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Merge-arrows-2.pngThis article or section is a candidate for merging with Gitlab2.Merge-arrows-2.png

Notes: Most of the article is duplicated. (Discuss in Talk:Gitlab#)

Tango-view-refresh-red.pngThis article or section is out of date.Tango-view-refresh-red.png

Reason: As of version 5.0,Gitlab will no longer depend on gitolite. Also redis is replaced by sidekiq. A rewrite is scheduled when 5.0 comes out on March 22nd. (Discuss in Talk:Gitlab#)

Gitlab is a free git repository management application based on Ruby on Rails. It is distributed under the MIT License and its source code can be found on Github. It is a very active project with a monthly release cycle and ideal for businesses that want to keep their code private. Consider it as a self hosted Github but open source. You can try a demo here.

Required packages

Install the packages below as they are needed to proceed further.

# pacman -Syu --noconfirm --needed sudo base-devel zlib libyaml openssl gdbm readline ncurses libffi curl git openssh redis libxml2 libxslt icu python2
Note: In order to receive mail notifications, make sure to install a mail server. By default, Archlinux does not ship with one. The recommended mail server is postfix, but you can use others such as SSMTP, msmtp, sendmail, etc.

PKGBUILDs for Gitlab and Gitlab-shell

There are some (not fully working) PKGBUILDs available to create installable packages:

Gitlab PKGBUILD on

Gitlab-shell PKGBUILD on

(Please extend/rename this section with further instructions)


GitLab supports ruby >= 1.9.3 and 2.0.0, but some dependencies gems work better with ruby 1.9.3. Install it from the official repositories and if you bump into any trouble use rvm with ruby 1.9.3-p392.

Note: If you want to use rvm be sure to check out Gitlab#Running GitLab with rvm before starting with the installation

User accounts

Add git user:

# useradd -dmU /home/git git
Note: git user must have its initial group set to git (not users). If the initial group is not git, then all files created by the git user will be owned by git:users which will prevent GitLab from showing you a newly created repository (it will get stucked at the page where it tells you how to push to the new repository).


GitLab Shell is an ssh access and repository management software developed specially for GitLab.

Login as git:

# su - git

Clone gitlab shell:

$ git clone
$ cd gitlab-shell

Switch to the right version:

$ git checkout v1.4.0

Edit config.yml and replace gitlab_url with something like

$ cp config.yml.example config.yml

Setup the environment:

$ ./bin/install

You should see this result:

Example output
mkdir -p /home/git/repositories: true
mkdir -p /home/git/.ssh: true
chmod 700 /home/git/.ssh: true
touch /home/git/.ssh/authorized_keys: true
chmod 600 /home/git/.ssh/authorized_keys: true
chmod -R ug+rwX,o-rwx /home/git/repositories: true
find /home/git/repositories -type d -print0 | xargs -0 chmod g+s: true

Database selection

Currently GitLab supports MySQL and PostgreSQL. MariaDB has not been officially tested.


Install mariadb and libmariadbclient from the official repositories and start the daemon. Create the database and do not forget to replace your_password_here with a real one.

# su - git
$ mysql -u root -p
mysql> CREATE DATABASE IF NOT EXISTS `gitlabhq_production` DEFAULT CHARACTER SET `utf8` COLLATE `utf8_unicode_ci`;
mysql> CREATE USER 'gitlab'@'localhost' IDENTIFIED BY 'your_password_here';
mysql> GRANT SELECT, LOCK TABLES, INSERT, UPDATE, DELETE, CREATE, DROP, INDEX, ALTER ON `gitlabhq_production`.* TO 'gitlab'@'localhost';
mysql> \q

Try connecting to the new database with the new user:

$ mysql -u gitlab -p -D gitlabhq_production


Install postgresql and libpqxx from the official repositories. Follow PostgreSQL#Installing_PostgreSQL to set it up and start the daemon.

Login to PostgreSQL and remember to change your_password_here to a real one:

# sudo -u postgres psql -d template1
template1=# CREATE USER git WITH PASSWORD 'your_password_here';
template1=# CREATE DATABASE gitlabhq_production OWNER git;
template1=# \q

Try connecting to the new database with the new user:

# sudo -u git -H psql -d gitlabhq_production


If you are still in favor of mysqlAUR, follow the same commands as MariaDB.



Clone GitLab's repository:

# su - git
$ git clone gitlab
$ cd gitlab
$ git checkout 5-2-stable
Note: You can change 5-2-stable to master if you want the bleeding edge version, but do so with caution! Check github to see what is the latest stable version and replace above accordingly.

Basic configuration

First we need to rename the example file.

$ cp config/gitlab.yml.example config/gitlab.yml

The options are pretty straightforward. Open config/gitlab.yml with your favorite editor and edit where needed. Make sure to change localhost to the fully-qualified domain name of your host serving GitLab where necessary.

Make sure GitLab can write to the log/ and tmp/ directories:

$ chown -R git log/
$ chown -R git tmp/
$ chmod -R u+rwX  log/
$ chmod -R u+rwX  tmp/

Create directory for satellites:

$ mkdir /home/git/gitlab-satellites

Create directories for sockets/pids and make sure GitLab can write to them:

$ mkdir tmp/{pids,sockets}
$ chmod -R u+rwX  tmp/{pids,sockets}

Create the public/uploads directory otherwise backup will fail:

$ mkdir public/uploads
$ chmod -R u+rwX  public/uploads

Copy the example Puma config and edit to your liking:

$ cp config/puma.rb.example config/puma.rb

Configure Git global settings for git user, useful when editing via web. Edit according to what is set in gitlab.yml:

$ git config --global "GitLab"
$ git config --global "gitlab@localhost"

Configure GitLab database settings:

  • MariaDB:
$ cp config/database.yml.mysql config/database.yml
  • PostgreSQL:
$ cp config/database.yml.postgresql config/database.yml

Make sure to update username/password in config/database.yml.

Install gems

Tip: If you do not want to download any gem documentation, add gem: --no-rdoc --no-ri to /home/git/.gemrc. Be sure to add it as the git user in order to acquire the appropriate permissions.
Note: See bug #33327 for about system-wide gems. As a temporary solution the following packages will be installed as git user, make sure nano ~/.gemrc contains gem: ... --user-install. And then add the bin path to the PATH variable like so export PATH="${PATH}:~/.gem/ruby/2.0.0/bin".

Install bundler and charlock_holmes under $HOME/.gem/ (normally system wide via sudo):

# su - git
$ gem install charlock_holmes --version ''
$ gem install bundler

Install gems from Gemfile:

$ cd gitlab/
Note: When executing the below and you recieve `Could not verify the SSL certificate for` see bug #GitHub-4095 most likely because you're behind a proxy that tries to inject a local certificate for SSL domains in order to verify its content

If you used MariaDB:

$ bundle install --deployment --without development test postgres

If you used PostgreSQL:

$ bundle install --deployment --without development test mysql
Note: Using --without group_name in bundle command line will ignore required packages for the mentioned groups.

Initialize Database

Note: Make sure the redis daemon is enabled and started, otherwise the following command will fail.

Initialize database and activate advanced features:

$ bundle exec rake gitlab:setup RAILS_ENV=production

Check status

With the following commands we check if the steps we followed so far are configured properly.

$ bundle exec rake gitlab:env:info RAILS_ENV=production
$ bundle exec rake gitlab:check RAILS_ENV=production
Example output of gitlab:env:info
System information
System:		Arch Linux
Current User:	git
Using RVM:	yes
RVM Version:	1.20.3
Ruby Version:	2.0.0p0
Gem Version:	2.0.0
Bundler Version:1.3.5
Rake Version:	10.0.4

GitLab information
Version:	5.2.0.pre
Revision:	4353bab
Directory:	/home/git/gitlab
DB Adapter:	mysql2
URL:		http://gitlab.arch
HTTP Clone URL:	http://gitlab.arch/some-project.git
SSH Clone URL:	git@gitlab.arch:some-project.git
Using LDAP:	no
Using Omniauth:	no

GitLab Shell
Version:	1.4.0
Repositories:	/home/git/repositories/
Hooks:		/home/git/gitlab-shell/hooks/
Git:		/usr/bin/git
Note: gitlab:check will complain about missing initscripts. Don't worry, we will use ArchLinux' systemd to manage server start (which GitLab does not recognize).

Web server configuration

Unicorn only

Note: As of GitLab 5.1 Unicorn is no longer the default server as it got replaced by Puma. You can therefore ignore this section.

Edit /home/gitlab/gitlab/config/unicorn.rb uncomment:

listen 8080 # listen to port 8080 on all TCP interfaces

Create /etc/rc.d/unicorn-gitlab.


. /etc/rc.conf
. /etc/rc.d/functions

PID=`pidof -o %PPID /usr/bin/ruby`
case "$1" in
    stat_busy "Starting unicorn"
    [ -z "$PID" ] && sudo -u gitlab bash  -c  "source /home/gitlab/.bash_profile && cd /home/gitlab/gitlab/ && bundle exec unicorn_rails -c config/unicorn.rb -E production -D"
    if [ $? -gt 0 ]; then
      add_daemon unicorn
    stat_busy "Stopping unicorn"
    [ ! -z "$PID" ]  && kill $PID &> /dev/null
    if [ $? -gt 0 ]; then
      rm_daemon unicorn
    $0 stop
    sleep 1
    $0 start
    echo "usage: $0 {start|stop|restart}"
exit 0

Start unicorn:

# /etc/rc.d/unicorn-gitlab start

Test it http://localhost:8080

Add it to DAEMONS array in /etc/rc.conf

Redirect http port to unicorn server

# iptables -A PREROUTING -t nat -i eth0 -p tcp --dport 80 -j REDIRECT --to-port 8080

And test again, now http://localhost

Nginx and unicorn

Install nginx from the official repositories.

Run these commands to setup nginx:

# wget -P /etc/nginx/sites-available/
# ln -s /etc/nginx/sites-available/gitlab /etc/nginx/sites-enabled/gitlab 

Edit /etc/nginx/sites-enabled/gitlab and change YOUR_SERVER_IP and YOUR_SERVER_FQDN to the IP address and fully-qualified domain name of the host serving Gitlab. As you can see nginx needs to access /home/gitlab/gitlab/tmp/sockets/gitlab.socket socket file. You have to be able to run sudo -u http ls /home/gitlab/gitlab/tmp/sockets/gitlab.socket successfully. Otherwise setup access to the directory:

# chgrp http /home/gitlab
# chmod u=rwx,g=rx,o= /home/gitlab

Restart gitlab.service, resque.service and nginx.

Unicorn is an HTTP server for Rack applications designed to only serve fast clients on low-latency, high-bandwidth connections and take advantage of features in Unix/Unix-like kernels. First we rename the example file and then we start unicorn:

# cd /home/gitlab/gitlab
# sudo -u gitlab cp config/unicorn.rb.orig config/unicorn.rb
# sudo -u gitlab bundle exec unicorn_rails -c config/unicorn.rb -E production -D

Apache and unicorn

Install apache from the official repositories.

Configure Unicorn

As the official installation guide instructs, copy the unicorn configuration file:

# sudo -u gitlab -H cp /home/gitlab/gitlab/config/unicorn.rb.example /home/gitlab/gitlab/config/unicorn.rb

Now edit config/unicorn.rb and add a listening port by uncommenting the following line:

listen ""
Tip: You can set a custom port if you want. Just remember to also include it in Apache's virtual host. See below.

Create a virtual host for Gitlab

Create a configuration file for Gitlab’s virtual host and insert the lines below adjusted accordingly. For the ssl section see LAMP#SSL. If you do not need it, remove it. Notice that the SSL virtual host needs a specific IP instead of generic. Also if you set a custom port for Unicorn, do not forget to set it at the BalanceMember line.

# mkdir -pv /etc/httpd/conf/vhosts/
<VirtualHost *:80>
  DocumentRoot /home/gitlab/gitlab/public
  ErrorLog /var/log/httpd/gitlab_error_log
  CustomLog /var/log/httpd/gitlab_access_log combined

  <Proxy balancer://unicornservers>

  <Directory /home/gitlab/gitlab/public>
    AllowOverride All
    Options -MultiViews

  RewriteEngine on
  RewriteRule ^/(.*)$ balancer://unicornservers%{REQUEST_URI} [P,QSA,L]

  ProxyPass /uploads !
  ProxyPass / balancer://unicornservers/
  ProxyPassReverse / balancer://unicornservers/
  ProxyPreserveHost on

   <Proxy *>
      Order deny,allow
      Allow from all

<VirtualHost MY_IP:443>
  DocumentRoot /home/gitlab/gitlab/public
  ErrorLog /var/log/httpd/gitlab_error_log
  CustomLog /var/log/httpd/gitlab_access_log combined

  <Proxy balancer://unicornservers>

  <Directory /home/gitlab/gitlab/public>
    AllowOverride All
    Options -MultiViews

  RewriteEngine on
  RewriteRule ^/(.*)$ balancer://unicornservers%{REQUEST_URI} [P,QSA,L]

  ProxyPass /uploads !
  ProxyPass / balancer://unicornservers/
  ProxyPassReverse / balancer://unicornservers/
  ProxyPreserveHost on

   <Proxy *>
      Order deny,allow
      Allow from all

  SSLEngine on
  SSLCertificateFile /home/gitlab/gitlab/ssl.cert
  SSLCertificateKeyFile /home/gitlab/gitlab/ssl.key

Enable host and start unicorn

Enable your Gitlab virtual host and reload Apache:

Include conf/vhosts/gitlab

Finally start unicorn:

# cd /home/gitlab/gitlab
# sudo -u gitlab bundle exec unicorn_rails -c config/unicorn.rb -E production -D

systemd support

Note that you don't need the systemd units to launch shell scripts as suggested by the gitlab authors. Just make sure the ExecStart line points to the full path of the **bundle** executable.



Description=GitLab Puma Server


ExecStart=/usr/bin/bundle exec "puma -C /home/git/gitlab/config/puma.rb -e production"
ExecReload=/bin/kill -HUP $MAINPID
ExecStop=/bin/kill -QUIT $MAINPID


Description=GitLab Sidekiq Server


ExecStart=/usr/bin/bundle exec rake sidekiq:start
ExecStop=/usr/bin/bundle exec rake sidekiq:stop


Also see:

Useful Tips

Hook into /var

 sudo mkdir -m700 /var/log/gitlab /var/tmp/gitlab
 sudo chown gitlab:gitlab /var/log/gitlab /var/tmp/gitlab
 sudo -u gitlab -i
 cd ~/gitlab
 d=log; mv $d/* /var/$d/gitlab; rm -f $d/.gitkeep; rm -r $d && ln -s /var/$d/gitlab $d
 d=tmp; mv $d/* /var/$d/gitlab; rm -f $d/.gitkeep; rm -r $d && ln -s /var/$d/gitlab $d

Hidden options

Go to Gitlab's home directory

# cd /home/gitlab/gitlab

and run

# rake -T | grep gitlab

These are the options so far:

rake gitlab:app:backup_create      # GITLAB | Create a backup of the gitlab system
rake gitlab:app:backup_restore     # GITLAB | Restore a previously created backup
rake gitlab:app:enable_automerge   # GITLAB | Enable auto merge
rake gitlab:app:setup              # GITLAB | Setup production application
rake gitlab:app:status             # GITLAB | Check gitlab installation status
rake gitlab:gitolite:update_hooks  # GITLAB | Rewrite hooks for repos
rake gitlab:gitolite:update_keys   # GITLAB | Rebuild each key at gitolite config
rake gitlab:gitolite:update_repos  # GITLAB | Rebuild each project at gitolite config
rake gitlab:test                   # GITLAB | Run both cucumber & rspec

Backup and restore

Create a backup of the gitlab system:

# sudo -u gitlab -H rake RAILS_ENV=production gitlab:backup:create

Restore the previously created backup file /home/gitlab/gitlab/tmp/backups/20130125_11h35_1359131740_gitlab_backup.tar:

# sudo -u gitlab -H rake RAILS_ENV=production gitlab:backup:restore BACKUP=/home/gitlab/gitlab/tmp/backups/20130125_11h35_1359131740
Note: Backup folder is set in conig.yml. Check #Application_specific_settings.

Update Gitlab

When a new version is out follow the instructions at Github wiki. A new release is out every 22nd of a month.

Migrate from sqlite to mysql

Get latest code as described in #Update_Gitlab. Save data.

# cd /home/gitlab/gitlab
# sudo -u gitlab bundle exec rake db:data:dump RAILS_ENV=production

Follow #Mysql instructions and then setup the database.

# sudo -u gitlab bundle exec rake db:setup RAILS_ENV=production

Finally restore old data.

# sudo -u gitlab bundle exec rake db:data:load RAILS_ENV=production

Running GitLab with rvm

To run gitlab with rvm first you have to set up an rvm:

 curl -L | bash -s stable --ruby=1.9.3
Note: Version 1.9.3 is currently recommended to avoid some compatibility issues.

For the complete installation you will want to be the final user (e.g. git) so make sure to switch to this user and activate your rvm:

 su - git
 source "$HOME/.rvm/scripts/rvm"

Then continue with the installation instructions from above. However, the systemd scripts will not work this way, because the environment for the rvm is not activated. The recommendation here is to create to separate shell scripts for puma and sidekiq to activate the environment and then start the service:
source `/home/git/.rvm/bin/rvm 1.9.3 do rvm env --path`
RAILS_ENV=production bundle exec puma -C "/home/git/gitlab/config/puma.rb"
source `/home/git/.rvm/bin/rvm 1.9.3 do rvm env --path`
case $1 in
        bundle exec rake sidekiq:start RAILS_ENV=production
        bundle exec rake sidekiq:stop RAILS_ENV=production
        echo "Usage $0 {start|stop}"

Then modify the above systemd files so they use these scripts. Modify the given lines:

ExecStart=/home/git/bin/ start
ExecStop=/home/git/bin/ stop


Sometimes things may not work as expected. Be sure to visit the Trouble Shooting Guide.

See also