Server Administration

These notes apply if you have installed your own version of the Smap Server. If you are using one of our hosted servers then you do not need to worry about this page.

Server Requirements

  • One of the following Ubuntu LTS Server
    • 20.04
    • 18.04
    • 16.04
  • 2GB of Memory
  • 10GB of disk

Server configuration for Performance

Small Server (2 GB RAM)

Max connections in postgresql.conf: 400


  • Max Active Survey Definitions: 60
  • Max Active Results: 60


  • JAVA_OPTS="-Djava.awt.headless=true -Xms512m -Xmx768m"

Medium Server (4 GB RAM)

Max connections in postgresql.conf: 600


  • Max Active Survey Definitions: 100
  • Max Active Results: 100


  • JAVA_OPTS="-Djava.awt.headless=true -Xms2048m -Xmx3072m"

Large Server (8 GB RAM)

Max connections in postgresql.conf: 800


  • Max Active Survey Definitions: 120
  • Max Active Results: 120


  • JAVA_OPTS="-Djava.awt.headless=true -Xms4096m -Xmx4096m"


If your version of ubuntu does not have the multiverse and universe repositories then you will need to add them:

sudo add-apt-repository universe
sudo add-apt-repository multiverse
wget {link to tar file}
tar -zxf {tar file}
cd smap/install
sudo ./

After the installation script finishes you should be able to logon with your browser using:

ident: admin
password: admin

If you have not set up an https certificate yet then the connection will be via http and you will be asked to enter your password 3 times. Using https you will not have that problem.

Using a different location

By default all files are installed under /smap in the root directory.

To use a different location, or a different drive, you can either add a symbolic link from /smap to that location or you do not want to put anything in the / directory then you can specify a different location at install time.

Logical link:

Before running install, or you can do it after installing and copy the contents of /smap to the new location
ln -s /smap /new location

Install to a custom location:

Before running install edit the script and set "filelocn" to the location that you want to use
Then run


rm -rf old
mv smap old
rm *.tgz
wget {link to tar file}
tar -zxf {tar file}
cd smap/deploy
sudo ./
sudh ./

patchdb will update the database. will replace the programs. When you run deploy it will cause an outage of around 20 seconds for your users.

Configuring for remote database

  1. Add export DBHOST={remote database address} to /etc/environment
  2. Find the "context.xml" file for tomcat. It should be at /etc/tomcat[version]/context.xml. Then set the URL for the 2 datasources to match the URL of your remote database
  3. Rerun

Sample /etc/environment:


Sample url for resource in context.xml:


Configuring a second application server

If you are using a remote database you can add additional application servers for redundancy and performance. However currently only one of these can run the subscriber batch job that applies nore submissions to the database. Otherwise a lot of false update errors will be reported as multiple subscribers clash.

Hence in all but one of your application servers specify in /etc/environment:


This should be specified before you install Smap into the new application server.


Most problems can be found in the tomcat application logs. However if there is a problem in submitting data the issue may be recorded in the subscriber logs. When submitting results the request is made to the application which writes the submitted file to the hard drive. Any issues here will be in the application log. Then every few seconds a batch job (the subscriber) will run to apply that submitted file to the database.

Application logs:

use journalctl  (Ubuntu2004)
/var/log/tomcat[x]/catalina.out  (Other versions of Ubuntu)

Subscriber logs:


Network Encryption

Generally I use certbot.

install Certbot as per If there are any issues then install certbot-auto


sudo certbot --apache certonly

Apache > 2.4.7

SSLCertificateFile /etc/letsencrypt/live/{domain name}/fullchain.pem SSLCertificateKeyFile /etc/letsencrypt/live/{domain name}/privkey.pem

Create directory /var/log/certbot

Setup Renewal

As root Crontab:

44 19 * * * certbot renew >> /var/log/certbot/renew.log 2 >&1

Check for logs in /var/log/letsencrypt/letsencrypt.log


Access to S3

As ubuntu type:

sudo apt install awscli

Get Credentials

Using the AWS console select IAM
Select create user
Specify the access type as programmatic
Select create group
Add the security policies that you want.  For example transcribe, translate, rekognition.  S3 access will also be required.
Download the csv file containing the credentials for your user

Create a credentials file called "credentials" and place it in ~ubuntu/smap/deploy/version1/resources/properties with the following format:

aws_access_key_id = ....
aws_secret_access_key = ....

Also create a script file called that contains 2 lines:

export AWS_ACCESS_KEY_ID= .....
export AWS_SECRET_ACCESS_KEY = .....

run to copy the credentials file to the locations that it is used.

Using Transcribe, Translate and Rekognition

You will need to update the limits on usage for these in the organisations tab of the users page.

S3 Bucket

Create a bucket to store backups of uploaded media files. The files in this bucket will also be used for transcribe:

Create the bucket in your S3 account
Create a file in the ubuntu home directory of your server called 'bucket'
Specify the bucket name in this file
Create another file in the ubuntu home directory called 'region'
Specify the AWS region in this file.  FOr example: ap-southeast-2
run to restart the subscriber so that it now uses the bucket

AWS Properties File

An properties file is required. This is really only used for automatic synchronisation of fieldTask but it needs to be present for other AWS services as well:

Create the file at /smap_bin/resources/properties/
Add the line:  userDevices_region=us-east-1

Disk Storage

Files are stored in /smap by default although this can be changed at install time. The subfolders contain the following directories:

  • uploadedSurveys. This is the raw XML files and attachments submitted to complete a survey form.
  • attachments. After processing attachments submitted with a survey form are stored here.
  • media. Media files that are part of survey forms. For example, images shown as choices.
  • templates. Uploaded XLS files and PDF templates
  • temp. Temporary files generated for downloads.
  • settings. Settings files used to manage the system.

Reducing disk usage

Temporary files older than a day can be deleted as the download will have well and truly completed by then.

After a submitted survey form has been sucessfully processed the contents of the XML file will be in the database and any attachments will be in the attachments folder. So deleting old files in uploadedSurveys will free u significant disk space. There are some issues to consider though:

  • If there is a problem applying the submitted file to the database then you may need to fix that problem and then re-process. So if you are confident that you will monitor and resolve all issues within say a week then you could set an automatic script to delete files from uploadedSurveys that are older than that. Of course if you miss that timeframe you could lose some data.
  • Recovery. The survey submissions may have been sucessfully processed but you might delete all of that data. No problem you can undelete. However you might then go further and erase all of your data. At this point you have 100 days to "restore" using the data in uploadedSurveys to re-appy the submissions. If this data has been deleted then you cannot do that and you will need to restore from backups.

Files in uploadedSurveys can be replicated to a long term low cost storage solution such as Azure Blob, or AWS S3. Then they can be deleted. Then when you need to recover they can be replicated back.

Files in attachments can also be replicated to long term storage and deleted. You can then configure the Apache web server to serve the attachments from the long term storage location. For example with AWS S3:

SSLProxyEngine on
ProxyPass         /attachments https://{region}{bucket}/attachments
ProxyPassReverse  /attachments https://{region}{bucket}/attachments



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