• Post last modified:June 15, 2020
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Configuring Organizr to Manage Self-Hosted Applications in a Single Browser Tab

Introduction

If you aren’t familiar with Organizr, it’s a super handy application that manages and consolidates your self-hosted applications into a single tab in your web browser and makes it easier and more convenient to switch back and forth between services as you manage the applications on your server.

In this guide, I’ll be walking you through the basics of installing and setting up an instance of Organizr on Unraid.

If you’re using a different operating system, the installation instructions will differ slightly, but the setup after installation should still be relevant after you’ve installed Organizr on your operating system.

Before We Proceed: External Access

In this guide, I’m going to assume you’ve set up reverse proxies for your self-hosted applications and can access them outside your internal network via your own custom domain or a dynamic DNS service like DuckDNS.

If you’ve chosen not to reverse proxy your applications, it’s okay. When we get to the steps on setting up individual tabs within Organizr, make sure you replace any references to a subdomain with the local IP address and port of the application being referenced (for example, http://192.168.1.111:8989 instead of sonarr.mydomain.com).

Note that if you choose to do this and want to access Organizr and your self-hosted applications externally, you’ll need to set up a VPN or service like WireGuard before you’ll be able to access them – Organizr will not provide this functionality on its own.

What We’ll Need

The only things we’ll need for this guide are a server running an operating system that supports Organizr and at least one self-hosted application up-and-running that you would like to access through Organizr.

Installing Organizr

If you’re installing Organizr on an operating system that isn’t Unraid, the official project’s GitHub page contains instructions on how to install it using Docker.

If you’re using Unraid, navigate to the Community Applications plugin via the “Apps” tab and search for Organizr. There you will find a container called “organizrv2” – click the installation button in the bottom left corner.

After clicking install, a dialogue box will appear asking which branch you would like to install. Unless you know what you’re doing and know what the other branches are, select “Default”, which will automatically install the latest stable branch for you.

On the installation parameters page, add a port number to the “Host Port 1” field to specify a port at which the web UI can be accessed after installation (I’ve randomly chosen 7070) and click “Apply” to install Organizr.

Initial Setup

After installation, there are a few things we’ll need to set up before we can start adding our self-hosted services as tabs. Go ahead and open Organizr’s web UI using your server’s IP address and the port number you assigned the application at installation.

The first menu asks us to select an installation type. Unless you’re a business who needs the ability to hide media items from its users, select “Personal” and hit next.

On the next screen, fill out the user information for your administrator account. Make the username and password as secure as possible, as these are the credentials that will be used to log in to the application (and the login page will be exposed to the internet if you choose to set up a reverse proxy for Organizr).

The next page will ask you for three passwords, with the explanation of what each does in the page description.

  • Set the “Hash Key” to something strong and write it down where no one else will be able to access it
  • The “Registration Password” should be secure but something you can pass along to others should you wish to grant them access to Organizr and your applications
  • Leave the “API Key” as is, as it should be auto-generated (also write this down somewhere secure)

The next screen is going to ask you to name and choose a location for the database Organizr will utilize to store its data. Rename the database to something that will help you identify it in the future. Unless you know what you’re doing, copy the “Suggested Directory” location into the “Database Location” field.

Click “Next”, verify the details you had provided on the previous pages, and click “Finish” to finalize the initial setup.

Organizr Settings

When I initially installed Organizr on my server, I did not find I needed to change any of the system settings found in the following tabs (at the top of the page) to get started:

  • Customize
  • User Management
  • Image Manager
  • Plugins
  • System Settings

This isn’t to say you won’t need to – but I’m not going to cover those particular tabs in this guide because they’re going to be more specific to your own setup. They include features such as single sign-on and user management (which I don’t utilize myself), so I would encourage you to look into them at some point after going through the remainder of the setup below.

We’re going to spend the rest of the time in the “Tab Editor” tab, which is where we’ll customize our homepage and add tabs to access our applications.

If you have any questions about the other settings, feel free to post in the comment section below.

Customizing the Homepage

Now that we’ve finished the initial setup, we can begin customizing Organizr to look the way we want it to.

Click “Tab Editor” in the top menu and you’ll note four sub-tabs that appear:

  • Tabs: Where we’ll eventually configure the individual applications to be accessed within Organizr
  • Categories: Custom categories if you’d like to organize your tabs into categories
  • Homepage Items: Application-specific setup information (login, authorization, access, etc.) that will appear on the homepage when you first log in to Organizr
  • Homepage Order: The order of which “Homepage Items” appear on your homepage

To get started, let’s go ahead and select “Homepage Items”. For every item we’d like to appear on our Organizr’s homepage (Plex “Now Playing” information, active torrents, Ombi requests, media calendar, etc.), we will need to provide Organizr with the application’s credentials in order for it to access the application’s status and details.

For instance, if you’d like information from your Plex server to show on your homepage, click the “Plex” icon under “Homepage Items” and fill out the information requested.

Each application’s setup looks different, but each one will start by asking you for login information and identification (usually under the “Connection” tab) to ensure Organizr can access the application internally on your server. Any subsequent tabs will represent functionality that can be added to your homepage.

In our Plex example, after connecting Plex, we can enabled the ability to display Active Streams, Recent Items, Media Search, and Playlists on our Organizr homepage.

Go ahead and fill out the information and enable the functionality for each application that you’d like to display on your homepage.

Once you’ve set your applications up in the “Homepage Items” tab, navigate to the “Homepage Order” tab to tweak the order in which each application’s functionality will appear on your homepage.

In my example below, I want Plex’s Now Playing streams to appear at the top of my homepage, so I clicked and dragged it to the first slot.

Play around with the different applications and functions until you’re happy with your Organizr’s homepage. When you’re finished, we’ll move on to setting up access to each service within Organizr.

Adding Tabs / Applications

The primary functionality Organizr provides is the ability to add applications that can be accessed via “tabs” on the left side of the screen when logging in.

To add applications/tabs, head into the “Tabs” tab under “Tab Editor”. By default, you’ll notice two tabs have already been created for you: the homepage and settings.

If you added items to your homepage in the previous section, click the button in the “Homepage” row under “Active” to make it green and appear in your list of tabs when you reload the page.

To add a new tab/application, click the blue icon on the right with a white plus sign:

In the “Add New Tab” window that appears, enter the following:

  • Tab Name: Name you would like the tab to show as (for example, “Radarr” or “Movies”)
  • Tab URL: The URL used to access your tab (your subdomain name or http://ipaddress:port)
  • Tab Local URL: Again, the URL used to access your tab (your subdomain name or http://ipaddress:port)
  • Ping URL: Leave blank unless needed
  • Tab Auto Action: I leave as “None”, but you can choose “Auto Reload” or “Auto Close”
  • Tab Auto Action Minutes: Leave as “0” if “None” above
  • Choose Image: Select the icon of the application being added
  • Choose Icon: Skip
  • Tab Image: Will auto-fill based on the image selected above

Click “Add Tab” at the bottom to save your settings and add the tab.

Once you’ve saved the new tab, you’ll notice it has appeared in the list of existing tabs (along with “Homepage” and “Settings”). Hovering over the icon will show an animation that will allow you to drag the tab if you’d like to rearrange the order in which your tabs appear.

From this menu you can also categorize the tab if you choose to create categories under the “Categories” tab, as well as grant access to user levels if you’ve set up multiple users to access the application.

By default, most server applications will load as iFrame, which means they can load within the page without needing to refresh or open a new tab. Not all applications will have the ability to do this – the Organizr Discord and Google will be able to help if you run into any of these applications.

Reload the page to confirm the application is now showing in the left menu and loads when you select it.

If everything worked correctly, go ahead and repeat the process for any additional applications you’d like to access through Organizr.

Accessing Organizr Externally

If you’d like to access Organizr externally, it can be configured using NGINX Proxy Manager similar to other applications – simply add a subdomain in Cloudflare (if you’re using a custom domain) or DuckDNS, and then add a new proxy host in NGINX Proxy Manager and point it to Organizr’s IP address and port.

Conclusion

If you’ve followed these steps correctly, you should have a functioning Organizr setup where you can access most of your server applications from a single tab.

As you’ve seen, Organizr is an extremely powerful application that has a lot to offer. It has more functionality than I am able to cover in a single guide, so I would encourage you to continue digging into its online documentation to discover additional functionality that might further help you manage your applications.

As usual, feel free to leave any questions or comments below.

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