Five-Minute Guide to Now

With Now's help, you can deploy and publish any kind of web application (or service) in under five minutes.

This quick-start guide will show you how to deploy an app, connect it to a domain name of your choice, and configure an SSL certificate.

The best way to get started with Now on your device is by downloading Now Desktop, a minimal application that runs in your menu bar and comes with the following features:

  • Installs Now CLI and keeps it up to date automatically (the command line interface for interacting with Now).
  • Provides a real-time feed of the activity on your account and teams that you've joined.
  • Lets you deploy any kind of application or file by simply dragging and dropping it onto its menubar icon or selecting it using a file picker.

Once you've downloaded Now Desktop open it and follow the instructions.

After you've completed the signup process (you can also use the form to log in), a window should open with your account's event feed inside.

Now that we're logged in, let's begin with deploying a simple static website.

First, create a directory called my-web-app and add the following content to a file called index.html:

<!DOCTYPE html>
<html>
  <body>
    This is a static web app.
  </body>
</html>

You can also use a Node.js app or an app with a Dockerfile instead of this simple static app.

After you have added the content, change to the my-web-app directory in your terminal and run this command:

now

‚ÄčNow will deploy the app and give you a URL as shown below:

Getting a unique URL after the deployment.

This is a URL for the current deployment of the app. You can access this version of the app anytime with this URL.

Now you have a unique URL (https://my-web-app-avvuiuuwto.now.sh) for your app. But you probably want a nicer-sounding URL to send your users to. The next step is to map the "now.sh" URL to a domain name that you prefer.

Let's assume the domain name is my-web-app.com, and you haven't bought it yet.
To map this domain name to the app's unique URL, run this command:

now alias https://my-web-app-avvuiuuwto.now.sh my-web-app.com

Since you haven't bought the domain name yet, you will be asked to enter your credit card information to buy it. You can do that by running this command:

now cc add

You may choose to upgrade your account to the "Premium" plan by running this command:

now upgrade

Now, run the domain mapping command again and follow these instructions:

now alias https://my-web-app-avvuiuuwto.now.sh my-web-app.com

Once you've done that, you'll be able to access your app using https://my-web-app.com. It is automatically configured with a Let's Encrypt SSL certificate and served with HTTPS.

After mapping a domain name to a deployment.

If you've made any changes to your app, you will need to deploy the latest version of your app. To do that, run this command:

now

You will receive a unique URL for this deployment. Let's assume the new URL is https://my-web-app-ttfxzqwbwz.now.sh.

You can map this new URL to your domain name by running this command:

now alias https://my-web-app-ttfxzqwbwz.now.sh my-web-app.com

Now everything is ready.
Your users can access the updated web app at https://my-web-app.com.

These are just a few things you can do with Now. To do more with Now, follow the rest of the docs.