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2.1.2 • Public • Published

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Parse Server is an open source version of the Parse backend that can be deployed to any infrastructure that can run Node.js.

Parse Server works with the Express web application framework. It can be added to existing web applications, or run by itself.

Getting Started

We have provided a basic Node.js application that uses the Parse Server module on Express and can be easily deployed using any of the following buttons:

Parse Server + Express

You can also create an instance of Parse Server, and mount it on a new or existing Express website:

var express = require('express');
var ParseServer = require('parse-server').ParseServer;
var app = express();
// Specify the connection string for your mongodb database
// and the location to your Parse cloud code
var api = new ParseServer({
  databaseURI: 'mongodb://localhost:27017/dev',
  cloud: '/home/myApp/cloud/main.js', // Provide an absolute path
  appId: 'myAppId',
  masterKey: 'myMasterKey', // Keep this key secret!
  fileKey: 'optionalFileKey',
  serverURL: 'http://localhost:1337/parse' // Don't forget to change to https if needed
// Serve the Parse API on the /parse URL prefix
app.use('/parse', api);
app.listen(1337, function() {
  console.log('parse-server-example running on port 1337.');

Standalone Parse Server

Parse Server can also run as a standalone API server. The standalone Parse Server can be configured using environment variables. To start the server, just run npm start.

You can also install Parse Server globally:

$ npm install -g parse-server

Now you can just run $ parse-server from your command line.


The full documentation for Parse Server is available in the wiki. The Parse Server guide is a good place to get started. If you're interested in developing for Parse Server, the Development guide will help you get set up.

Migrating an Existing Parse App

The hosted version of Parse will be fully retired on January 28th, 2017. If you are planning to migrate an app, you need to begin work as soon as possible. There are a few areas where Parse Server does not provide compatibility with the hosted version of Parse. Learn more in the Migration guide.


The following options can be passed to the ParseServer object during initialization. Alternatively, you can use the PARSE_SERVER_OPTIONS environment variable set to the JSON of your configuration.

Basic options

  • databaseURI (required) - The connection string for your database, i.e. mongodb://
  • appId (required) - The application id to host with this server instance
  • masterKey (required) - The master key to use for overriding ACL security
  • cloud - The absolute path to your cloud code main.js file
  • fileKey - For migrated apps, this is necessary to provide access to files already hosted on Parse.
  • facebookAppIds - An array of valid Facebook application IDs.
  • serverURL - URL which will be used by Cloud Code functions to make requests against.
  • push - Configuration options for APNS and GCM push. See the wiki entry.

Client key options

The client keys used with Parse are no longer necessary with Parse Server. If you wish to still require them, perhaps to be able to refuse access to older clients, you can set the keys at initialization time. Setting any of these keys will require all requests to provide one of the configured keys.

  • clientKey
  • javascriptKey
  • restAPIKey
  • dotNetKey

Advanced options

  • filesAdapter - The default behavior (GridStore) can be changed by creating an adapter class (see FilesAdapter.js)
  • databaseAdapter (unfinished) - The backing store can be changed by creating an adapter class (see DatabaseAdapter.js)
  • loggerAdapter - The default behavior/transport (File) can be changed by creating an adapter class (see LoggerAdapter.js)
  • enableAnonymousUsers - Defaults to true. Set to false to disable anonymous users.
  • oauth - Used to configure support for 3rd party authentication.

Using environment variables

You may also configure the Parse Server using environment variables:

PARSE_SERVER_FACEBOOK_APP_IDS // string of comma separated list


We really want Parse to be yours, to see it grow and thrive in the open source community. Please see the Contributing to Parse Server guide.




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