Etherpad (previously known as “etherpad-lite”) is installed on to facilitate real-time collaboration on documents. It is used extensively during OpenStack Developer Summits.

At a Glance



Apache is configured as a reverse proxy and there is a MySQL database backend.

Manual Administrative Tasks

The following sections describe tasks that individuals with root access may need to perform on rare occasions.

Deleting a Pad

On occasion it may be necessary to delete a pad, so as to redact sensitive or illegal data posted to it (the revision history it keeps makes this harder than just clearing the current contents through a browser). This is fairly easily accomplished via the HTTP API, but you need the key which is saved in a file on the server so it’s easiest if done when SSH’d into it locally:

wget -qO- "http://localhost:9001/api/1/deletePad?apikey=$(sudo \
docker-compose -f /etc/etherpad-docker/docker-compose.yaml exec etherpad \
cat /opt/etherpad-lite/APIKEY.txt)&padID=XXXXXXXXXX" ; echo

…where XXXXXXXXXX is the pad’s name as it appears at the end of its URL (the trailing echo is just because the API response doesn’t end with a newline and so your next appended shell prompt makes it harder to read). If all goes well, you should receive a response like:


Browse to the original pad’s URL and you should now see the fresh welcome message boilerplate for a new pad. Check the pad’s history and note that it has no authors and no prior revisions.

Restoring a Pad

It also happens that the content of a pad gets overwritten with the wrong content, one common example is someone using a translation tool on it, not being aware that this changes the document for everyone instead of just locally. Via the revision slider you can identify the last good version and then restore it via the API:

wget -qO- "http://localhost:9001/api/1.2.11/restoreRevision?apikey=$(sudo \
docker-compose -f /etc/etherpad-docker/docker-compose.yaml exec etherpad \
cat /opt/etherpad-lite/APIKEY.txt)&padID=XXXXXXXXXX&rev=NNN" ; echo