I'm trying to build a website with access to WMS services from a GeoServer instance on the same DigitalOcean droplet as the website. The droplet is an Ubuntu 18.04 server with - tomcat8 - postgresql-10 - openjdk-8-jdk-headless - nginx

I deployed GeoServer from a web archive and if I connect using ssh from my local machine and map the droplets 8080 port to port 63334 on my local machine, I can access the GeoServer web app from http://localhost:63334/bcp_geoserver/web/ and I can also use the WMS services in a simple Leaflet map using http://localhost:63334/bcp_geoserver/LCFP/wms as an address in an HTML file on my local machine. So GeoServer appears to be working correctly.

However, if I change the address in the HTML file to http://localhost:8080/bcp_geoserver/LCFP/wms and upload it to my nginx website root folder on the droplet, I get a connection refused error for the wms services if I try to access the website through the Internet. I assume this is because I don't have a proper Nginx configuration for this website. Is there a way to configure Nginx so that the website can use the WMS services?

This is my current Nginx configuration for this website:

    server {
        listen 80;
        server_name foo.bar;
        root /var/www/foo.bar/html;
        index index.php index.html;

        location / {
                try_files $uri $uri/ =404;

        location ~ \.php$ {
                include snippets/fastcgi-php.conf;
                fastcgi_pass unix:/run/php/php7.2-fpm.sock;

        location ~ /\.ht {
                deny all;

        location /bcp_geoserver {
                proxy_pass http://localhost:8080/bcp_geoserver;
                proxy_set_header Host $host;
                proxy_set_header X-Real-IP $remote_addr;
                proxy_set_header X-Forwarded-For $proxy_add_x_forwarded_for;


I have not deployed a firewall and I have another tomcat webapp on a subdomain (also at localhost:8080) and Nginx is serving it properly with proxy_pass.

1 Answer 1


I wasn't able to figure out what the exact problem was (whether Nginx, conflicts with the other webapp on the same port, or something else) so I changed course. I installed another copy of tomcat and set it to use different ports from the default following this page: https://linoxide.com/ubuntu-how-to/install-tomcat-8-ubuntu-16-04-multiple-instances/

Then I added a new subdomain pointing to my droplet IP: gs.foo.bar

Then I deployed the Geoserver.war to ROOT in the new tomcat instance by renaming it as ROOT.war before placing it in the webapps folder.

Then I created the following Nginx configuration for the site:

server {
    client_max_body_size 100m;
    server_name gs.foo.bar;

    location / {

Then for the address to the wms service in the html file I used http://gs.foo.bar/LCFP/wms. It works. This exposed the Geoserver webapp to the internet though, so I changed the default admin password.

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