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Installation & Setup

If you're upgrading from a previous version of Backlight, or from CE4, please read the Upgrading Documentation instead.

Backlight is designed to be easily installed and used to get your website up and running quickly. Your download includes a single item, the Backlight installer.

To get started, you will need your own Web hosting, and an FTP client. If new to using FTP, we've got you covered with our Introduction to FTP.

Follow the steps below, or watch the Backlight 2 installation video.

Step 1: Unzip and Upload

Unzip the downloaded Backlight installer. Copy the unzipped files to the public folder of your server.

Depending on your host, the name of the public folder will vary. It might be public_html, or may have another name. See our Introduction to FTP for more information or, if necessary, contact your host for assistance.

Important: Be sure to include the .htaccess file. It may be invisible in Mac's Finder or Windows Explorer, but you should be able to see it in your FTP client; make sure it's set to show invisible files.

After uploading, your folder structure should look like this:

  • public_html/
    • backlight/
    • galleries/
    • .htaccess
    • index.php

And so, Backlight's admin should be accessible at

Step 2: Run the Installer

To run the installer, visit:

Provide your Backlight 2 order number and email address to log into the installer.

Once logged in, press "Install Backlight". After a moment, you should be informed that "Backlight was installed successfully". From here, press "Continue to Backlight" to log in for the first time.

Step 3: Quick Setup

Now or in the future, you may reach Backlight's login page at the URL:

To log in for the first time, use the following defaults.





You will be presented the Quick Setup page. Completing this page is essential, the absolute minimum for kicking off your website.

You will be required to create a new password, and may subsequently log into Backlight's admin area with the username admin, and your chosen password.

About the API Key

During the Quick Setup, you will be asked to provide an API Key for Publisher. The API Key is used by the optional Publish Services plugin for Lightroom CC Classic, detailed below, and allows that plugin to connect to Backlight's admin.

We do not provide the API Key; you create it here. The API Key is an arbitrary password or randomized string of any length. To use the optional Lightroom plugin, you will need to enter the same API Key here and during the plugin setup, described later.

You may change the API Key at any time.

Step 4: Installing Add-ons and Updates

How-to Video: Installing Updates in Backlight 2

Backlight 2 features in-place installs and updates. In Backlight's admin, go to Admin => Backlight Modules.

Purchased add-ons and available updates will be displayed on the Backlight Modules page, matched to your purchase history by email address. If you've made Backlight purchases under multiple email addresses, you will need to contact us to consolidate your purchases under a single address.

From this screen, you will be able to install new purchases, or compare installed versions to available updates, updating Backlight with a click!


On completing the Quick Setup, you will find yourself at Backlight's dashboard. At this point, congratulations! Backlight is up and running.