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Cover image for Hosting a Discord bot on Repl.it
Fizal Sarif
Fizal Sarif

Posted on

Hosting a Discord bot on Repl.it

If you're an avid discord user you've definitely seen a bot (or 10) in the server(s) you're a part of. If you're a programmer of some sorts (hobby, college student, or tired professional) you've probably thought "I could make this better! πŸ€“".

This article is great if:

  • You have no access to a credit card and want to host your projects somewhere your friends (and potential employers) can access them 24/7.
  • You have the coolest discord bot idea and you're able to code rock paper scissors in some programming language. I used JavaScript for this example but this concept can be applied to Ruby, Python, Java, etc.
  • You know how package managers work for whatever programming language you'll try this with.
  • You're a cheapo like me and want to run a discord bot or a hundred discord bots for FREE!

Turn back now if you need a bot with voice capabilities. We'll be using Repl.it to host our bot and it's a pain to install ffmpeg on it.

Step 1: Create a Bot User

a) Sign into your discord account on https://discordapp.com and create a new application here. Then add a bot user to that application:
screenshot of a bot user

b) Next save your bot's token for later use:
Save your bot's token

c) The last thing we need from this portal is your bot's invite URL. This determines what your bot has permission to do. At the very least it needs permission to send messages. Make sure to invite it to your server using that URL!
Get your bot's invite url.

Step 2: Head to Repl.it

If you haven't heard of it Repl.it is an online IDE of sorts that lets you create and share small projects. It's pretty amazing and has constantly been adding features to help you do more online. We call these repls.

a) Create a new JavaScript repl.
Create a new Nodejs Repl

b) First thing we need to make sure a webserver is running in our repl. Repl.it will kill a running repl when you close the browser tab unless it's serving web content. Then Repl will keep it alive for an hour even if you close the tab. Paste the following code in your repl and Repl.it will automatically install packages for you and start an express webserver.

const express = require('express');
const app = express();
const port = 3000;

app.get('/', (req, res) => res.send('Hello World!'));

app.listen(port, () => console.log(`Example app listening at http://localhost:${port}`));
Enter fullscreen mode Exit fullscreen mode

If you look to the left, a file called package.json should have appeared.
packagejson
This file holds any packages you require in your repl. Plus any other scripts we might make. Just like a regular NodeJs project.

I chose express as my webserver. If you're working with Python you'd probably use Flask, Ruby would have Sinatra. For java however I would recommend investigating com.sun.net.httpserver.HttpServer for a speedy start up time.

c) Next we need to instantiate our bot.

const express = require('express');
const app = express();
const port = 3000;

app.get('/', (req, res) => res.send('Hello World!'));

app.listen(port, () => console.log(`Example app listening at http://localhost:${port}`));

// ================= START BOT CODE ===================
const Discord = require('discord.js');
const client = new Discord.Client();

client.on('ready', () => {
  console.log(`Logged in as ${client.user.tag}!`);
});

client.on('message', msg => {
  if (msg.content === 'ping') {
    msg.reply('pong!');
  }
});
// You really don't want your token here since your repl's code
// is publically available. We'll take advantage of a Repl.it 
// feature to hide the token we got earlier. 
client.login(process.env.DISCORD_TOKEN);
Enter fullscreen mode Exit fullscreen mode

ping pong is sort of like the hello world for bots. Once we start this up you should see your bot online in your server. If you send the word ping in your server the bot should reply with pong.

After you've pasted that code snippet in, don't click restart yet!

d) Create a .env file

On the left create a file called .env, the content of the file should be:

DISCORD_TOKEN=your_token
Enter fullscreen mode Exit fullscreen mode

This will help us hide your token from the rest of the world. Read more about it here in Repl.it's Docs.

Now that the proper credentials are in, you can click restart now. Your bot should be online!
bot online
it alive boss

Congrats! You can peruse the discord.js documentation to implement all the cool bot features you can dream of!

Step 3: Keepin' our bot alive

stayin' alive

As I mentioned before Repl.it puts repls to sleep. Here's a note from their docs about that:

Once deployed, the server will continue to run in the background, even after you close the browser tab. The server will stay awake and active until an hour after its last request, after which it will enter a sleeping stage. Sleeping repls will be woken up as soon as it receives another request; there is no need to re-run the repl. However, if you make changes to your server, you will need to restart the repl in order to see those changes reflected in the live version.

We're going to use Uptime Robot to keep our bot online.

a) Copy the url for your repl's webserver.
url

b) Create an account on Uptime Robot and create a monitor to ping your server every 5 minutes
keepin dem alive

That's it! We're done. Have fun with your 24/7 hosted bot. Sometimes the bot might be offline. But for 99% of the day it'll be online thanks to Uptime Robot.

Happy Coding Folks!

Top comments (46)

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botmaker349 profile image
botmaker349 • Edited on

/home/runner/trying-trying-tryimg/index.js:8
const express = require('express');
^

SyntaxError: Identifier 'express' has already been declared
Hint: hit control+c anytime to enter REPL.
ξΊ§
help pls

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thediamondcg profile image
Diamond

You have already set up express as a variable, and now can't change it because it's ALREADY a constant.

P.S: This is a sign you cant' understand the code you're writing. If you don't understand the code you are writing, then you NEED to go to the basics and learn JavaScript itself before delving into complicated topics like Node.js and APIs.

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mczgodpiggy profile image
MCZgodpiggy363 • Edited on

i'm good with that tho
dev-to-uploads.s3.amazonaws.com/up...

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aryamaan08 profile image
Aryamaan08

Hey,
I made mine using Python and unfortunately it didn't work. I'm guessing it's because I can't see the token because it is in .env and Uptime Monitor is not the owner. I even tried it without the .env, it still didn't work can you help me?

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thediamondcg profile image
Diamond

Python isn't necessarily the language for back-end web apps. Either use Go or Node.js. Go is phenomenal for the job because it's incredibly fast, yet its size is bloated so not good for storage-sensitive applications. Luckily, servers aren't storage-sensitive which is where it's supposed to run :) On the other hand, Node.js is delightfully tiny, only as big as the text file you made to run it. The down side is that it's much slower than languages like Go.

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mataskrivickas profile image
Force Studios - Comms Open

Unfortunately, your using Python, that is the problem. This is meant for discord.js. I would recommend going to here: dev.to/harshitojha/host-a-discord-...

It is a python version of this

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xghp3x profile image
Explox

I used Node.js for this and it works. The guy in the tutorial did the same thing. So I recommend you try to use Node.js and see how it goes

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aplha101 profile image
Aplha101

I used this method mine is working but where can I add more features to it?

Thread Thread
 
anmols149 profile image
AnmolS149

Well, there are two things you can do:

  1. Learn a coding language like JavaScript or Python... or
  2. use Scratch for Discord to make a bot and host it on RepL.it. You don't need any coding knowledge. You will need some basic knowledge of file and package management... Here's scratch for discord: scratch-for-discord.netlify.app

there can be some bugs with it, also you need to create a .env file to protect your bot token from hacking....

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centanomics profile image
Cent | Shannon Myers

Thanks for this! I've used Repl.it before but never for hosting purposes

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hassan_bh profile image
Hassan-BH

Yes of course.

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mataskrivickas profile image
Force Studios - Comms Open

It's good, i'm pretty sure you're using "Atom" as a coding platform. Visual Code & Atom is same. Almost every coding software is the same and can be used on as long as you have discord.js downloaded by downloading node.js

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seenloveswumpus profile image
Seenloveswumpus

Hi, I have a repl team and it not working when I put the URL in to uptime robot. (not keeping online)

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creationsstudios profile image
Creations Studios

Hi it won't work. The bot isn't online and in repl it said the token is invalid.

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creationsstudios profile image
Creations Studios

Server {
insecureHTTPParser: undefined,
_events: [Object: null prototype] {
request: [Function: app] EventEmitter {
_events: [Object: null prototype],
_eventsCount: 1,
_maxListeners: undefined,
setMaxListeners: [Function: setMaxListeners],
getMaxListeners: [Function: getMaxListeners],
emit: [Function],
addListener: [Function: addListener],
on: [Function: addListener],
prependListener: [Function: prependListener],
once: [Function: once],
prependOnceListener: [Function: prependOnceListener],
removeListener: [Function: removeListener],
off: [Function: removeListener],
removeAllListeners: [Function: removeAllListeners],
listeners: [Function: listeners],
rawListeners: [Function: rawListeners],
listenerCount: [Function: listenerCount],
eventNames: [Function: eventNames],
init: [Function: init],
defaultConfiguration: [Function: defaultConfiguration],
lazyrouter: [Function: lazyrouter],
handle: [Function: handle],
use: [Function: use],
route: [Function: route],
engine: [Function: engine],
param: [Function: param],
set: [Function: set],
path: [Function: path],
enabled: [Function: enabled],
disabled: [Function: disabled],
enable: [Function: enable],
disable: [Function: disable],
acl: [Function],
bind: [Function],
checkout: [Function],
connect: [Function],
copy: [Function],
delete: [Function],
get: [Function],
head: [Function],
link: [Function],
lock: [Function],
'm-search': [Function],
merge: [Function],
mkactivity: [Function],
mkcalendar: [Function],
mkcol: [Function],
move: [Function],
notify: [Function],
options: [Function],
patch: [Function],
post: [Function],
pri: [Function],
propfind: [Function],
proppatch: [Function],
purge: [Function],
put: [Function],
rebind: [Function],
report: [Function],
search: [Function],
source: [Function],
subscribe: [Function],
trace: [Function],
unbind: [Function],
unlink: [Function],
unlock: [Function],
unsubscribe: [Function],
all: [Function: all],
del: [Function],
render: [Function: render],
listen: [Function: listen],
request: [IncomingMessage],
response: [ServerResponse],
cache: {},
engines: {},
settings: [Object],
locals: [Object: null prototype],
mountpath: '/',
_router: [Function]
},
connection: [Function: connectionListener],
listening: [Function: bound onceWrapper] { listener: [Function] }
},
_eventsCount: 3,
_maxListeners: undefined,
_connections: 0,
_handle: TCP {
reading: false,
onconnection: [Function: onconnection],
[Symbol(owner_symbol)]: [Circular]
},
_usingWorkers: false,
_workers: [],
_unref: false,
allowHalfOpen: true,
pauseOnConnect: false,
httpAllowHalfOpen: false,
timeout: 120000,
keepAliveTimeout: 5000,
maxHeadersCount: null,
Promise {
Error [TOKEN_INVALID]: An invalid token was provided.
at Client.login (/home/runner/ReminderBot/node_modules/discord.js/src/client/Client.js:206:52)
at /home/runner/ReminderBot/index.js:24:8
at Script.runInContext (vm.js:130:18)
at Object. (/run_dir/interp.js:209:20)
at Module._compile (internal/modules/cjs/loader.js:999:30)
at Object.Module._extensions..js (internal/modules/cjs/loader.js:1027:10)
at Module.load (internal/modules/cjs/loader.js:863:32)
at Function.Module._load (internal/modules/cjs/loader.js:708:14)
at Function.executeUserEntryPoint as runMain
at internal/main/run_main_module.js:17:47 {
[Symbol(code)]: 'TOKEN_INVALID'
}
}
Hint: hit control+c anytime to enter REPL.
Example app listening at localhost:3000
(node:316) UnhandledPromiseRejectionWarning: Error [TOKEN_INVALID]: An invalid token was provided.
at Client.login (/home/runner/ReminderBot/node_modules/discord.js/src/client/Client.js:206:52)
at /home/runner/ReminderBot/index.js:24:8
at Script.runInContext (vm.js:130:18)
at Object. (/run_dir/interp.js:209:20)
at Module._compile (internal/modules/cjs/loader.js:999:30)
at Object.Module._extensions..js (internal/modules/cjs/loader.js:1027:10)
at Module.load (internal/modules/cjs/loader.js:863:32)
at Function.Module._load (internal/modules/cjs/loader.js:708:14)
at Function.executeUserEntryPoint as runMain
at internal/main/run_main_module.js:17:47
(node:316) UnhandledPromiseRejectionWarning: Unhandled promise rejection. This error originated either by throwing inside of an async function without a catch block, or by rejecting a
Promise {
Error [TOKEN_INVALID]: An invalid token was provided.
at Client.login (/home/runner/ReminderBot/node_modules/discord.js/src/client/Client.js:206:52)
at /home/runner/ReminderBot/index.js:24:8
at Script.runInContext (vm.js:130:18)
at Object. (/run_dir/interp.js:209:20)
at Module._compile (internal/modules/cjs/loader.js:999:30)
at Object.Module._extensions..js (internal/modules/cjs/loader.js:1027:10)
at Module.load (internal/modules/cjs/loader.js:863:32)
at Function.Module._load (internal/modules/cjs/loader.js:708:14)
at Function.executeUserEntryPoint as runMain
at internal/main/run_main_module.js:17:47 {
[Symbol(code)]: 'TOKEN_INVALID'
}
}
Hint: hit control+c anytime to enter REPL.
Example app listening at localhost:3000
(node:359) UnhandledPromiseRejectionWarning: Error [TOKEN_INVALID]: An invalid token was provided.
at Client.login (/home/runner/ReminderBot/node_modules/discord.js/src/client/Client.js:206:52)
at /home/runner/ReminderBot/index.js:24:8
at Script.runInContext (vm.js:130:18)
at Object. (/run_dir/interp.js:209:20)
at Module._compile (internal/modules/cjs/loader.js:999:30)
at Object.Module._extensions..js (internal/modules/cjs/loader.js:1027:10)
at Module.load (internal/modules/cjs/loader.js:863:32)
at Function.Module._load (internal/modules/cjs/loader.js:708:14)
at Function.executeUserEntryPoint as runMain
at internal/main/run_main_module.js:17:47
(node:359) UnhandledPromiseRejectionWarning: Unhandled promise rejection. This error originated either by throwing inside of an async function without a catch block, or by rejecting a
TypeError: Cannot read property 'env' of undefined
at /home/runner/ReminderBot/index.js:24:28
at Script.runInContext (vm.js:130:18)
at Object. (/run_dir/interp.js:209:20)
at Module._compile (internal/modules/cjs/loader.js:999:30)
Promise {
Error [TOKEN_INVALID]: An invalid token was provided.
at Client.login (/home/runner/ReminderBot/node_modules/discord.js/src/client/Client.js:206:52)
at /home/runner/ReminderBot/index.js:24:8
at Script.runInContext (vm.js:130:18)
at Object. (/run_dir/interp.js:209:20)
at Module._compile (internal/modules/cjs/loader.js:999:30)
at Object.Module._extensions..js (internal/modules/cjs/loader.js:1027:10)
at Module.load (internal/modules/cjs/loader.js:863:32)
at Function.Module._load (internal/modules/cjs/loader.js:708:14)
at Function.executeUserEntryPoint as runMain
at internal/main/run_main_module.js:17:47 {
[Symbol(code)]: 'TOKEN_INVALID'
}
}
Hint: hit control+c anytime to enter REPL.
Example app listening at localhost:3000
(node:456) UnhandledPromiseRejectionWarning: Error [TOKEN_INVALID]: An invalid token was provided.
at Client.login (/home/runner/ReminderBot/node_modules/discord.js/src/client/Client.js:206:52)
at /home/runner/ReminderBot/index.js:24:8
at Script.runInContext (vm.js:130:18)
at Object. (/run_dir/interp.js:209:20)
at Module._compile (internal/modules/cjs/loader.js:999:30)
at Object.Module._extensions..js (internal/modules/cjs/loader.js:1027:10)
at Module.load (internal/modules/cjs/loader.js:863:32)
at Function.Module._load (internal/modules/cjs/loader.js:708:14)
at Function.executeUserEntryPoint as runMain
at internal/main/run_main_module.js:17:47
(node:456) UnhandledPromiseRejectionWarning: Unhandled promise rejection. This error originated either by throwing inside of an async function without a catch block, or by rejecting a
Promise {
Error [TOKEN_INVALID]: An invalid token was provided.
at Client.login (/home/runner/ReminderBot/node_modules/discord.js/src/client/Client.js:206:52)
at /home/runner/ReminderBot/index.js:24:8
at Script.runInContext (vm.js:130:18)
at Object. (/run_dir/interp.js:209:20)
at Module._compile (internal/modules/cjs/loader.js:999:30)
at Object.Module._extensions..js (internal/modules/cjs/loader.js:1027:10)
at Module.load (internal/modules/cjs/loader.js:863:32)
at Function.Module._load (internal/modules/cjs/loader.js:708:14)
at Function.executeUserEntryPoint as runMain
at internal/main/run_main_module.js:17:47 {
[Symbol(code)]: 'TOKEN_INVALID'
}
}
Hint: hit control+c anytime to enter REPL.
Example app listening at localhost:3000
(node:496) UnhandledPromiseRejectionWarning: Error [TOKEN_INVALID]: An invalid token was provided.
at Client.login (/home/runner/ReminderBot/node_modules/discord.js/src/client/Client.js:206:52)
at /home/runner/ReminderBot/index.js:24:8
at Script.runInContext (vm.js:130:18)
at Object. (/run_dir/interp.js:209:20)
at Module._compile (internal/modules/cjs/loader.js:999:30)
at Object.Module._extensions..js (internal/modules/cjs/loader.js:1027:10)
at Module.load (internal/modules/cjs/loader.js:863:32)
at Function.Module._load (internal/modules/cjs/loader.js:708:14)
at Function.executeUserEntryPoint as runMain
at internal/main/run_main_module.js:17:47
(node:496) UnhandledPromiseRejectionWarning: Unhandled promise rejection. This error originated either by throwing inside of an async function without a catch block, or by rejecting a promise which was not handled with .catch(). To terminate the node process on unhandled promise rejection, use the CLI flag --unhandled-rejections=strict (see nodejs.org/api/cli.html#cli_unhand...). (rejection id: 1)
(node:496) [DEP0018] DeprecationWarning: Unhandled promise rejections are deprecated. In the future, promise rejections that are not handled will terminate the Node.js process with a non-zero exit code.

Here is the console

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opielix profile image
Opilite Elix

same

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opielix profile image
Opilite Elix

and the repl brakes and can't wake up

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aryasarukkai profile image
Arya Sarukkai

With this, people can access the code and token of this bot though, right?

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bestplayerxu profile image
bestPlayerXu

no. the .env file is the only private-hidden file.

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anmols149 profile image
AnmolS149

no the .env file is private and can be only viewed by you...plus what are the odds of someone searching your rep and then scrolling through it to find your token...also you can always regenerate it...

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paaaap profile image
pAAAAp

Would this work if you close the Uptime Robots tab?

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gio2chi profile image
Gio2chi

It still works?

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hassan_bh profile image
Hassan-BH

I don't know how to thank you dude.
You rock!

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duckyisgood profile image
duckyisgood

can you do it on python?

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agiltriono profile image
Agil Triono

i have been created one discord bot it is been in development but i have the fork version so to try this , it work !!
Used uptimerobot for every 30 minutes with delay 1 minutes .

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bradtft profile image
BradTFT

so when i paste my webserver url into uptime robot is just says "Enter a valid IP or FQDN" any fixes for this?

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wylimee profile image
emily :) |open commisions|

It doesn't work, what to do
also with the new secrets thing idk what
for the "Next we need to instantiate our bot." do we like put it in the same file?

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warengonzaga profile image
Waren Gonzaga

Is there any limits on users? What if you host a music discord bot in your repl it will buffer?

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anmols149 profile image
AnmolS149

I host 3 separate scripts (reps) for the same bot on RepL..they are a chat bot, a rank bot and a music bot...none of them lag...

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