Dockerised Puppeteer post to Creator Studio<!-- --> | <!-- -->IORoot

Javascript / Puppeteer Instagram Scheduler

A container that runs puppeteer to login into facebook creator studio and schedule a video post to Instagram and Facebook.

1. Table of Contents


IMPORTANT - This puppeteer script will not run without a version of chromium that has NOT been compiled with the video/audio codecs. Chrome comes with them as standard but Chromium does not.

You can download a copy of Chromium with those codecs here: to query these routes.

You can then set the executablePath of puppeteer-core in the puppeteer settings to point to this version of chromium.

Warning - If you do not do this, then chromium will not upload any videos to the creator studio because it will not recognise those file formats. Images will work, however.

3. About The Project

This puppeteer script will automatically open up a new page, visit (or login) to facebook creator studio and create a new post with all of your supplied details.

This is a bare-bones example to make it as understandable as possible. It's meant for readability and help to understand the process.

It comes with a few components, that do separate things. The main parts are:

  1. creator_studio.js is a node script that does the main work. This runs the puppeteer scripts to do the automation.

  2. cli.js is the command-line interface to the creator_studio.js. It allows you to run the scripts from the command prompt.

  3. manual_run.js is for running the creator_studio.js with a load of settings already made. Note that it will need changing the executablePath to your own path as a minimum.

  4. video_download.js is a node script that will allow you to download a file to the local filesystem. This is needed so that you can download a video/image to then upload it to the creator studio.

  5. cli_vd.js is a command-line interface to the video_download.js script.

  6. server.js is an HTTP REST server to the same creator_studio.js script, allowing you to run the script remotely.

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3.1. Built With

This project was built with the following frameworks, technologies and software.

3.2. Requirements

  • Instagram 'business' account
  • Facebook 'creator studio' account.
  • Instagram account connected to the creator studio account.
  • Puppeteer-Core (without chromium installed - we do that manually)

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3.3. Installation

  1. Clone the repo.
    git clone
  2. Run NPM
    npm install

3.4. Authentication

Before you can run the script you will need to create an ./auth.json file in the following structure

        "apikey": "randomAPIKEYstringTOuseFORauthenticatingYOURSELF",
        "user": "",
        "pass": "my_creator_studio_password"

If this is not set, then the puppeteer scripts will not be able to login and run.

The API KEY is used to authenticate yourself with the REST server.js file.

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4. Puppeteer Script creator_studio.js

This is the main puppeteer script that does the automated steps. The script is broken into the following parts:

4.1. Inputs and setting Defaults.

At the top of the script you have all of thee loading in required libraries, global variables, default puppeteer_settings, default post settings, constants and XPATH locations.

4.2. Custom logger

The logger allows us to write to a file and prefix each line with a date/time. Logs are stored in ./logs/debug.log

4.3. Setters

These are the methods that change (set) all of the variables declared above. Thesee variables control the behaviour of the script.

  • publicSetUsername() sets the username or email address the script will use to log into the creator studio with.

  • publicSetPassword() sets the password for the account the script will log into.

  • publicSetCookieFile() tells the script to write all cookies to this filename set. Use just a filename, like cookies.json

  • publicSetPuppeteerSettings() allows you to override the default puppeteer settings. This allows you to do things like turning 'headless' on/off, devtools on/off, give a new chrome path, etc... e.g.
    headless: false, 
    devtools: false,
    executablePath: "/Users/me/",
    args: ['--no-sandbox']
  • publicSetScreenshots() turns on the screenshot function. This means that each step of the puppeteer script will take an image. This is helpful for debugging purposes and status updates.

  • publicSetNOOP() will turn on the NO OPeration functionality. Essentially, this will do every step as normal, however it will NOT submit everything at the end, within the creator_studio. THis is good for testing and making sure that all steps are working.

4.4. run

This is the main bulk of the script. Each step is broken up with a comment specifying what it will do. Use a debugger and the manual_run.js script (with headless off), to follow each step.

Each step will use the selector constant to reference the correct XPATH it should look for to perform it's task. For instance, the publish_button may change over time, so we can update the selector constant to look in a new XPATH location when that happens.

4.5. Public Methods

At the bottom of the script is a list of the public methods available to the CLI and the HTTP REST Server to access the Setter methods.

4.6. Test Usage of creator_studio.js

See the contents of the manual_run.js file to see a working version of running the script manually.

5. Command-Line Interface cli.js

This is the command-line interface to the puppeteer script.

5.1. Usage

You can run the command through the command line (without installing), like this:

Run the help file with:

❯ node ./cli.js --help
Usage: -u <user> -p <pass> -c <cookiefile> -v <videofile>

  --help             Show help                                         [boolean]
  --version          Show version number                               [boolean]
  -u, --user         Your facebook username/email            [string] [required]
  -p, --pass         Your facebook password                  [string] [required]
  -f, --cookiefile   Location of cookie file                 [string] [required]
  -v, --video        Instagram Video FilePath                [string] [required]
  -c, --caption      Instagram Caption Text                             [string]
  -i, --image        Instagram Video Cover FilePath                     [string]
  -l, --location     Instagram Location                                 [string]
  -d, --date         Instagram Schedule Date DD/MM/YYYY                 [string]
  -t, --time         Instagram Schedule Time HH:MM                      [string]
  -x, --crosspost    Post to Facebook Page too                          [string]
  -s, --screenshots  Screenshot every step
  -n, --noop         NO OPeration. Used to test script works

Install the commandline tool with: (while in the directory)

npm install -g .

Uninstall with:

npm uninstall -g ig-scheduler

Run an installed version with cs (which is the name of the command)

cs -u  to query these routes.

5.1.1. /

This is the main route. It will execute the puppeteer script.

node . -u  -p PASSWORD -f /Users/me/cookies.json -v ./ -c "Crosspost" -d 05/11/2020 -t 02:00 -x yes

You can track progress throught the debug log at ./logs/debug.log

6. Video Downloader. video_download.js

This has one public method, download() which takes two parameters, url and filePath. The cli_vd.js script should be used to run this method. Point it to the URL of a video to download for use.

7. Video Downloader CLI cli_vd.js

This is a simpler script that acts as a command-line interface to the video_download.js script.

You can see usage here:

❯ node ./cli_vd.js --help
Usage: -u <url> -f <file>

  --help      Show help                                                [boolean]
  --version   Show version number                                      [boolean]
  -u, --url   The video URL to download                      [string] [required]
  -f, --file  Your target filename                           [string] [required]

8. Web Server server.js

So this is an HTTP REST web interface that uses express.js. Since this is all meant to run within a docker container, the HOST is and PORT is 8080. It requires docker to connect to those ports to its external one.

8.1. Open Folders

There are four folders open that are used to allow you to access the contents. This uses the serve-index library to show the contents of the folder via a browser. visit the paths to see the contents.

8.1.1. /logs

This contains the debug.log file.

8.1.2. /videos

This contains the video files downloaded with the video_download.js script. Use this to check the video has downloaded.

8.1.3. /images

This contains the coverart files downloaded with the video_download.js script. Use to make sure the image file has downloaded.

8.1.4. /screenshots

Contains the last round of screenshots taken by the script if the screenshot parameter has been switched on.

8.2. Routes

The following routes are available. Use something like to query these routes.

  • POST to /
  • POST to /vd
  • POST to /clearcookies
  • GET to /clearlog
  • GET to /status

8.2.1. POST to /

A POST request to the root of the domain will execute the main puppeteer script.

Requires the following PARAMETERS:


Requires the following HEADERS:

  • CONTENT-TYPE = application/json

Requires the following RAW JSON BODY:

    "user":      "", 
    "pass":      "mypassword",
    "cookies":   "cookies.json",
    "video":     "output.mp4",
    "cover":     "cover.jpg",
    "date":      "09/11/2022",
    "time":      "12:30",
    "location":  "New York",
    "caption":   "Testing from postman",
    "crosspost": "on",
    "screenshots": "on",
    "noop":       false

8.2.2. POST to /vd

This will instigate the video_download.js script.

Requires the following PARAMETERS:


Requires the following HEADERS:

  • CONTENT-TYPE = application/json

Requires the following RAW JSON BODY:

    "url": "", 
    "file": "./videos/output.mp4"

8.2.3. POST to /clearcookies

This will delete the cookie file so the puppeteer script will need to log in again.

Requires the following PARAMETERS:


Requires the following HEADERS:

  • CONTENT-TYPE = application/json

Requires the following RAW JSON BODY:

    "cookies":   "cookies.json"

8.2.4. GET to /clearlog

This will truncate the debug.log file.

Requires the following PARAMETERS:


8.2.5. GET to /status

This will get the last known status of the script. It will be one of the following states:

  • success
  • running
  • error

Use this for alerting or metrics.

Requires the following PARAMETERS:


9. Docker

This script is also dockerised and contains the dockerfile I use to setup my installation on DigitalOcean.

10. Customising

Change the creator_studio.js file however you feel appropriate. Facebook updates the interface often, so you'll no doubt have to customise.

11. Troubleshooting

11.1. Intricacies and XPATH Problems.

Instagram will obfuscate and randomise all of the classnames on the creator studio page. This will make it difficult to target the correct part of the page. All of the current selectors and XPaths are in the selector object within the creator_studio.js file.

11.2. Troubleshooting puppeteer script

If the puppeteer script isn't working, then it's probably because facebook have changed their interface.

Run the puppeteer locally in "HEAD" mode and with DevTools to change the puppeteer script to match the current interface.

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12. Contributing

Contributions are what make the open source community such an amazing place to learn, inspire, and create. Any contributions you make are greatly appreciated.

If you have a suggestion that would make this better, please fork the repo and create a pull request. You can also simply open an issue. Don't forget to give the project a star! Thanks again!

  1. Fork the Project
  2. Create your Feature Branch (git checkout -b feature/AmazingFeature)
  3. Commit your Changes (git commit -m 'Add some AmazingFeature')
  4. Push to the Branch (git push origin feature/AmazingFeature)
  5. Open a Pull Request

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13. License

Distributed under the MIT License.

MIT License

Copyright (c) 2022 Andy Pearson

Permission is hereby granted, free of charge, to any person obtaining a copy of this software and associated documentation files (the "Software"), to deal in the Software without restriction, including without limitation the rights to use, copy, modify, merge, publish, distribute, sublicense, and/or sell copies of the Software, and to permit persons to whom the Software is furnished to do so, subject to the following conditions:

The above copyright notice and this permission notice shall be included in all copies or substantial portions of the Software.


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14. Contact

Author Link:

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15. Changelog

  • v1.1.0 - Updated for public use (removed all personal creds)

  • v1.0.0 - Initial Commit