Note: This documentation is for version 1 of the Now platform. For the latest features, please see the version 2 documentation. If you have yet to upgrade, see the upgrade guide.

Introduction 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 is by downloading Now Desktop, a minimal application that runs in the 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.

Now Desktop running on macOS. Now Desktop is also available on Windows.

Alternatively, you can install Now CLI to use Now in your terminal, using npm:

npm i -g now

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>

Alternatively, use Docker to deploy your dynamic applications, or use a Dockerfile to instruct Now to build and deploy your static applications.

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.