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Running PhotoPrism on a Raspberry Pi

Our stable version and development preview have been built into a single multi-arch Docker image for 64-bit AMD, Intel, and ARM processors.

As a result, Raspberry Pi 3 / 4, Apple Silicon, and other ARM64-based devices can pull from the same repository, enjoy the same functionality, and can follow the regular installation instructions after going through a short list of system requirements.

PhotoPrismPi

The easiest way to run PhotoPrism on a Raspberry Pi is with PhotoPrismPi.1 Simply flash the image to an SD card, plug it into the Pi and boot it. After a few minutes, our latest release will be ready to use!

System Requirements

  • Your device should have at least 3 GB of physical memory and a 64-bit operating system
  • While PhotoPrism has been reported to work on devices with less memory, we take no responsibility for instability or performance problems
  • RAW image conversion and TensorFlow are disabled on systems with 1 GB or less memory
  • Indexing large photo and video collections significantly benefits from local SSD storage and plenty of memory for caching, especially the conversion of RAW images and the transcoding of videos are very demanding
  • If less than 4 GB of swap space is configured or a manual memory/swap limit is set, this can cause unexpected restarts, for example, when the indexer temporarily needs more memory to process large files
  • High-resolution panoramic images may require additional swap space and/or physical memory above the recommended minimum
  • We recommend disabling kernel security in your docker-compose.yml, especially if you do not have experience with the configuration:
    photoprism:
      security_opt:
        - seccomp:unconfined
        - apparmor:unconfined
    
  • If you install PhotoPrism on a public server outside your home network, always run it behind a secure HTTPS reverse proxy such as Traefik or Caddy

Architecture Specific Notes

Modern ARM64-based Devices

Image Name
Stable Release photoprism/photoprism:latest
Development Preview photoprism/photoprism:preview
MariaDB arm64v8/mariadb:10.9

Running 64-bit Docker images under Raspbian Linux requires a minimum of technical experience to perform the necessary configuration changes. This is because it is a 32-bit operating system with merely a 64-bit kernel to ensure compatibility with legacy software. If you don't need compatibility with 32-bit apps, we recommend choosing a standard 64-bit Linux distribution instead as it will save you time and requires less experience:

Other distributions that target the same use case as Raspbian, such as CoreELEC, will have similar issues and should therefore also be avoided to run modern server applications.

Raspberry Pi OS

To ensure compatibility with 64-bit Docker images, your Raspberry Pi 3 / 4 must boot with the arm_64bit=1 flag in its config.txt file. An "exec format" error will occur otherwise.

Try explicitly pulling the ARM64 version if you've booted your device with the arm_64bit=1 flag and you see the "no matching manifest" error on Raspberry Pi OS (Raspbian):

docker pull --platform=arm64 photoprism/photoprism:latest

It may also help to set the DOCKER_DEFAULT_PLATFORM environment variable to linux/arm64.

In case you see Docker errors related to "cgroups", try adding the following parameters to /boot/firmware/cmdline.txt or /boot/cmdline.txt (file location depends on the OS in use):

cgroup_enable=cpuset cgroup_enable=memory cgroup_memory=1

Older ARMv7-based Devices

You may use the following 32-bit Docker images to run PhotoPrism and MariaDB on ARMv7-based devices (always use our ARM64 image if possible):

Image Name
Stable Release photoprism/photoprism:armv7
Development Preview photoprism/photoprism:preview-armv7
MariaDB linuxserver/mariadb:latest

If your device meets the requirements, mostly the same installation instructions as for regular Linux servers apply. Please pay close attention to changed directory and environment variable names.

Darktable is not included in the ARMv7 image because it is not 32-bit compatible. Always choose the regular 64-bit version if your device supports it.

Is a Raspberry Pi fast enough?

This largely depends on your expectations and the number of files you have. Most users report that PhotoPrism runs smoothly on their Raspberry Pi 4. However, initial indexing typically takes much longer than on standard desktop computers.

Also keep in mind that the hardware has limited video transcoding capabilities, so the conversion of video file formats is not well-supported and software transcoding is generally slow.

Getting Updates

Open a terminal and change to the folder where the docker-compose.yml file is located.2 Now run the following commands to download the most recent image from Docker Hub and restart your instance in the background:

docker compose pull
docker compose stop
docker compose up -d

Pulling a new version can take several minutes, depending on your internet connection speed.

Advanced users can add this to a Makefile so that they only have to type a single command like make update. See Command-Line Interface to learn more about terminal commands.

Even when you use an image with the :latest tag, Docker does not automatically download new images for you. You can either manually upgrade as shown above, or set up a service like Watchtower to get automatic updates.

Config Examples

We recommend that you compare your own docker-compose.yml with our latest examples from time to time, as they may include new config options or other enhancements relevant to you.

MariaDB Server

Our config examples are generally based on the latest stable release to take advantage of performance enhancements. This does not mean older versions are no longer supported and you have to upgrade immediately.

If MariaDB fails to start after upgrading from an earlier version (or migrating from MySQL), the internal management schema may be outdated. See Troubleshooting MariaDB Problems for instructions on how to fix this.

Troubleshooting

If your device runs out of memory, the index is frequently locked, or other system resources are running low:

Other issues? Our troubleshooting checklists help you quickly diagnose and solve them.

You are welcome to ask for help in our community chat. Sponsors receive direct technical support via email. Before submitting a support request, try to determine the cause of your problem.

Credits


  1. A big thank you to Guy Sheffer for helping us build a Raspberry Pi version! 

  2. The default Docker Compose config filename is docker-compose.yml. For simplicity, it doesn't need to be specified when running the docker-compose command in the same directory. Config files for other apps or instances should be placed in separate folders.