Update - January 2022: I have switched back to using Netlify as my main hosting provider. While sourcehut was great, minor issues regarding SSL certs expiring, build time slowness and other odd issues prevented me from fully enjoying the experience. YMMV
I recently decided to switch my personal, static site’s hosting from Netlify to sourcehut pages. The process went fairly smoothly with only a couple minor hiccups; nothing rage-inducing. After everything was up and running smoothly, I figured writing out a step-by-step tutorial might help others who are thinking of doing a similar switch (or looking to host their first static site).
But first, let me briefly explain why I made the switch in the first place…
Using Netlify as your static host is simple, intuitive and comes packed with a great deal of extra functionality you can easily add-on. So, why would I decide to switch over to sourcehut? The best answer comes directly off the main homepage of sourcehut.org:
After realizing all that, it’s pretty difficult to stick with Netlify’s proprietary stack…
I should note that using sourcehut pages does require you to be a contributing (read: paying) member on the platform. I’m a cheapo and selected the $2/month option but you might be inclined to donate more. Paying this “fee” is perfectly fine for me, considering the hosting quality (speed and storage) it affords me. It also doesn’t hurt that I get the “feel good vibes” of supporting an important, open source product.
Keeping that in mind, let’s get into setting up our static site!
In order to have your Jekyll site build and push the correct files live, you will need to use sourcehut’s build system. This will run every time you push out a new change to your repo (new blog post, page content changes, styling updates).
To make things easier, you can copy the build file below (remember to use your own information for usernames, git repo naming etc):
image: debian/stable oauth: pages.sr.ht/PAGES:RW packages: - ruby-full - ruby-dev environment: site: yourusername.srht.site sources: - https://git.sr.ht/~yourusername/your-repo-name tasks: - install-bundler: | sudo gem install bundler - build: | cd your-repo-name bundle install bundle exec jekyll build - package: | cd your-repo-name/_site tar -cvz . > ../../site.tar.gz - upload: | acurl -f https://pages.sr.ht/publish/$site -Fcontentfirstname.lastname@example.org
Save this file as
.build.yml and place it in the root directory of your Jekyll source code.
Then, you just need to push your changes to the repo. If everything was setup properly, you’ll be able to see your live site at
https://yourusername.srht.site (just give it a little bit of time to run the full build process)
If you’re like me and want to use your own custom domain - have no fear! This process is actually quite easy.
First, add a new A Record through your domain provider:
@ IN A 188.8.131.52
Then change the following
environment parameter inside your existing
environment: site: yourcustomdomain.com
And that’s it - custom domain set! If you run into any issues check out the official documentation on custom domains.
Hopefully this helps to streamline the process for others to host their static sites through sourcehut. Having open and healthy competition among host providers and
git workflows is essential to avoiding vendor lock-in.
Even low-effort support for open-source products (like where you host your static site or FOSS projects) can go a long way. Just some food for thought.
As always, I'd love to read your feedback in my public inbox!