How to Test Your NGINX Configuration Before Screwing it Up


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When you are building a new server, or configuring an existing one for the first time, it’s easy to make mistakes that can lead to downtime and poor performance. There is only one way to avoid these pitfalls: test your changes before you deploy them. This blog post will show how NGINX provides tools for testing configuration changes in real-time traffic and provide some tips on what should go into your tests.

The “configuration file /etc/nginx/nginx/conf test failed” is a problem that can occur when you are testing your NGINX configuration. It is important to test your configuration before making any changes.

How to Test Your NGINX Configuration Before Screwing it Up

We’ve all been there: you need to make “just this one little change” to your NGINX configuration, and your web server goes down without warning. Fortunately, NGINX has a solution: test config changes!

You may use built-in switches to test configuration changes in NGINX, as well as troubleshooting recommended practices and checking permissions. In this guide, you’ll discover how to get started so you never have to shut down production again!

Syntax Validation for NGINX Configuration Files

The structure for NGINX configuration files is rather strict. You can’t expect NGINX to comprehend any content you put in a configuration file. Before releasing it into a critical environment, you must first verify its syntax.

The -t option in the nginx binary may be used to test an NGINX configuration file. The -t option instructs NGINX to read the main config file (and any files referenced in it) and verify that the syntax is correct.

The -t option not only checks the syntax in the main NGINX config file, but it also reads and tests the syntax in any files referenced by an include statement.

If the configuration file’s syntax is correct, you’ll see the following:

The NGINX Configuration Test has Passed The NGINX Configuration Test has Passed

On the contrary, as you’ll see below, the -t option will notify you if you’ve made a mistake in the config file.

Error in NGINX Configuration Error in NGINX Configuration

If, for example, NGINX is unable to read an included file in the config file due to a permissions issue, the following output will appear.

In the included file, there is a permissions error. In the included file, there is a permissions error.


You should now be able to utilize NGINX to check the syntax of config files! Always remember to use the -t option when making changes to an NGINX config file!

The “nginx test specific config file” is a tool that allows you to test your NGINX configuration before screwing it up. The tool can be used on the command line or from within a Docker container.

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Related Tags

  • start nginx with different config file
  • test nginx config locally
  • nginx troubleshooting
  • update nginx config
  • nginx test config before reload

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