GitLab Documentation

GitLab Pages Administration

Note: This feature was first introduced in GitLab EE 8.3. Custom CNAMEs with TLS support were introduced in GitLab EE 8.5.


This document describes how to set up the latest GitLab Pages feature. Make sure to read the changelog if you are upgrading to a new GitLab version as it may include new features and changes needed to be made in your configuration.

If you are looking for ways to upload your static content in GitLab Pages, you probably want to read the user documentation.

The GitLab Pages daemon

Starting from GitLab EE 8.5, GitLab Pages make use of the GitLab Pages daemon, a simple HTTP server written in Go that can listen on an external IP address and provide support for custom domains and custom certificates. The GitLab Pages Daemon supports dynamic certificates through SNI and exposes pages using HTTP2 by default.

Here is a brief list with what it is supported when using the pages daemon:

You are encouraged to read its README to fully understand how it works.

The GitLab Pages daemon and the case of custom domains

In the case of custom domains, the Pages daemon needs to listen on ports 80 and/or 443. For that reason, there is some flexibility in the way which you can set it up, so you basically have three choices:

  1. Run the pages daemon in the same server as GitLab, listening on a secondary IP
  2. Run the pages daemon in a separate server. In that case, the Pages path must also be present in the server that the pages daemon is installed, so you will have to share it via network.
  3. Run the pages daemon in the same server as GitLab, listening on the same IP but on different ports. In that case, you will have to proxy the traffic with a loadbalancer. If you choose that route note that you should use TCP load balancing for HTTPS. If you use TLS-termination (HTTPS-load balancing) the pages will not be able to be served with user provided certificates. For HTTP it's OK to use HTTP or TCP load balancing.

In this document, we will proceed assuming the first option. Let's begin by installing the pages daemon.

Install the Pages daemon

Source installations

cd /home/git
sudo -u git -H git clone https://gitlab.com/gitlab-org/gitlab-pages.git
cd gitlab-pages
sudo -u git -H git checkout v0.2.1
sudo -u git -H make

Omnibus installations

The gitlab-pages daemon is included in the Omnibus package.

Configuration

There are multiple ways to set up GitLab Pages according to what URL scheme you are willing to support.

Configuration prerequisites

In the next section you will find all possible scenarios to choose from.

In either scenario, you will need:

  1. To use the GitLab Pages daemon
  2. A separate domain
  3. A separate Nginx configuration file which needs to be explicitly added in the server under which GitLab EE runs (Omnibus does that automatically)
  4. (Optional) A wildcard certificate for that domain if you decide to serve pages under HTTPS
  5. (Optional but recommended) Shared runners so that your users don't have to bring their own

Configuration scenarios

Before proceeding with setting up GitLab Pages, you have to decide which route you want to take.

The possible scenarios are depicted in the table below.

URL scheme Option Wildcard certificate Custom domain with HTTP support Custom domain with HTTPS support Secondary IP
http://page.example.io 1 no no no no
https://page.example.io 1 yes no no no
http://page.example.io and http://page.com 2 no yes no yes
https://page.example.io and https://page.com 2 yes redirects to HTTPS yes yes

As you see from the table above, each URL scheme comes with an option:

  1. Pages enabled, daemon is enabled and NGINX will proxy all requests to the daemon. Pages daemon doesn't listen to the outside world.
  2. Pages enabled, daemon is enabled AND pages has external IP support enabled. In that case, the pages daemon is running, NGINX still proxies requests to the daemon but the daemon is also able to receive requests from the outside world. Custom domains and TLS are supported.

DNS configuration

GitLab Pages expect to run on their own virtual host. In your DNS server/provider you need to add a wildcard DNS A record pointing to the host that GitLab runs. For example, an entry would look like this:

*.example.io. 1800 IN A 1.2.3.4

where example.io is the domain under which GitLab Pages will be served and 1.2.3.4 is the IP address of your GitLab instance.

You should not use the GitLab domain to serve user pages. For more information see the security section.

Setting up GitLab Pages

Below are the four scenarios that are described in #configuration-scenarios.

Custom domains with HTTPS support

Source installations:

  1. Install the pages daemon
  2. Edit gitlab.yml to look like the example below. You need to change the host to the FQDN under which GitLab Pages will be served. Set external_http and external_https to the secondary IP on which the pages daemon will listen for connections:

     ## GitLab Pages
     pages:
       enabled: true
       # The location where pages are stored (default: shared/pages).
       # path: shared/pages
    
       host: example.io
       port: 443
       https: true
    
       external_http: 1.1.1.1:80
       external_https: 1.1.1.1:443
    
  3. Edit /etc/default/gitlab and set gitlab_pages_enabled to true in order to enable the pages daemon. In gitlab_pages_options the -pages-domain, -listen-http and -listen-https must match the host, external_http and external_https settings that you set above respectively. The -root-cert and -root-key settings are the wildcard TLS certificates of the example.io domain:

    gitlab_pages_enabled=true
    gitlab_pages_options="-pages-domain example.io -pages-root $app_root/shared/pages -listen-proxy 127.0.0.1:8090 -listen-http 1.1.1.1:80 -listen-https 1.1.1.1:443 -root-cert /path/to/example.io.crt -root-key /path/to/example.io.key
    
  4. Make sure to configure NGINX properly.

  5. Restart GitLab


Omnibus installations:

  1. Edit /etc/gitlab/gitlab.rb:

    pages_external_url "https://example.io"
    nginx['listen_addresses'] = ['1.1.1.1']
    pages_nginx['enable'] = false
    gitlab_pages['cert'] = "/etc/gitlab/ssl/example.io.crt"
    gitlab_pages['cert_key'] = "/etc/gitlab/ssl/example.io.key"
    gitlab_pages['external_http'] = '1.1.1.2:80'
    gitlab_pages['external_https'] = '1.1.1.2:443'
    

    where 1.1.1.1 is the primary IP address that GitLab is listening to and 1.1.1.2 the secondary IP where the GitLab Pages daemon listens to. Read more at the NGINX configuration for custom domains section.

  2. Reconfigure GitLab

Custom domains without HTTPS support

Source installations:

  1. Install the pages daemon
  2. Edit gitlab.yml to look like the example below. You need to change the host to the FQDN under which GitLab Pages will be served. Set external_http to the secondary IP on which the pages daemon will listen for connections:

     pages:
       enabled: true
       # The location where pages are stored (default: shared/pages).
       # path: shared/pages
    
       host: example.io
       port: 80
       https: false
    
       external_http: 1.1.1.1:80
    
  3. Edit /etc/default/gitlab and set gitlab_pages_enabled to true in order to enable the pages daemon. In gitlab_pages_options the -pages-domain and -listen-http must match the host and external_http settings that you set above respectively:

    gitlab_pages_enabled=true
    gitlab_pages_options="-pages-domain example.io -pages-root $app_root/shared/pages -listen-proxy 127.0.0.1:8090 -listen-http 1.1.1.1:80"
    
  4. Make sure to configure NGINX properly.

  5. Restart GitLab


Omnibus installations:

  1. Edit /etc/gitlab/gitlab.rb:

    pages_external_url "http://example.io"
    nginx['listen_addresses'] = ['1.1.1.1']
    pages_nginx['enable'] = false
    gitlab_pages['external_http'] = '1.1.1.2:80'
    

    where 1.1.1.1 is the primary IP address that GitLab is listening to and 1.1.1.2 the secondary IP where the GitLab Pages daemon listens to. Read more at the NGINX configuration for custom domains section.

  2. Reconfigure GitLab

Wildcard HTTP domain without custom domains

Source installations:

  1. Install the pages daemon
  2. Go to the GitLab installation directory:

     cd /home/git/gitlab
    
  3. Edit gitlab.yml and under the pages setting, set enabled to true and the host to the FQDN under which GitLab Pages will be served:

     ## GitLab Pages
     pages:
       enabled: true
       # The location where pages are stored (default: shared/pages).
       # path: shared/pages
    
       host: example.io
       port: 80
       https: false
    
  4. Make sure to configure NGINX properly.

  5. Restart GitLab


Omnibus installations:

  1. Set the external URL for GitLab Pages in /etc/gitlab/gitlab.rb:

    pages_external_url 'http://example.io'
    
  2. Reconfigure GitLab

Wildcard HTTPS domain without custom domains

Source installations:

  1. Install the pages daemon
  2. In gitlab.yml, set the port to 443 and https to true:

     ## GitLab Pages
     pages:
       enabled: true
       # The location where pages are stored (default: shared/pages).
       # path: shared/pages
    
       host: example.io
       port: 443
       https: true
    
  3. Make sure to configure NGINX properly.


Omnibus installations:

  1. Place the certificate and key inside /etc/gitlab/ssl
  2. In /etc/gitlab/gitlab.rb specify the following configuration:

    pages_external_url 'https://example.io'
    
    pages_nginx['redirect_http_to_https'] = true
    pages_nginx['ssl_certificate'] = "/etc/gitlab/ssl/pages-nginx.crt"
    pages_nginx['ssl_certificate_key'] = "/etc/gitlab/ssl/pages-nginx.key"
    

    where pages-nginx.crt and pages-nginx.key are the SSL cert and key, respectively.

  3. Reconfigure GitLab

NGINX configuration

Depending on your setup, you will need to make some changes to NGINX. Specifically you must change the domain name and the IP address where NGINX listens to. Read the following sections for more details.

NGINX configuration files

Copy the gitlab-pages-ssl Nginx configuration file:

sudo cp lib/support/nginx/gitlab-pages-ssl /etc/nginx/sites-available/gitlab-pages-ssl.conf
sudo ln -sf /etc/nginx/sites-{available,enabled}/gitlab-pages-ssl.conf

Replace gitlab-pages-ssl with gitlab-pages if you are not using SSL.

NGINX configuration for custom domains

If you are not using custom domains ignore this section.

In the case of custom domains, if you have the secondary IP address configured on the same server as GitLab, you need to change all NGINX configs to listen on the first IP address.

Source installations:

  1. Edit all GitLab related configs in /etc/nginx/site-available/ and replace 0.0.0.0 with 1.1.1.1, where 1.1.1.1 the primary IP where GitLab listens to.
  2. Restart NGINX

Omnibus installations:

  1. Edit /etc/gitlab/gilab.rb:

    nginx['listen_addresses'] = ['1.1.1.1']
    
  2. Reconfigure GitLab

NGINX caveats

Be extra careful when setting up the domain name in the NGINX config. You must not remove the backslashes.

If your GitLab pages domain is example.io, replace:

server_name ~^.*\.YOUR_GITLAB_PAGES\.DOMAIN$;

with:

server_name ~^.*\.example\.io$;

If you are using a subdomain, make sure to escape all dots (.) except from the first one with a backslash (). For example pages.example.io would be:

server_name ~^.*\.pages\.example\.io$;

Set maximum pages size

The maximum size of the unpacked archive per project can be configured in the Admin area under the Application settings in the Maximum size of pages (MB). The default is 100MB.

Change storage path

Source installations:

  1. Pages are stored by default in /home/git/gitlab/shared/pages. If you wish to store them in another location you must set it up in gitlab.yml under the pages section:

     pages:
       enabled: true
       # The location where pages are stored (default: shared/pages).
       path: /mnt/storage/pages
    
  2. Restart GitLab

Omnibus installations:

  1. Pages are stored by default in /var/opt/gitlab/gitlab-rails/shared/pages. If you wish to store them in another location you must set it up in /etc/gitlab/gitlab.rb:

     gitlab_rails['pages_path'] = "/mnt/storage/pages"
    
  2. Reconfigure GitLab

Backup

Pages are part of the regular backup so there is nothing to configure.

Security

You should strongly consider running GitLab pages under a different hostname than GitLab to prevent XSS attacks.

Changelog

GitLab Pages were first introduced in GitLab EE 8.3. Since then, many features where added, like custom CNAME and TLS support, and many more are likely to come. Below is a brief changelog. If no changes were introduced or a version is missing from the changelog, assume that the documentation is the same as the latest previous version.


GitLab 8.5 (documentation)


GitLab 8.4

No new changes.


GitLab 8.3 (source docs, Omnibus docs)