In this guide, you will use DigitalOcean’s administrative panel to create an Ubuntu 20.04 server and configure it to work with your SSH keys. Once your server is up and running, you can use it to deploy apps and websites.
This tutorial is a part of the Introduction to the Cloud Curriculum, which walks users through the entire process of securely deploying an application to the cloud. If you are looking for general DigitalOcean Droplet documentation, please see our product documentation How to Create a Droplet from the DigitalOcean Control Panel.
Before you begin this guide, you’ll need the following:
- Some familiarity with the command line. If you’d like an introduction or refresher to the command line, you can visit our Linux Command Line Primer.
- SSH keys to enable a secure connection with your server. To set up SSH keys via the command line, you can follow our guide How to Set Up SSH Keys on Ubuntu 20.04.
- A credit card or PayPal account to set up a DigitalOcean Droplet. Note that the smallest Droplet offering can be used for this tutorial, whose monthly subscription fee is available on our Pricing page. Users can cancel their Droplet service at any time.
Step 1 — Creating a DigitalOcean account
To access the DigitalOcean Control Panel and create a Droplet, you need a DigitalOcean account. To create a new account, navigate to the DigitalOcean new account registration page. You can choose to register through email, Google, or GitHub.
After you’ve confirmed your account, you will need to enter your credit card or Paypal information. This information is collected to verify identity and keep spammers out. You will not be charged until you choose a plan and confirm your subscription, which we will cover in Step 4. You may see a temporary pre-authorization charge to verify the card, which will be reversed within a week.
Once your information has been accepted, you will be taken to a window that says “Registration Complete”. You are now ready to proceed to the next step.
Step 2 — Setting Up Your Droplet
In the previous step, you should have been taken to a window that says “Registration Complete” with a “Let’s make something” button. Click on the “Let’s make something” button. The next window will display buttons for different Droplet options. Click on the “Go to Control Panel” link at the bottom:
Once you click on the “Go to Control Panel” link, you will be taken to the control panel: