Deploy Modmail on Railway PaaS.

What is Railway?

Railway is a deployment platform where you can provision infrastructure, develop with that infrastructure locally, and then deploy to the cloud.



Railway provides a free "Starter" plan. This plan allows you to try out their platform for free without requiring a credit card*. Your bot will be online for 10 days after signing up.

To keep your bot running 24/7, you'll need to sign up for their "Developer" plan. This plan is also free, but you will need to verify using your credit card, as it's to prevent abuse on their systems.

*Credit card may be required for some users.

Fork our GitHub repositories

You will need to fork our repositories to deploy onto Railway.

Make sure you're logged in to GitHub. You will need to fork two repositories.

First we fork the Modmail repository. Head over to https://github.com/modmail-dev/modmail/fork, leave all the settings as default, and click Create fork.

Next do the same for the Logviewer repository by heading over to https://github.com/modmail-dev/logviewer/fork, leave all the settings as default, and click Create fork.

Next, to keep your Modmail and Logviewer up to date, you will need to install the Pull app. Simply head over to https://github.com/apps/pull, click Install, choose Only select repositories, then select both the Modmail and Logviewer repositories that you forked in the previous step.

Your GitHub should now be all set. Next step, create a Railway account to deploy your bot.

Create a Railway account

Head over to Railway's website and create an account. It will ask you to create a new project, choose Deploy from GitHub repo. Then, you will be asked to connect your GitHub account.

Why does it says "Your Account is Unverified"?

If your GitHub account is new or not reputable, you may be asked to verify your identify.

This unfortunately means that you will have to provide a credit card for verification. Click Verify Account, read and accept Railway's Terms of Service, then enter your credit card details. You may be temporary charged $1 USD to confirm the legitimacy of the card.

Next, you will be asked to Configure a GitHub App. You will be directed to the GitHub authentication page. Choose Only select repositories, then select both the Modmail and Logviewer repositories, as you have done before. Finally, click Install & Authorize.

The next step is to deploy Modmail onto Railway. This is split into two parts. You will need to complete both parts to fully Modmail.

Part 1: Deploying the Logviewer

From the New Project page, create the project by selecting your Logviewer repository, then select Add variables.

Click New Variable, set left to be CONNECTION_URI, then on the right, paste your revised MongoDB connection string from your Notepad (if this is new to you, go back and read the initial steps).

Don't add any other variables, nor use the suggested variables section. You should see a new variable named CONNECTION_URI added under variables once you're done.

Next, go to the Deployments tab, look at the latest deployment, is it successful? You may need to wait up to 10 minutes. If you click the URL, you should be taken to your Logviewer homepage (see screenshot below). Save this URL into your Notepad as we will need it for the next step, we will be referring to this as your Logviewer URL.

Part 2: Deploying the Modmail bot

From the New Project page, create the project by selecting your Modmail repository, then select Add variables.

Click New Variable. We will be adding 5 variables in total, so repeat this step until you've added all 5 variables.

Variable Name (left)Variable Value (right)Example


The MongoDB Connection string from your Notepad.



The Discord bot token from your Notepad.



The Logviewer URL from your Notepad. Remember to add https:// in front!



Your Discord ID. If you have multiple owners, separate your IDs with a comma.



The ID of the Discord server for your Modmail bot.


Do you have a separate staff server?

If you manage a large server where you have a separate server for communication among your moderation team, Modmail supports directing threads into the staff server instead of your main (public) server.

Simply add an additional variable named MODMAIL_GUILD_ID and set the value to your staff server's ID.

Note: the GUILD_ID should always be your main server's ID (not staff server's).

If you haven't yet invited your Modmail bot to your staff server, see the invite section.

Complete the setup

Within 10 minutes of saving the Modmail bot variables, your Modmail bot should come online in your server. The default prefix for Modmail is ?. You need to run ?setup within your server to complete the setup. If you configured Modmail to use a separate staff server, you must run this command in your staff server. This will create a category for your Modmail threads and a Logs channel for an archive of all past threads.

Help! My bot hasn't started after 10 minutes.

This probably means you've failed to follow one or more steps. [more info TODO]

How to keep your bot running 24/7

You have 10 days to test Modmail without upgrading to the "Developer" plan. As mentioned in the costs section, Railway's Developer plan provides enough free monthly credits to run Modmail for free 24/7 everyday. However, you will need to provide your credit card details to upgrade your plan. More details can be found here.

Usage-based subscription

Head over to the **** Billing Details page, click the Unlock button to unlock Developer plan. Then input your credit card details and hit Subscribe to Developer Plan.

Subscribing to the Developer plan under usage based subscription may incur you unexpected charges. This because Railway does not provide any safe-guards or monthly spending limits. Average Modmail and Logviewer usage should be well below the free threshold. However, if you run resource-intensive code via plugins or due to other means, you credit card may be billed.

If you want to guarantee that your credit card won't get charged for whatever reason, check out the credit-based subscription model instead. Alternatively, you can use a virtual credit card, such as privacy.com, to verify for the Developer plan.

Why was I charged $1.00 USD?

This should be a temporary charge to verify that your credit card works as expected. Railway explains this with:

A temporary hold of $1.00 USD will be placed on the card and then refunded immediately.

Credit-based subscription (alternative subscription model)

If you rather pay a one-time $5.00 USD non-refundable credit purchase instead of permanently linking your credit card, you can choose to use the credit-based subscription model. As long as you have a non-zero credit balance (which should be forever since the monthly operating cost for Modmail is $0.00), you will be continuously subscribed to the Developer plan.

There you go! Your bot should now be able to run 24/7 without interruptions. Head over to the Usage page to make sure you won't be charged. Add up the estimated price for both your projects and verify that they're well below $5.00 USD.

How do I cancel my Developer plan subscription?

If you're subscribed under the usage-based subscription model, you can cancel your subscription by heading to the **** Billing Details page, click Manage Subscription, then click Cancel plan.


Railway is configured to automatically update your Modmail bot and Logviewer whenever new updates become available.

How do I disable auto-updates?

Next steps

Now that you've successfully set up Modmail, visit the Getting Started page to find information on using Modmail.

You can also join our Discord Server to interact with our community or get support for Modmail.

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