Getting Started


Environment Configuration

It is often helpful to have different configuration values based on the environment where the application is running. For example, you may wish to use a different Google Analytics tag locally than you do on your production server.

To make this a cinch, Elegant utilizes the DotEnv NPM library. In a fresh Elegant installation, the root directory of your application will contain a .env.example file that defines many common environment variables. During the Elegant installation process, this file will automatically be copied to .env.

Elegant’s default .env file contains some common configuration values that may differ based on whether your application is running locally or on a production web server.

If you are developing with a team, you may wish to continue including a .env.example file with your application. By putting placeholder values in the example configuration file, other developers on your team can clearly see which environment variables are needed to run your application.


Any variable in your .env file can be overridden by external environment variables such as server-level or system-level environment variables.

Environment File Security

Your .env file should not be committed to your application’s source control, since each developer/server using your application could require a different environment configuration. Furthermore, this would be a security risk in the event an intruder gains access to your source control repository since any sensitive credentials would get exposed.

If you need to define an environment variable with a value that contains spaces, you may do so by enclosing the value in double quotes:


Retrieving Environment Configuration

All of the variables listed in the .env file will be loaded into the process.env Node super-global variable when your application is built. However, you may use the env function to retrieve values from these variables in your configuration files.

To access the NEXT_PUBLIC_APP_NAME environment variable in your application, simply reference the super Node super-global environment variable:

let title = process.env.NEXT_PUBLIC_APP_NAME


We have prefixed the environment variables within your .env file with NEXT_PUBLIC_ to make this application compatible with hosting and Next.js. For more information, please visit