Composer is a popular dependency manager for PHP, borrowing from the ideas of npm (node) and bundler (ruby). It’s super easy to install and use Composer on the Enscale PaaS.

How to Install Composer on your Enscale Server

Connect to your Apache PHP or Nginx PHP node from one of your Enscale environments using the Enscale SSH gateway. Change your working directory to a suitable one of your choice, such as /var/www/webroot:

-bash-4.1$ cd /var/www

Then simply execute the Composer installer as normal:

-bash-4.1$ curl -sS | php

That’s all there is to it! Composer is installed and ready to use. But, we can also make a few little optimisations to make life easier:

-bash-4.1$ mkdir ~/bin
-bash-4.1$ mv ~/composer.phar ~/bin/composer

This does 2 things at once:

  • Renames composer.phar to composer, to save your fingers some work in future
  • Moves composer to a private bin directory which is helpful for the next step

Add Composer to your PATH

This step allows you to effortlessly execute composer from any working directory on the server, without having to write out its full path; otherwise you’d need to write /var/www/bin/composer (or /var/lib/nginx/bin/composer) each time you want to call it!


-bash-4.1$ export PATH=$PATH:/var/www/bin   
-bash-4.1$ echo 'export PATH=$PATH:/var/www/bin' >> ~/.bash_profile


-bash-4.1$ export PATH=$PATH:/var/lib/nginx/bin
-bash-4.1$ echo 'export PATH=$PATH:/var/lib/nginx/bin' >> ~/.bash_profile

Bash offers various startup files. For our purposes, ~/.bash_profile is fine because every SSH login via the gateway is invoked as an interactive login shell; you could equally use ~/.bashrc providing that you also call it from your ~/.bash_profile.

Using Composer

To confirm that the above steps have worked:

-bash-4.1$ composer about
Composer - Package Management for PHP
Composer is a dependency manager tracking local dependencies of your projects and libraries.
See for more information.

Now you can use Composer to manage dependencies within your PHP projects.