Maintenance commands

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The following commands can be run after installation.

Get service status

Run sudo gitlab-ctl status to see the current state and uptime of each GitLab component.

The output will look similar to this:

run: nginx: (pid 972) 7s; run: log: (pid 971) 7s
run: postgresql: (pid 962) 7s; run: log: (pid 959) 7s
run: redis: (pid 964) 7s; run: log: (pid 963) 7s
run: sidekiq: (pid 967) 7s; run: log: (pid 966) 7s
run: puma: (pid 961) 7s; run: log: (pid 960) 7s

As a demonstration, the first line of the previous example can be interpreted as follows:

  • Nginx is the process name.
  • 972 is the process identifier.
  • NGINX has been running for 7 seconds (7s).
  • log indicates a svlogd logging process attached to the preceding process.
  • 971 is the process identifier for the logging process.
  • The logging process has been running for 7 seconds (7s).

Tail process logs

See settings/

Starting and stopping

After Omnibus GitLab is installed and configured, your server has a runit service directory (runsvdir) process running that gets started at boot via /etc/inittab or the /etc/init/gitlab-runsvdir.conf Upstart resource. You should not have to deal with the runsvdir process directly; you can use the gitlab-ctl front-end instead.

You can start, stop or restart GitLab and all of its components with the following commands.

# Start all GitLab components
sudo gitlab-ctl start

# Stop all GitLab components
sudo gitlab-ctl stop

# Restart all GitLab components
sudo gitlab-ctl restart

Note that on a single-core server it may take up to a minute to restart Puma and Sidekiq. Your GitLab instance will give a 502 error until Puma is up again.

It is also possible to start, stop or restart individual components.

sudo gitlab-ctl restart sidekiq

Puma does support almost zero-downtime reloads. These can be triggered as follows:

sudo gitlab-ctl hup puma

Note that you must wait for the hup command to finish. This could take some time. Leave the node out of the pool and do not restart services on the node where this is invoked until this completes. You also cannot use a Puma reload to update the Ruby runtime.

Puma has the following signals to control application behavior:

Signal Puma
HUP reopen log files defined, or stop the process to force restart
INT gracefully stops requests processing
USR1 restart workers in phases, a rolling restart, without config reload
USR2 restart workers and reload config
QUIT exit the main process

For Puma, gitlab-ctl hup puma will send a sequence of SIGINT and SIGTERM (if process does not restart) signals. Puma stops accepting new connections as soon as SIGINT is received. It finishes all running requests. Then runit restarts the service.

Invoking Rake tasks

To invoke a GitLab Rake task, use gitlab-rake. For example:

sudo gitlab-rake gitlab:check

Leave out sudo if you are the git user.

Contrary to with a traditional GitLab installation, there is no need to change the user or the RAILS_ENV environment variable; this is taken care of by the gitlab-rake wrapper script.

Starting a Rails console session

For more information, see Rails console.

Starting a PostgreSQL superuser psql session

If you need superuser access to the bundled PostgreSQL service you can use the gitlab-psql command. It takes the same arguments as the regular psql command.

# Superuser psql access to GitLab's database
sudo gitlab-psql -d gitlabhq_production

This will only work after you have run gitlab-ctl reconfigure at least once. The gitlab-psql command cannot be used to connect to a remote PostgreSQL server, nor to connect to a local non-Omnibus PostgreSQL server.

Starting a PostgreSQL superuser psql session in Geo tracking database

Similar to the previous command, if you need superuser access to the bundled Geo tracking database (geo-postgresql), you can use the gitlab-geo-psql. It takes the same arguments as the regular psql command. For HA, see more about the necessary arguments in: Checking Configuration

# Superuser psql access to GitLab's Geo tracking database
sudo gitlab-geo-psql -d gitlabhq_geo_production

Container Registry garbage collection

Container Registry can use considerable amounts of disk space. To clear up unused layers, the registry includes a garbage collect command.

Restrict users from logging into GitLab

If you need to temporarily restrict users from logging into GitLab, you can use sudo gitlab-ctl deploy-page up. When a user goes to your GitLab URL, they will be shown an arbitrary Deploy in progress page.

To remove the page, you simply run sudo gitlab-ctl deploy-page down. You can also check the status of the deploy page with sudo gitlab-ctl deploy-page status.

As a side note, if you would like to restrict logging into GitLab and restrict changes to projects, you can set projects as read-only , then put up the Deploy in progress page.

Rotate the secrets file

If required for security purposes, you can rotate the /etc/gitlab/gitlab-secrets.json secrets file. In this file:

  • Do not rotate the gitlab_rails secrets because it contains the database encryption keys. If this secret is rotated, you see the same behavior as when the secrets file is lost.
  • You can rotate all other secrets.

If you have multiple nodes in your GitLab environment, choose one of your Rails node to perform the initial steps.

To rotate the secrets:

  1. Verify that the database values can be decrypted and either make note of any decryption errors shown, or resolve them before proceeding.

  2. Recommended. Extract your current secrets for gitlab_rails. Save the output because you need this later:

    sudo grep "secret_key_base\|db_key_base\|otp_key_base\|encrypted_settings_key_base\|openid_connect_signing_key\|ci_jwt_signing_key" /etc/gitlab/gitlab-secrets.json
  3. Move your current secrets file to a different location:

    sudo mv /etc/gitlab/gitlab-secrets.json /etc/gitlab/gitlab-secrets.json.old
  4. Reconfigure GitLab. GitLab will then generate a new /etc/gitlab/gitlab-secrets.json file with new secret values.

  5. If you extracted the previous secrets for gitlab_rails, edit the new /etc/gitlab/gitlab-secrets.json file and replace the key/value pairs under gitlab_rails with the previous secrets output obtained earlier.

  6. Reconfigure GitLab again so the changes made to the secrets file are applied.

  7. Restart GitLab to ensure all services are using the new secrets.

  8. If you have multiple nodes in your GitLab environment, you must copy the secrets to all of your other nodes:

    1. On all other nodes, move your current secrets file to a different location:

      sudo mv /etc/gitlab/gitlab-secrets.json /etc/gitlab/gitlab-secrets.json.old
    2. Copy the new /etc/gitlab/gitlab-secrets.json file from your Rails node onto all of your other GitLab nodes.

    3. On all other nodes, reconfigure GitLab on each node.

    4. On all other nodes, restart GitLab on each node to ensure all services are using the new secrets.

    5. On all nodes, run a checksum match on the /etc/gitlab/gitlab-secrets.json file to confirm that the secrets match:

      sudo md5sum /etc/gitlab/gitlab-secrets.json
  9. Verify that the database values can be decrypted. The output should match with the previous execution.

  10. Confirm that GitLab is working as expected. If it is, it should be safe to delete the old secrets.