Self-Hosting CommCare

The open source digital platform CommCare enables frontline organizations to build their own custom, permanent solutions on a professionally managed foundation - at any scale, anywhere. CommCare was originally developed by Dimagi, and today has evolved into being one of the most widely deployed Global Goods in existence. 

Thousands of governments and organizations run their CommCare applications as a cloud-hosted, SaaS solution on Dimagi’s servers. This is by far the most popular for organizations using CommCare. While there are definitive benefits to hosting CommCare via the cloud, certain organizations or governments may opt to run CommCare on their own self-hosted or administered server. This may be due to a variety of reasons, including an organization’s policies or regulations.

This page provides an overview of hosting options available to organizations.

CommCare Hosting Options

The diagram below shows the three options for CommCare Hosting.

Dimagi SaaS Hosting (Most Popular)

Most popular, requires least technical expertise and set up

CommCare HQ is a sophisticated, distributed software application, made up of dozens of processes and several pieces of third-party open source database software. It has been built for performance, reliability, security, and scale rather than simplicity. The vast majority of CommCare deployments use the global CommCare Cloud hosted instances of CommCare HQ via Dimagi’s Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) model. This approach removes the need for the project to manage its own CommCare instance and also guarantees service availability and access to the latest platform features and security compliance with HIPAA and SOC-2. You can read more about the security and privacy standards offered by CommCare as a cloud-hosted solution at Data Security.

As shared above, the vast majority of organizations select this option due to the ease of convenience and total cost of ownership of not running servers, etc. If you are interested in signing up for a Dimagi-hosted instance of CommCare, please visit our Software Pricing:

Hybrid Hosting

Good option for organizations with specialized hosting requirements, while realizing benefits of CommCare.

Hybrid Hosting realizes the benefits of CommCare’s secure, stable and scalable platform while also permanently storing data in-country on a designated data storage server. Hybrid Hosting uses a cloud-based project space for application building, user management, synchronization and integration, while using the open-source CommCare Sync tool to keep data synchronized to an in-country database which acts as a primary data store.

You can read more about Hybrid Hosting in this linked document.

https://docs.google.com/document/d/1CX4VJeJkuA0VTPrYyRZZBnkDp6XRLMUDxdNHsLBVCns/edit#heading=h.x2ro0b4phek9

Below are some additional resources that are used in Hybrid Hosting:

On-Premise Hosting

Requires most amount of technical expertise, set-up

Numerous organizations and governments have successfully transitioned their CommCare applications from being hosted by Dimagi’s SaaS platform to an independently hosted instance of CommCare, without any required support from Dimagi.

As a note, Dimagi does not provide direct support to partners transitioning to on premise instances of CommCare. While Dimagi does not offer direct support in setting up an independent instance, we encourage you to follow these instructions yourself or in collaboration with a Managed Service Provider.

Below is guidance for organizations that are interested in transitioning their hosting to on-premise.

Transition Your CommCare Infrastructure

Dimagi has developed this guide (Transition to On Premise Hosted CommCare) to support interested organizations in transitioning their cloud-hosted CommCare applications to self-hosted and administered servers. This is written specifically for organizations who are either directly overseeing the transition between environments or are supporting a third-party (often a government). 

CommCare Cloud is Dimagi's self-hosting toolkit for deploying and maintaining CommCare servers. Below are helpful resources for utilizing CommCare Cloud: