How to Secure GitLab Server with Let’s Encrypt SSL

How to Secure GitLab Server with Let’s Encrypt SSL

We always say, Security first. It should be the first priority to keep your hard work safe from the hackers. This tutorial will take few minutes to secure Gitlab server using Let’s Encrypt SSL certificates. Let’s Encrypt provides free SSL certificates to secure your domains and an easy way to auto updates.

This tutorial will help you to secure Gitlab service with Let’s Encrypt SSL certificate with enabling the auto renew feature. If you are going with a fresh installation have a look at below guides.


Login to your Gitlab system with a sudo privileged account.

Also make sure to create an A Record points your domain/subdomain to the public IP address of your Gitab server. It is recommended to complete the let’s encrypt validation for issuing a new certification. For example, You need to configure your Gitlab server to access with So make A record in DNS for pointing to server ip address.

Configure Let’s Encrypt SSL with Gitlab

Gitlab keeps the configuration files under /etc/gitlab directory. You can edit the main configuration file /etc/gitlab/gitlab.rb in a text editor of your choice.

sudo vim /etc/gitlab/gitlab.rb 

Make the following changes:

  • First change the external_url setting with domain start with https.
    external_url ""
  • Add or update the following entries to the configuration file. Set letsencrypt[‘enable’] to true, this will request a SSL certificate and configure to the Gitlab instance. You can also provide an optional contact email used by lets encrypt authority to send alerts for the ssl certificates.
    # Enable the Let's encrypt SSL
    letsencrypt['enable'] = true
    # This is optional to get SSL related alerts
    letsencrypt['contact_emails'] = ['']
  • Also configure Gitlab to renew SSL certificate automatically on a regular interval.
    # Enable the auto renew feature
    letsencrypt['auto_renew'] = true
    # This example renews every 7th day at 12:30
    letsencrypt['auto_renew_hour'] = "12"
    letsencrypt['auto_renew_minute'] = "30"
    letsencrypt['auto_renew_day_of_month'] = "*/7"

Save the configuration file and exit from editor.

Next, run the reconfigure command to apply changes to Gitlab server.

sudo gitlab-ctl reconfigure 

This will take some time to complete the installation. At the end, you will see a message “gitlab Reconfigured!” on your screen.

Reconfigure Gitlab on Linux

Verify SSL

Access the Gitlab web interface in a web browser. This will automatically redirects you to secure URL.

Secure Gitlab with Let's Encrypt SSL

That’s it. You have successfully configured let’s encrypt SSL on Gitlab.


In this tutorial, you have learned to configure Let’s Encrypt SSL certificate on Gitlab instance. Also enable to auto renew certificate on a regular interval.

The post How to Secure GitLab Server with Let’s Encrypt SSL appeared first on TecAdmin.

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