nginx + uwsgi – what is serving static files?

reptilicus asked:

I am using nginx as a proxy to a couple of flask apps, with uwsgi as the middleware. Here’s my nginx config for a test app.

server {
    listen      80;
    charset     utf-8;
    client_max_body_size 250M;
    location / { try_files $uri @testapp; }

location @testapp {
    include uwsgi_params;
    uwsgi_pass unix:/tmp/testapp_uwsgi.sock;

location /forecaster/components/ {
    alias /opt/test/client/app/components/;


I'm pretty sure that nginx is not actually serving the static files though, even if I comment out the location block, the files are getting served from something. I see 200's in the nginx log, as well as 200's in the uWsgi logs. How can you tell which one is serving the static files? I suppose that the flask app could be serving them as well?

/opt/test/client/app/components/ certainly exists, and is readable to others. Is there some way to force uwsgi NOT to handle these requests?

My answer:

You do need a location. But that's not why nginx isn't serving your static files.

The problem is you forgot to specify a root directive in your server block. So nginx uses its compiled-in default, which is system-dependent and almost certainly isn't where your web app is located. Thus, all requests, including for static files, go upstream to uWSGI.

To fix the problem, set a root directive pointing to your app's static resources.

server {
    root /srv/www/testapp;

Or if you only have static files in subdirectories, you can specify then with location and alias as shown in the uWSGI documentation.

location /static {
    alias /srv/www/testapp/static;

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