataPusher. When adding or editing a resource which links to a file in one of these formats, the DataPusher will automatically try to import its contents to the DataStore.



ckan.datapusher.url =

DataPusher endpoint to use when enabling the datapusher extension. If you installed CKAN via Installing CKAN from package, the DataPusher was installed for you running on port 8800. If you want to manually install the DataPusher, follow the installation instructions.



ckan.datapusher.callback_url_base = http://ckan:5000/

Default value: Value of ckan.site_url

Alternative callback URL for DataPusher when performing a request to CKAN. This is useful on scenarios where the host where DataPusher is running can not access the public CKAN site URL.



ckan.datapusher.assume_task_stale_after = 86400

Default value: 3600 (one hour)

In case a DataPusher task gets stuck and fails to recover, this is the minimum amount of time (in seconds) after a resource is submitted to DataPusher that the resource can be submitted again.

User Settings



ckan.user_list_limit = 50

Default value: 20

This controls the number of users to show in the Users list. By default, it shows 20 users.



ckan.user_reset_landing_page = dataset

Default value: home.index

This controls the page where users will be sent after requesting a password reset. This is ordinarily the home page, but specific sites may prefer somewhere else.

Activity Streams Settings



ckan.activity_streams_enabled = False

Default value: True

Turns on and off the activity streams used to track changes on datasets, groups, users, etc



ckan.activity_streams_email_notifications = False

Default value: False

Turns on and off the activity streams’ email notifications. You’d also need to setup a cron job to send the emails. For more information, visit Email notifications.



ckan.activity_list_limit = 31

Default value: 31

This controls the number of activities to show in the Activity Stream.



ckan.activity_list_limit_max = 100

Default value: 100

Maximum allowed value for Activity Stream limit parameter.



ckan.email_notifications_since = 2 days

Default value: infinite

Email notifications for events older than this time delta will not be sent. Accepted formats: ‘2 days’, ‘14 days’, ‘4:35:00’ (hours, minutes, seconds), ‘7 days, 3:23:34’, etc.



ckan.hide_activity_from_users = sysadmin

Hides activity from the specified users from activity stream. If unspecified, it’ll use ckan.site_id to hide activity by the site user. The site user is a sysadmin user on every ckan user with a username that’s equal to ckan.site_id. This user is used by ckan for performing actions from the command-line.

Feeds Settings



ckan.feeds.author_name = Michael Jackson

Default value: (none)

This controls the feed author’s name. If unspecified, it’ll use ckan.site_id.



ckan.feeds.authority_name =

Default value: (none)

The domain name or email address of the default publisher of the feeds and elements. If unspecified, it’ll use ckan.site_url.

Example: = 2012-03-22

Default value: (none)

A string representing the default date on which the authority_name is owned by the publisher of the feed.

Internationalisation Settings



ckan.locale_default = de

Default value: en (English)

Use this to specify the locale (language of the text) displayed in the CKAN Web UI. This requires a suitable mo file installed for the locale in the ckan/i18n. For more information on internationalization, see Translating CKAN. If you don’t specify a default locale, then it will default to the first locale offered, which is by default English (alter that with ckan.locales_offered and ckan.locales_filtered_out.



ckan.locales_offered = en de fr

Default value: (none)

By default, all locales found in the ckan/i18n directory will be offered to the user. To only offer a subset of these, list them under this option. The ordering of the locales is preserved when offered to the user.



ckan.locales_filtered_out = pl ru

Default value: (none)

If you want to not offer particular locales to the user, then list them here to have them removed from the options.



ckan.locale_order = fr de

Default value: (none)

If you want to specify the ordering of all or some of the locales as they are offered to the user, then specify them here in the required order. Any locales that are available but not specified in this option, will still be offered at the end of the list.



ckan.i18n_directory = /opt/locales/i18n/

Default value: (none)

By default, the locales are searched for in the ckan/i18n directory. Use this option if you want to use another folder.



ckan.i18n.extra_directory = /opt/ckan/extra_translations/

Default value: (none)

If you wish to add extra translation strings and have them merged with the default ckan translations at runtime you can specify the location of the extra translations using this option.



ckan.i18n.extra_gettext_domain = mydomain

Default value: (none)

You can specify the name of the gettext domain of the extra translations. For example if your translations are stored as i18n/<locale>/LC_MESSAGES/ you would want to set this option to somedomain



ckan.i18n.extra_locales = fr es de

Default value: (none)

If you have set an extra i18n directory using ckan.i18n.extra_directory, you should specify the locales that have been translated in that directory in this option.



ckan.i18n.rtl_languages = he ar fa_IR

Default value: he ar fa_IR

Allows to modify the right-to-left languages



ckan.i18n.rtl_css = /base/css/my-custom-rtl.css

Default value: /base/css/rtl.css

Allows to override the default rtl css file used for the languages defined in ckan.i18n.rtl_languages.



ckan.display_timezone = Europe/Zurich

Default value: UTC

By default, all datetimes are considered to be in the UTC timezone. Use this option to change the displayed dates on the frontend. Internally, the dates are always saved as UTC. This option only changes the way the dates are displayed.

The valid values for this options [can be found at pytz]( (pytz.all_timezones). You can specify the special value server to use the timezone settings of the server, that is running CKAN.



ckan.root_path = /my/custom/path/{{LANG}}/foo

Default value: (none)

This setting is used to construct URLs inside CKAN. It specifies two things:

  • At which path CKAN is mounted: By default it is assumed that CKAN is mounted at /, i.e. at the root of your web server. If you have configured your web server to serve CKAN from a different mount point then you need to duplicate that setting here.
  • Where the locale is added to an URL: By default, URLs are formatted as /some/url when using the default locale, or /de/some/url when using the de locale, for example. When ckan.root_path is set it must include the string {{LANG}}, which will be replaced by the locale.


The setting must contain {{LANG}} exactly as written here. Do not add spaces between the brackets.

See also

The host of your CKAN installation can be set via ckan.site_url.

The CKAN repoze config file who.ini file will also need to be edited by adding the path prefix to the options in the [plugin:friendlyform] section: login_form_url, post_login_url and post_logout_url. Do not change the login/logout_handler_path options.


ckan.resource_formats = /path/to/resource_formats

Default value: ckan/config/resource_formats.json

The purpose of this file is to supply a thorough list of resource formats and to make sure the formats are normalized when saved to the database and presented.

The format of the file is a JSON object with following format:

["Format", "Description", "Mimetype", ["List of alternative representations"]]

Please look in ckan/config/resource_formats.json for full details and and as an example.

Form Settings


ckan.dataset.create_on_ui_requires_resources = False

Default value: True

If False, there is no need to add any resources when creating a new dataset.


The URL to redirect the user to after they’ve submitted a new package form, example:

package_new_return_url =<NAME>

This is useful for integrating CKAN’s new dataset form into a third-party interface, see Form Integration.

The <NAME> string is replaced with the name of the dataset created.


The URL to redirect the user to after they’ve submitted an edit package form, example:

package_edit_return_url =<NAME>

This is useful for integrating CKAN’s edit dataset form into a third-party interface, see Form Integration.

The <NAME> string is replaced with the name of the dataset that was edited.


A url pointing to a JSON file containing a list of license objects. This list determines the licenses offered by the system to users, for example when creating or editing a dataset.

This is entirely optional - by default, the system will use an internal cached version of the CKAN list of licenses available from the

More details about the license objects - including the license format and some example license lists - can be found at the Open Licenses Service.


licenses_group_url = file:///path/to/my/local/json-list-of-licenses.json
licenses_group_url =

Email Settings



smtp.server =

Default value: None

The SMTP server to connect to when sending emails with optional port.



smtp.starttls = True

Default value: None

Whether or not to use STARTTLS when connecting to the SMTP server.



smtp.user =

Default value: None

The username used to authenticate with the SMTP server.



smtp.password = yourpass

Default value: None

The password used to authenticate with the SMTP server.



smtp.mail_from =

Default value: None

The email address that emails sent by CKAN will come from. Note that, if left blank, the SMTP server may insert its own.



smtp.mail_from =

Default value: None

The email address that will be used if someone attempts to reply to a system email. If left blank, no Reply-to will be added to the email and the value of smtp.mail_from will be used.



email_to =

Default value: None

This controls where the error messages will be sent to.



error_email_from =

Default value: None

This controls from which email the error messages will come from.