TinaCMS is Now Fully Open-Source

November 20, 2023

By James O'Halloran

TL;DR TinaCMS is now fully open-source and easier to self-host. We also built a Next.js + TinaCMS demo site that can be hosted entirely on Vercel.

Earlier this year, we released the first iteration of the self-hosted TinaCMS backend. The initial demo relied on Tina Cloud for auth and used MongoDB for the Data Layer. That was the first step in helping our users avoid vendor lock-in, but there were limitations, such as requiring a custom auth implementation when not using Tina Cloud and requiring MongoDB for the Data Layer.

We initially released the self-hosted backend under a "source available" license. While this was a very permissive license, we still want developers to feel comfortable building on TinaCMS without fearing that they'll hit a ceiling.

We're excited to announce that TinaCMS's Self-hosted Backend is now open-source, under the Apache 2.0 license!

Fully self-host TinaCMS on Vercel

To test self-hosting TinaCMS independently of Tina Cloud, we put together a demo site leveraging Vercel KV for the Data Layer and a built-in auth solution based on Auth.js. This example demonstrates a fully functioning Next.js site running TinaCMS relying only on GitHub and Vercel.

Try it out with our NextJS starter:

Does self-hosted TinaCMS require Next.js / Vercel?

While our self-hosted Next.js demo provides an easy way to get started on Vercel, self-hosted Tina does not require Vercel and can be used with any framework that is supported by Tina. The main consideration when self-hosting is the backend API which provides the GraphQL and auth endpoints. The backend API can be hosted on any platform that supports Express request handlers, including AWS, Google Cloud, and Netlify.

Is self-hosted TinaCMS open-source?

Yes, TinaCMS is now fully open-source under the Apache 2.0 license.

Future Plans

Repo-based media is not currently available for self-hosted TinaCMS. We currently recommend one of our other media manager solutions when self-hosting, such as Cloudinary, AWS S3 or Digital Oceans. This is something that we are exploring and hope to make available. Additionally our search capability currently requires Tina Cloud but is something we expect to add soon to self-hosting.

Getting Started

Visit the self-hosted docs and click the Deploy button to launch the self-hosted starter template on Vercel.

Last Edited: November 20, 2023