Installation Guide

A CVAT installation guide for different operating systems.

Quick installation guide

Before you can use CVAT, you’ll need to get it installed. The document below contains instructions for the most popular operating systems. If your system is not covered by the document it should be relatively straight forward to adapt the instructions below for other systems.

Probably you need to modify the instructions below in case you are behind a proxy server. Proxy is an advanced topic and it is not covered by the guide.

For access from China, read sources for users from China section.

Ubuntu 18.04 (x86_64/amd64)

  • Open a terminal window. If you don’t know how to open a terminal window on Ubuntu please read the answer.

  • Type commands below into the terminal window to install docker. More instructions can be found here.

    sudo apt-get update
    sudo apt-get --no-install-recommends install -y \
      apt-transport-https \
      ca-certificates \
      curl \
      gnupg-agent \
      software-properties-common
    curl -fsSL https://download.docker.com/linux/ubuntu/gpg | sudo apt-key add -
    sudo add-apt-repository \
      "deb [arch=amd64] https://download.docker.com/linux/ubuntu \
      $(lsb_release -cs) \
      stable"
    sudo apt-get update
    sudo apt-get --no-install-recommends install -y docker-ce docker-ce-cli containerd.io
    
  • Perform post-installation steps to run docker without root permissions.

    sudo groupadd docker
    sudo usermod -aG docker $USER
    

    Log out and log back in (or reboot) so that your group membership is re-evaluated. You can type groups command in a terminal window after that and check if docker group is in its output.

  • Install docker-compose (1.19.0 or newer). Compose is a tool for defining and running multi-container docker applications.

    sudo apt-get --no-install-recommends install -y python3-pip python3-setuptools
    sudo python3 -m pip install setuptools docker-compose
    
  • Clone CVAT source code from the GitHub repository.

    sudo apt-get --no-install-recommends install -y git
    git clone https://github.com/opencv/cvat
    cd cvat
    
  • To access CVAT over a network or through a different system, export CVAT_HOST environment variable

    export CVAT_HOST=your-ip-address
    
  • Run docker containers. It will take some time to download the latest CVAT release and other required images like postgres, redis, etc. from DockerHub and create containers.

    docker-compose up -d
    
  • Alternative: if you want to build the images locally with unreleased changes run the following command. It will take some time to build CVAT images.

    docker-compose -f docker-compose.yml -f docker-compose.dev.yml build
    docker-compose up -d
    
  • You can register a user but by default it will not have rights even to view list of tasks. Thus you should create a superuser. A superuser can use an admin panel to assign correct groups to the user. Please use the command below:

    docker exec -it cvat bash -ic 'python3 ~/manage.py createsuperuser'
    

    Choose a username and a password for your admin account. For more information please read Django documentation.

  • Google Chrome is the only browser which is supported by CVAT. You need to install it as well. Type commands below in a terminal window:

    curl https://dl-ssl.google.com/linux/linux_signing_key.pub | sudo apt-key add -
    sudo sh -c 'echo "deb [arch=amd64] http://dl.google.com/linux/chrome/deb/ stable main" >> /etc/apt/sources.list.d/google-chrome.list'
    sudo apt-get update
    sudo apt-get --no-install-recommends install -y google-chrome-stable
    
  • Open the installed Google Chrome browser and go to localhost:8080. Type your login/password for the superuser on the login page and press the Login button. Now you should be able to create a new annotation task. Please read the CVAT manual for more details.

Windows 10

  • Install WSL2 (Windows subsystem for Linux) refer to this official guide. WSL2 requires Windows 10, version 2004 or higher. Note: You may not have to install a Linux distribution unless needed.

  • Download and install Docker Desktop for Windows. Double-click Docker for Windows Installer to run the installer. More instructions can be found here. Official guide for docker WSL2 backend can be found here. Note: Check that you are specifically using WSL2 backend for Docker.

  • Download and install Git for Windows. When installing the package please keep all options by default. More information about the package can be found here.

  • Download and install Google Chrome. It is the only browser which is supported by CVAT.

  • Go to windows menu, find Git Bash application and run it. You should see a terminal window.

  • Clone CVAT source code from the GitHub repository.

    git clone https://github.com/opencv/cvat
    cd cvat
    
  • Run docker containers. It will take some time to download the latest CVAT release and other required images like postgres, redis, etc. from DockerHub and create containers.

    docker-compose up -d
    
  • Alternative: if you want to build the images locally with unreleased changes run the following command. It will take some time to build CVAT images.

    docker-compose -f docker-compose.yml -f docker-compose.dev.yml build
    docker-compose up -d
    
  • You can register a user but by default it will not have rights even to view list of tasks. Thus you should create a superuser. A superuser can use an admin panel to assign correct groups to other users. Please use the command below:

    winpty docker exec -it cvat bash -ic 'python3 ~/manage.py createsuperuser'
    

    If you don’t have winpty installed or the above command does not work, you may also try the following:

    # enter docker image first
    docker exec -it cvat /bin/bash
    # then run
    python3 ~/manage.py createsuperuser
    

    Choose a username and a password for your admin account. For more information please read Django documentation.

  • Open the installed Google Chrome browser and go to localhost:8080. Type your login/password for the superuser on the login page and press the Login button. Now you should be able to create a new annotation task. Please read the CVAT manual for more details.

Mac OS Mojave

  • Download Docker for Mac. Double-click Docker.dmg to open the installer, then drag Moby the whale to the Applications folder. Double-click Docker.app in the Applications folder to start Docker. More instructions can be found here.

  • There are several ways to install Git on a Mac. The easiest is probably to install the Xcode Command Line Tools. On Mavericks (10.9) or above you can do this simply by trying to run git from the Terminal the very first time.

    git --version
    

    If you don’t have it installed already, it will prompt you to install it. More instructions can be found here.

  • Download and install Google Chrome. It is the only browser which is supported by CVAT.

  • Open a terminal window. The terminal app is in the Utilities folder in Applications. To open it, either open your Applications folder, then open Utilities and double-click on Terminal, or press Command - spacebar to launch Spotlight and type “Terminal,” then double-click the search result.

  • Clone CVAT source code from the GitHub repository.

    git clone https://github.com/opencv/cvat
    cd cvat
    
  • Run docker containers. It will take some time to download the latest CVAT release and other required images like postgres, redis, etc. from DockerHub and create containers.

    docker-compose up -d
    
  • Alternative: if you want to build the images locally with unreleased changes run the following command. It will take some time to build CVAT images.

    docker-compose -f docker-compose.yml -f docker-compose.dev.yml build
    docker-compose up -d
    
  • You can register a user but by default it will not have rights even to view list of tasks. Thus you should create a superuser. A superuser can use an admin panel to assign correct groups to other users. Please use the command below:

    docker exec -it cvat bash -ic 'python3 ~/manage.py createsuperuser'
    

    Choose a username and a password for your admin account. For more information please read Django documentation.

  • Open the installed Google Chrome browser and go to localhost:8080. Type your login/password for the superuser on the login page and press the Login button. Now you should be able to create a new annotation task. Please read the CVAT manual for more details.

Advanced Topics

Deploying CVAT behind a proxy

If you deploy CVAT behind a proxy and do not plan to use any of serverless functions for automatic annotation, the exported environment variables http_proxy, https_proxy and no_proxy should be enough to build images. Otherwise please create or edit the file ~/.docker/config.json in the home directory of the user which starts containers and add JSON such as the following:

{
  "proxies": {
    "default": {
      "httpProxy": "http://proxy_server:port",
      "httpsProxy": "http://proxy_server:port",
      "noProxy": "*.test.example.com,.example2.com"
    }
  }
}

These environment variables are set automatically within any container. Please see the Docker documentation for more details.

Using the Traefik dashboard

If you are customizing the docker compose files and you come upon some unexpected issues, using the Traefik dashboard might be very useful to see if the problem is with Traefik configuration, or with some of the services.

You can enable the Traefik dashboard by uncommenting the following lines from docker-compose.yml

services:
  traefik:
    # Uncomment to get Traefik dashboard
    #   - "--entryPoints.dashboard.address=:8090"
    #   - "--api.dashboard=true"
    # labels:
    #   - traefik.enable=true
    #   - traefik.http.routers.dashboard.entrypoints=dashboard
    #   - traefik.http.routers.dashboard.service=api@internal
    #   - traefik.http.routers.dashboard.rule=Host(`${CVAT_HOST:-localhost}`)

and if you are using docker-compose.https.yml, also uncomment these lines

services:
  traefik:
    command:
      # Uncomment to get Traefik dashboard
      # - "--entryPoints.dashboard.address=:8090"
      # - "--api.dashboard=true"

Note that this “insecure” dashboard is not recommended in production (and if your instance is publicly available); if you want to keep the dashboard in production you should read Traefik’s documentation on how to properly secure it.

Additional components

# Build and run containers with Analytics component support:
docker-compose -f docker-compose.yml \
  -f components/analytics/docker-compose.analytics.yml up -d --build

Semi-automatic and automatic annotation

Please follow this guide.

Stop all containers

The command below stops and removes containers, networks, volumes, and images created by up.

docker-compose down

Use your own domain

If you want to access your instance of CVAT outside of your localhost (on another domain), you should specify the CVAT_HOST environment variable, like this:

export CVAT_HOST=<YOUR_DOMAIN>

Share path

You can use a share storage for data uploading during you are creating a task. To do that you can mount it to CVAT docker container. Example of docker-compose.override.yml for this purpose:

version: '3.3'

services:
  cvat:
    environment:
      CVAT_SHARE_URL: 'Mounted from /mnt/share host directory'
    volumes:
      - cvat_share:/home/django/share:ro

volumes:
  cvat_share:
    driver_opts:
      type: none
      device: /mnt/share
      o: bind

You can change the share device path to your actual share. For user convenience we have defined the environment variable $CVAT_SHARE_URL. This variable contains a text (url for example) which is shown in the client-share browser.

You can mount your cloud storage as a FUSE and use it later as a share.

Email verification

You can enable email verification for newly registered users. Specify these options in the settings file to configure Django allauth to enable email verification (ACCOUNT_EMAIL_VERIFICATION = ‘mandatory’). Access is denied until the user’s email address is verified.

ACCOUNT_AUTHENTICATION_METHOD = 'username'
ACCOUNT_CONFIRM_EMAIL_ON_GET = True
ACCOUNT_EMAIL_REQUIRED = True
ACCOUNT_EMAIL_VERIFICATION = 'mandatory'

# Email backend settings for Django
EMAIL_BACKEND = 'django.core.mail.backends.smtp.EmailBackend'

Also you need to configure the Django email backend to send emails. This depends on the email server you are using and is not covered in this tutorial, please see Django SMTP backend configuration for details.

Deploy CVAT on the Scaleway public cloud

Please follow this tutorial to install and set up remote access to CVAT on a Scaleway cloud instance with data in a mounted object storage bucket.

Deploy secure CVAT instance with HTTPS

Using Traefik, you can automatically obtain TLS certificate for your domain from Let’s Encrypt, enabling you to use HTTPS protocol to access your website.

To enable this, first set the the CVAT_HOST (the domain of your website) and ACME_EMAIL (contact email for Let’s Encrypt) environment variables:

export CVAT_HOST=<YOUR_DOMAIN>
export ACME_EMAIL=<YOUR_EMAIL>

Then, use the docker-compose.https.yml file to override the base docker-compose.yml file:

docker-compose -f docker-compose.yml -f docker-compose.https.yml up -d

Then, the CVAT instance will be available at your domain on ports 443 (HTTPS) and 80 (HTTP, redirects to 443).

Sources for users from China

If you stay in China, for installation you need to override the following sources.

  • For use apt update using:

    Ubuntu mirroring help

    Pre-compiled packages:

    deb https://mirrors.tuna.tsinghua.edu.cn/ubuntu/ focal main restricted universe multiverse
    deb https://mirrors.tuna.tsinghua.edu.cn/ubuntu/ focal-updates main restricted universe multiverse
    deb https://mirrors.tuna.tsinghua.edu.cn/ubuntu/ focal-backports main restricted universe multiverse
    deb https://mirrors.tuna.tsinghua.edu.cn/ubuntu/ focal-security main restricted universe multiverse
    

    Or source packages:

    deb-src https://mirrors.tuna.tsinghua.edu.cn/ubuntu/ focal main restricted universe multiverse
    deb-src https://mirrors.tuna.tsinghua.edu.cn/ubuntu/ focal-updates main restricted universe multiverse
    deb-src https://mirrors.tuna.tsinghua.edu.cn/ubuntu/ focal-backports main restricted universe multiverse
    deb-src https://mirrors.tuna.tsinghua.edu.cn/ubuntu/ focal-security main restricted universe multiverse
    
  • Docker mirror station

    Add registry mirrors into daemon.json file:

    {
        "registry-mirrors": [
            "http://f1361db2.m.daocloud.io",
            "https://docker.mirrors.ustc.edu.cn",
            "https://hub-mirror.c.163.com",
            "https://https://mirror.ccs.tencentyun.com",
            "https://mirror.ccs.tencentyun.com",
        ]
    }
    
  • For using pip:

    PyPI mirroring help

    pip config set global.index-url https://pypi.tuna.tsinghua.edu.cn/simple
    
  • For using npm:

    npm mirroring help

    npm config set registry https://registry.npm.taobao.org/
    
  • Instead of git using gitee:

    CVAT repository on gitee.com

  • For replace acceleration source docker.com run:

    curl -fsSL https://download.docker.com/linux/ubuntu/gpg | sudo apt-key add -
    sudo add-apt-repository \
      "deb [arch=amd64] https://download.docker.com/linux/ubuntu \
      $(lsb_release -cs) \
    
  • For replace acceleration source google.com run:

    curl https://dl-ssl.google.com/linux/linux_signing_key.pub | sudo apt-key add -