Extending OSM capability to realise a fictional country.


After nearly two years of editing OpenStreetMap with as much knowledge as I know about Greater London, I hope to extend my map editing skills to map a fictional country that I have been thinking about for more than five years now.

I do not plan to use OpenGeoFiction to accomplish this because I like to get the benefit of implementing something of my own: I plan to use a recently decommissioned home-made computer at home (it was the last to have a 32-bit OS as it was built in 2009) to be my server to host my fictional maps. This would mean that I would have to create my own OSM-based platform to serve and host my maps, and it would be great if I can get some advice on how to create an OSM-fork for my own maps.

My specific requirements include the need to be able to edit my maps through the JOSM application, because I do not want to have to open the whole world just to add a new building or road that I thought of the night before. I do not require Potlatch or iD for my server, but I’d like to install a couple of extra stylesheets in addition to the standard style to show off my public transport system lines. Finally, my project only covers the equivalent to a part of South East Europe, so I don’t need a whole-planet file. As the server will not operate 24 hours a day the server needs to be able to run on startup.

I started this topic because while I have already looked around for instructions to set up a simple tile server, I think there may be specific instructions to realise my project which is probably a lot more than just a tile server (especially with the JOSM capability): obviously, I wish to avoid making the mistakes that waste my time.

These are the specifications of my spare computer:
Operating System: Ubuntu 14.04.1 LTS
Processor: Intel Core i7 920, 2.67 GHz over 4 physical CPUs
Memory: 6144 MB RAM
Disk spaces and roles:

  • One 500 GB Drive for holding the operating system:
  • One 1.5 TB Drive for holding the production database and tiles, mounted on Ubuntu as at “/onm”, and the web root also being “/onm”

Thanks in advance.

Do you look for something like http://opengeofiction.net/ ?


I sincerely appreciate offers for using OpenGeoFiction, but on this occasion I would like to implement a whole private server so that I can create a map of Minoa on NationStates. It is a large country so that I wish to take advantage of JOSM’s ability to edit part of the database, since my map will be large.

I am mostly a Mac user who is quite new to Ubuntu, which I believe is the distribution that OpenStreetMap uses. I hope that easy to understand instructions for setting up a production version of the server will help other NationStates players who like to use OSM technology to map large fantasy countries to a point where editing a whole file on JOSM becomes resource expensive.


Most of the instructions that you’ll see online (for example http://switch2osm.org/serving-tiles/manually-building-a-tile-server-14-04/ ) are for setting up a rendering server - something that takes OpenStreetMap data as a .osm or .pbf file, stores it in a database and can create map tiles from it.

This might be enough for your needs, at least initially, as you could save a .osm file with JOSM and load that. Certainly, if you’ve not set up a rendering server before that’s where I’d start.

That’s only part of the OSM server stuff though - for that see the details at http://wiki.openstreetmap.org/wiki/Rails_port , which includes the API that editors upload to and the database that “planet files” are generated from, that are then imported into a database on a rendering server.

However, I suspect that you’ll get more / better advice on either the “dev” mailing list https://lists.openstreetmap.org/listinfo/dev or the #osm-dev IRC channel irc://irc.oftc.net/osm-dev . They both have more traffic than this forum.