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Installing Omeka on Reclaim


  • Log in to your Reclaim Hosting account and go to your cPanel.
  • Find “Web Applications” in the first set of options and click on Omeka.
    • You are now in the Installatron. Click on + install this application.
    • On the next screen, leave most of the settings on the default options, except the following:
      • Location: In the Directory box, you will need to provide a name for the directory on the server where your Omeka files will reside. This directory name will also appear in the URL of your current website after a backslash.
        • In this example, http://mywebsite.org/myexhibit, “myexhibit” is the name of directory where you installed the Omeka software (this is difficult to change later).
      • Scroll down to Settings:
        • In Administrator Username, create a username for yourself.
        • In Administrator Password, click on the “show password” button, and record the password.
        • In Web Site Title, add the name of your new website (this you can easily change later).
      • Scroll to the bottom, click + Install. The Installatron will take a few minutes to install the software for you.
  • Once installation is done, note that there are two URLs listed under the name of your website.
    • URL 1 is the public side (front end) of your Omeka site (i.e., http://mywebsite.org/myexhibit).
    • URL 2 takes you to the administrative side, where you manage the content and configure some of the website’s settings (i.e., http://mywebsite.org/myexhibit/admin).
  • The installation is complete, and you may log out of the Reclaim Hosting cPanel.

Managing Content in Omeka

  • Log in directly to your Omeka website, with the username and password you created at http://mywebsite.org/myexhibit/admin.
  • You will then arrive at your dashboard, which functions similarly to the WordPress dashboard. Here you will find links to all of the major administrative functions in Omeka, including adding items, managing the appearance of your site, and other site-level settings.
  • The building blocks of Omeka sites are items, so it’s a good time to add a few.
  • To do more with your Omeka site, you will need to install some plugins. Go to the top, black-colored navigation and click on Plugins.
    • What follows is a list of installed plugins. Your site comes with three pre-installed plugins: Exhibit Building, COiNS, and Simple Pages. Click the green Install button for each plugin.
    • Exhibit Builder, and Simple Pages have now been added to the admin menu on the left.
  • Create a webpage within your Omeka site by clicking on the Simple Pages tab in the left navigation.
  • Create a very small exhibit using the Exhibit Builder. This plugin allows you to develop online exhibits, or special web pages, that combine items from your Omeka archive with narrative text.

Extending Omeka with Plugins

Extending the functionality or changing the appearance of an Omeka site will require knowing how to add plugins and themes to your installation. Follow the steps provided here: https://labs.ssrc.org/dds/articles/extending-omeka-with-plugins/.

Managing Appearances

  • Click on the Appearance tab found on the top navigation. Omeka uses themes and navigation settings (menus) in a similar way to WordPress to control the basic design elements of an Omeka website.
  • Read more about adjusting those settings and configuring themes: http://omeka.org/codex/Managing_Appearance_2.0

Add a theme to your Omeka installation on Reclaim:

Your Omeka site comes with two themes, but you may wish to add another from the Omeka Theme directory.

  • Find a theme you like and download the zip file to your computer. Do not unzip the file.
  • Open another tab in your browser and sign into the Reclaim portal. Click on the cPanel for your domain, and go to the File Manager.
  • In the left-hand menu, click on the public_html folder icon, which opens the directory. Click on directory you created for your Omeka installation. Look down the list of directories and click on the “themes” folder.
  • Find the Upload tab in the top navigation bar of the File Manager.
  • Click Choose File and select the downloaded plugin zip file you saved to your computer.
    • Click on the Back to… link at the bottom of the screen to go back to the File Manager.
  • Select the uploaded .zip file, then click Extract in the top navigation bar.
    • You will see a folder labeled with the theme name. You can now delete the .zip file. Click on the .zip file, then click Delete in the top navigation bar.
  • Go back to your Omeka website’s /admin and log in. Under Appearances>Themes, the theme you just uploaded should be available to select and configure.


Reclaim has hosting-specific documentation for Omeka, a forum in which you can post issues, and a very responsive support team.

Updated on July 30, 2018

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