Configure TLS for the GitLab chart

This chart is capable of doing TLS termination using the NGINX Ingress Controller. You have the choice of how to acquire the TLS certificates for your deployment. Extensive details can be found in global Ingress settings.

Option 1: cert-manager and Let’s Encrypt

Let’s Encrypt is a free, automated, and open Certificate Authority. Certificates can be automatically requested using various tools. This chart comes ready to integrate with a popular choice cert-manager.

If you are already using cert-manager, you can use global.ingress.annotations to configure appropriate annotations for your cert-manager deployment.

If you don’t already have cert-manager installed in your cluster, you can install and configure it as a dependency of this chart.

Internal cert-manager and Issuer

helm repo update
helm dep update
helm install gitlab gitlab/gitlab \

Installing cert-manager is controlled by the certmanager.install setting, and using it in the charts is controlled by the global.ingress.configureCertmanager setting. Both of these are true by default, so only the issuer email needs to be provided by default.

External cert-manager and internal Issuer

It is possible to make use of an external cert-manager but provide an Issuer as a part of this chart.

helm install gitlab gitlab/gitlab \
  --set certmanager.install=false \
  --set \
  --set global.ingress.annotations."kubernetes\.io/tls-acme"=true

External cert-manager and Issuer (external)

To make use of an external cert-manager and Issuer resource you must provide several items, so that self-signed certificates are not activated.

  1. Annotations to activate the external cert-manager (see documentation for further details)
  2. Names of TLS secrets for each service (this deactivates self-signed behaviors)
helm install gitlab gitlab/gitlab \
  --set certmanager.install=false \
  --set global.ingress.configureCertmanager=false \
  --set global.ingress.annotations."kubernetes\.io/tls-acme"=true \
  --set gitlab.webservice.ingress.tls.secretName=RELEASE-gitlab-tls \
  --set registry.ingress.tls.secretName=RELEASE-registry-tls \
  --set minio.ingress.tls.secretName=RELEASE-minio-tls \
  --set gitlab.kas.ingress.tls.secretName=RELEASE-kas-tls

Option 2: Use your own wildcard certificate

Add your full chain certificate and key to the cluster as a Secret, e.g.:

kubectl create secret tls <tls-secret-name> --cert=<path/to-full-chain.crt> --key=<path/to.key>

Include the option to

helm install gitlab gitlab/gitlab \
  --set certmanager.install=false \
  --set global.ingress.configureCertmanager=false \
  --set global.ingress.tls.secretName=<tls-secret-name>

Use AWS ACM to manage certificates

If you are using AWS ACM to create your wildcard certificate, it is not possible to specify it via secret because ACM certificates cannot be downloaded. Instead, specify them via nginx-ingress.controller.service.annotations:

        ... arn:aws:acm:{region}:{user id}:certificate/{id}

Option 3: Use individual certificate per service

Add your full chain certificates to the cluster as secrets, and then pass those secret names to each Ingress.

helm install gitlab gitlab/gitlab \
  --set certmanager.install=false \
  --set global.ingress.configureCertmanager=false \
  --set global.ingress.tls.enabled=true \
  --set gitlab.webservice.ingress.tls.secretName=RELEASE-gitlab-tls \
  --set registry.ingress.tls.secretName=RELEASE-registry-tls \
  --set minio.ingress.tls.secretName=RELEASE-minio-tls \
  --set gitlab.kas.ingress.tls.secretName=RELEASE-kas-tls
If you are configuring your GitLab instance to talk with other services, it may be necessary to provide the certificate chains for those services to GitLab through the Helm chart as well.

Option 4: Use auto-generated self-signed wildcard certificate

These charts also provide the capability to provide a auto-generated self-signed wildcard certificate. This can be useful in environments where Let’s Encrypt is not an option, but security via SSL is still desired. This functionality is provided by the shared-secrets job.

Note: The gitlab-runner chart does not function properly with self-signed certificates. We recommend disabling it, as shown below.

helm install gitlab gitlab/gitlab \
  --set certmanager.install=false \
  --set global.ingress.configureCertmanager=false \
  --set gitlab-runner.install=false

The shared-secrets job will then produce a CA certificate, wildcard certificate, and a certificate chain for use by all externally accessible services. The secrets containing these will be RELEASE-wildcard-tls, RELEASE-wildcard-tls-ca, and RELEASE-wildcard-tls-chain. The RELEASE-wildcard-tls-ca contains the public CA certificate that can be distributed to users and systems that will access the deployed GitLab instance. The RELEASE-wildcard-tls-chain contains both the CA certificate and the wildcard certificate which you can also use directly for GitLab Runner via gitlab-runner.certsSecretName=RELEASE-wildcard-tls-chain.

TLS requirement for GitLab Pages

For GitLab Pages with TLS support, a wildcard certificate applicable for *.<pages domain> (default value of <pages domain> is pages.<base domain>) is required.

Because a wild card certificate is required, it can not be automatically created by cert-manager and Let’s Encrypt. cert-manager is therefore by default disabled for GitLab Pages (via gitlab-pages.ingress.configureCertmanager), so you will have to provide your own k8s Secret containing a wild card certificate. If you have an external cert-manager configured using global.ingress.annotations, you probably also want to override such annotations in gitlab-pages.ingress.annotations.

By default, the name of this secret is <RELEASE>-pages-tls. A different name can be specified using the gitlab.gitlab-pages.ingress.tls.secretName setting:

helm install gitlab gitlab/gitlab \
  --set global.pages.enabled=true \
  --set gitlab.gitlab-pages.ingress.tls.secretName=<secret name>


This section contains possible solutions for problems you might encounter.

SSL termination errors

If you are using Let’s Encrypt as your TLS provider and you are facing certificate-related errors, you have a few options to debug this:

  1. Check your domain with letsdebug for any possible errors.
  2. If letsdebug returns not errors, see if there’s a problem related to cert-manager:

    kubectl describe certificate,order,challenge --all-namespaces

    If you see any errors, try removing the certificate object to force requesting a new one.

  3. If nothing of the above works, consider reinstalling the cert-manager.