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example workflow

API Documentation

CLI Reference

Want to build from source? See
Want to deploy using Docker? See

Installation Instructions

Video Guide

Note: .debs for the Session Open Group server are currently only available for Ubuntu 20.04.
For other operating systems, you can either build from source or use Docker.

Step 1: Pull in the Session open group server executable:

sudo curl -so /etc/apt/trusted.gpg.d/oxen.gpg
echo "deb $(lsb_release -sc) main" | sudo tee /etc/apt/sources.list.d/oxen.list
sudo apt update
sudo apt install session-open-group-server
sudo chown _loki /var/lib/session-open-group-server -R

Step 2: Add a room

Add a room of your choice with the following command:

session-open-group-server --add-room {room_id} {room_name}

room_id must be lowercase and consist of only letters, numbers and underscores.

For example:

session-open-group-server --add-room fish FishingAustralia

Step 3: Print your server's URL

Print the URL users can use to join rooms on your open group server by running:

session-open-group-server --print-url

This will output a result similar to:


You will need to replace [host_name_or_ip] with the IP address of your VPS or the domain mapping to your IP address, and [room_id] with the ID of one of the rooms you created earlier.

For example:

This URL can then be used to join the group inside the Session app.

Step 4: Make yourself a moderator

Make yourself a moderator using the following command:

session-open-group-server --add-moderator {your_session_id} {room_id}

For example:

session-open-group-server --add-moderator 05d871fc80ca007eed9b2f4df72853e2a2d5465a92fcb1889fb5c84aa2833b3b40 fish

Step 5: Add an image for your new room (Optional)

  • Add your room on Session desktop using the URL printed earlier
  • Use Session desktop to upload a picture for your room


  • Upload a JPG to your VPS
  • Put it in /var/lib/session-open-group-server/files
  • Rename it to {room_id} (no file extension)


The default options the Session open group server runs with should be fine in most cases, but if you like you can run on a custom port or host, specify the path to the X25519 key pair you want to use, etc. To do this, simply add the right arguments to the ExecStart line in your systemd service file (normally located under /etc/systemd/system) and restart your service using:

systemctl restart session-open-group-server.service