Deploy flask app to Heroku

Gaurav Bhardwaj
Gaurav Bhardwaj
Published on
#flask#python
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Flask is a micro web framework written in Python, released in April 2010, and is developed by Armin Ronacher. Heroku is a cloud platform that allows developers to deploy their apps online free of cost. This article contains step-by-step instructions to walk you through deploying your flask app to Heroku.

1. Prerequisites

The basic requirements for getting started with the deployment is:

Installing Python

Installing Git (Best for Source Code & Version Control Management)

– Signup for an account of Heroku:

You can create an account on Heroku by referring to the https://signup.heroku.com/ link.



Deploy flask app to Heroku - Signup on Heroku

 

2. Installing Heroku CLI

You can configure almost everything from Heroku GUI but It’s preferred to install Heroku CLI since it is highly flexible.

If you are using macOS, install Heroku via brew.

brew tap heroku/brew && brew install heroku

For Linux, you can install it by executing the below command.

curl https://cli-assets.heroku.com/install.sh | sh

You can refer to the below guide for more information on the Installation of Heroku CLI.

Installing Heroku CLI – macOS, Windows, and Linux

3. Creating Flask application

Let’s create a minimal flask application following the below steps.

Create Flask Working Directory

Create a directory of flask:



mkdir <app_name>

cd <app_name>

Creating a Virtual Environment

You can create a python virtual environment by executing the below command.

python -m venv venv

If you are on Linux/Mac you can execute the below command for activating your virtual environment.

source /venv/bin/activate

For Windows, you can execute the below command:

venv\Scripts\activate.bat

Deploy flask app to Heroku - Activating Virtual Environment

Installing flask, requests, and Gunicorn



Since we have created a virtual environment, now we will proceed ahead with the installation of the flask package.

Since we also need Gunicorn (Green Unicorn) which is a Web Server Gateway Interface (WSGI) primarily used to run flask applications.

pip install flask request gunicorn

Do you know?

Flask has a built-in web server but it’s not suitable for production. A real web server is able to communicate with Flask application via WSGI (Web Server Gateway Interface) and Gunicorn is a common choice.

Deploy flask app to Heroku - Installing Dependencies

Writing Flask app

Since we have all the dependencies installed to get started writing our flask application. Let’s start with creating a new file – say main.py.

Let’s add the following contents.

from flask import Flask
app = Flask(__name__)
 
@app.route('/')
def index():
  return '<h1>Hello World</h1>'

if __name__ == "__main__":
    app.run(debug=True, port=5000)

Running flask application

You can locally test your application by running the following command.

python main.py

Local Test

4. Preparing to Deploy flask app to Heroku

Our flask application is ready now we just need to deploy it to Heroku.

Creating requirements.txt

Now let’s freeze all the requirements inside requirements.txt by executing the below command on the command line.



pip freeze > requirements.txt

We are doing this for making sure that all of the required packages are installed while deploying the application.

Creating a Procfile for Gunicorn

For deploying the application on Heroku, we need to include a Procfile inside our project root directory. This will specify the command that is needed on startup for the execution by the app.

We can create a Procfile by executing the following command.

web: gunicorn <app_name>:app

Since in our case, the starting point of the application name is main.py. So we need to write- web: gunicorn main:app

To create the Procfile from the command line. You can simply execute the following command.

echo web: gunicorn main:app >> Procfile

5. Deploying flask application to Heroku Platform.

Login via Heroku CLI

First and foremost, we need to log in to Heroku.

heroku login



Heroku Login Command
Login Page Heroku

Creating Heroku App

You can create a Heroku app in 2 ways. One is via GUI and another one is via CLI.

Graphical Way:

From GUI you can create an application by visiting https://dashboard.heroku.com/new-app

Heroku Create App

CLI Way:

From CLI you can create an application by executing the following command on your terminal.

heroku create <app-name>

Deploy flask app to Heroku via git

Adding Heroku App to Remote:

git init
heroku git:remote -a <app-name>
git remote -v

Deploying:

git add .
git commit -m "Intial Commit"
git push heroku master

Deploying App
Deployment Final

That’s it for the tutorial of the “Deploy flask app to Heroku”. Now your application should be live.

https://testing-app-heroku-ittwist.herokuapp.com/

Deploy flask app to Heroku - Final Live

6. Deploying Heroku app via Github:

Instead of Heroku Git, you can also deploy your application to Heroku via Github.

You can push the existing Heroku application to Git Repository on Github by the following command:



git add .
git commit -m "Initial Commit"
git remote add origin <Remote Github Repository>
git branch -M main
git push -u origin main

After this, you can deploy your application from the Heroku GUI, following Github as a Deployment method. 

Heroku Deployment Github

If you have any questions or suggestions regarding this article, please feel free to write in the comment section below. We have also some interesting articles on Linux – Best Linux Distros that you should try in 2021.


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