How should we help with Open-Source Shiny Server Deployment Issues

A meta question about how to support folks deploying apps to Shiny Server.


I have seen several folks with Shiny questions have an issue that only manifests when running their app on the Shiny Server (latest example). In my limited server experience, this is usually because there is something wrong with path names, file permissions, or variables loaded in RStudio but not in the app etc... Of course you need the error info to get an idea where the error might be because the code itself is often not helpful.

As far as I can see, there is no reprex guide yet on how to extract the correct (error) log information and app stats from the Shiny server. I have not enough experience with that myself to write it, but I think it could be handy to have one to help users share that info. Or we could add it to the existing Shiny reprex guide.

I don't think this is complex enough to require a separate guide, maybe adding a simple reference to looking for log files on the /var/log/shiny-server folder would be good enough.

As a note, I think we must differentiate users whom have problems with their specific apps (like in the example) and users that are having issues with shiny-server itself (server configuration), I think the latest would have to be referred to the #r-admin category.

This was a direct-message we'd like to open up to the public forum.


We are working on Shiny-app troubleshooting and reprex guides. Currently, these are focused on novice and more advanced users building their Shiny app. But this question brings up the need to improve how we advise folks having issues deploying these apps. And then as folks deploy their apps, they might deploy to shinyapps.io, Shiny-Server, Shiny Server Pro, RStudio Connect, or other options.

I'm curious what folks with more experience with diagnosing Shiny deployment issues think are the best practices to help these folks?

My goal for this thread would be to inform a set of guides for folks on RStudio Community to help others sort out their issues. That is, what info should we always ask people to provide? Should we have specific guides for each deployment endpoint or take a different approach?


Just for reference, currently, the resources for Shiny Deployment troubleshooting are;