Geo nodes Admin Area

You can configure various settings for GitLab Geo nodes. For more information, see Geo documentation.

On the primary node, go to Admin Area > Geo. On secondary nodes, go to Admin Area > Geo > Nodes.

Common settings

All Geo nodes have the following settings:

Setting Description
Primary This marks a Geo Node as primary node. There can be only one primary node; make sure that you first add the primary node and then all the others.
Name The unique identifier for the Geo node. Must match the setting gitlab_rails['geo_node_name'] in /etc/gitlab/gitlab.rb. The setting defaults to external_url with a trailing slash.
URL The instance’s user-facing URL.

The node you’re reading from is indicated with a green Current node label, and the primary node is given a blue Primary label. Remember that you can only make changes on the primary node!

Secondary node settings

Secondary nodes have a number of additional settings available:

Setting Description
Selective synchronization Enable Geo selective sync for this secondary node.
Repository sync capacity Number of concurrent requests this secondary node will make to the primary node when backfilling repositories.
File sync capacity Number of concurrent requests this secondary node will make to the primary node when backfilling files.

Geo backfill

Secondary nodes are notified of changes to repositories and files by the primary node, and will always attempt to synchronize those changes as quickly as possible.

Backfill is the act of populating the secondary node with repositories and files that existed before the secondary node was added to the database. Since there may be extremely large numbers of repositories and files, it’s infeasible to attempt to download them all at once, so GitLab places an upper limit on the concurrency of these operations.

How long the backfill takes is a function of the maximum concurrency, but higher values place more strain on the primary node. From GitLab 10.2, the limits are configurable. If your primary node has lots of surplus capacity, you can increase the values to complete backfill in a shorter time. If it’s under heavy load and backfill is reducing its availability for normal requests, you can decrease them.

Using a different URL for synchronization

The primary node’s Internal URL is used by secondary nodes to contact it (to sync repositories, for example). The name Internal URL distinguishes it from External URL which is used by users. Internal URL does not need to be a private address.

Internal URL defaults to External URL, but you can customize it under Admin Area > Geo > Nodes.

cautionWe recommend using an HTTPS connection while configuring the Geo nodes. To avoid breaking communication between primary and secondary nodes when using HTTPS, customize your Internal URL to point to a load balancer with TLS terminated at the load balancer.
cautionStarting with GitLab 13.3 and until 13.11, using an internal URL that is not accessible to the users will result in the OAuth authorization flow not working properly, as the users will get redirected to the internal URL instead of the external one.

Multiple secondary nodes behind a load balancer

In GitLab 11.11, secondary nodes can use identical external URLs as long as a unique name is set for each Geo node. The gitlab.rb setting gitlab_rails['geo_node_name'] must:

  • Be set for each GitLab instance that runs unicorn, sidekiq, or geo_logcursor.
  • Match a Geo node name.

The load balancer must use sticky sessions in order to avoid authentication failures and cross site request errors.