Administration First Steps

After you successfully installed Lemmy either manually with Docker or automatically with Ansible here are some recommendations for a new administrator of a Lemmy server.

Admin Settings

The first thing to do is to go to your admin panel, which can be found by clicking on the cog at the top right next to the search icon. Here you can define a description for your site, so that people know if it is about one specific topic or if all subjects are welcome. You can also add an icon and a banner that define your server, it can for example be the logo of your organization.

Take the time to browse through the entire page to discover the different options you have to customize your Lemmy instance, on the same page you can edit your configuration file, where you can find information about your database, the email used by the server, the federation options or who is the main administrator.

It is always good to define another administrator than yourself, in case it is necessary to take actions while you take your best nap. Take a look at the moderation guide for more information on how to do this.

Check that everything is working properly


The easiest way to check that the email is set up correctly is to request a password renewal. You will need to set up an email in your settings if you have not already done so.

After that just log out, go to the Login page, enter your email in the Email or Username box and press forgot password. If everything is set up correctly, you should receive an email to renew your password. You can ignore this email.


Federation is disabled by default, and needs to be enabled either through the online admin panel or directly through the config.json file.

To test that your instance federation is working correctly execute curl -H 'Accept: application/activity+json', it should return json data, and not an .html file. If that is unclear to you, it should look similar to the output of curl -H 'Accept: application/activity+json'

Inclusion on instance list

To be included in the list of Lemmy instances on you must meet the following requirements:

  • Federate with at least one instance from the list
  • Have a site description and icon
  • Don't have closed sign-ups
  • Have at least 5 users who posted or commented at least once in the past month
  • Be on the latest major version of Lemmy
  • Be patient and wait the site to be updated, there's no fixed schedule for that

Recommended instances are defined in code here and the code that powers the crawler is visible here.

In the meantime you can always promote your server on other social networks like Mastodon using the hashtag #Lemmy.

Keeping up to date

You can subscribe to the Github RSS feeds to be informed of the latest releases:

There is also a Matrix chat for instance administrators that you can join. You'll find some really friendly people there who will help you (or at least try to) if you run into any issue.