Listening on port 80 w/o root

It’s a general rule that you should not run node as root. However only root can bind to ports less than 1024. This is where authbind comes in. Authbind allows non-root users to bind to ports less than 1024. Replace %user% with the user that will be running pm2.

sudo apt-get install authbind
sudo touch /etc/authbind/byport/80
sudo chown %user% /etc/authbind/byport/80
sudo chmod 755 /etc/authbind/byport/80

You should also add an alias to the user that runs pm2 profile, e.g. ~/.bashrc or ~/.zshrc (note you will need to run source ~/.bashrc or source ~/.zshrc immediately after):

+alias pm2='authbind --deep pm2'

Finally ensure that pm2 is updated with authbind:

authbind --deep pm2 update

Or simply pm2 update if you added the alias to your user’s profile.

Now you can start applications using PM2 that can bind to port 80 without being root!

Multiple PM2 on the same server

The client and daemon communicate via socket files available in $HOME/.pm2/pub.sock and $HOME/.pm2/rpc.sock.

You can start multiple PM2 instances by changing the PM2_HOME environment variable.

PM2_HOME='.pm2' pm2 start echo.js --name="echo-node-1"
PM2_HOME='.pm3' pm2 start echo.js --name="echo-node-2"

This will start two different PM2 instances. To list processes managed by each different instances do:

PM2_HOME='.pm2' pm2 list
PM2_HOME='.pm3' pm2 list

Launch PM2 in no deamon

Make sure you kill any PM2 instance before starting PM2 in no deamon mode (pm2 kill).

Launching PM2 without daemonizing itself:

pm2 start app.js --no-daemon

There is also the CLI pm2-runtime installed by default at PM2 installation, that is a drop-in replacement of the Node.js binary.

Stateless apps

It is a general rule that your production application should be stateless. Every data, states, websocket session, session data, must be shared via any kind of database or PUB/SUB system.

If not, your application will be painfull to scale on the same server and accross multiple servers.

For example you could use connect-redis to share sessions.

We also recommend you to follow the 12 factor convention: http://12factor.net/

Setup pm2 on a server

How To Use pm2 to Setup a Node.js Production Environment On An Ubuntu VPS.

Log and PID files

By default, logs (error and output), pid files, dumps, and PM2 logs are located in ~/.pm2/:

├── dump.pm2
├── custom_options.sh
├── pm2.log
├── pm2.pid
├── logs
└── pids

Enabling Harmony ES6

The --node-args option allows the addition of arguments to the node interpreter. To enable harmony for a process type the following command:

pm2 start my_app.js --node-args="--harmony"

And within a JSON declaration:

  "name" : "ES6",
  "script" : "es6.js",
  "node_args" : "--harmony"


pm2 start server.coffee --interpreter coffee

That’s all!

Piping JSON



read -d '' my_json <<_EOF_
    "name"       : "app1",
    "script"     : "/home/projects/pm2_nodetest/app.js",
    "instances"  : "4",
    "error_file" : "./logz/child-err.log",
    "out_file"   : "./logz/child-out.log",
    "pid_file"   : "./logz/child.pid",
    "exec_mode"  : "cluster_mode",
    "port"       : 4200

echo $my_json | pm2 start -

Process title

You can specify the env variable PROCESS_FILE when start an application with PM2, it will be set a process title. It pretty useful when trying to get specific data from the process, for example you can use ps -fC name.


Refer to Using transpilers with PM2 tutorial.

User tips from issues

External resources and articles