Installing GitLabHQ on Debian

Posted on the January 30th, 2012 under Linux,Ruby on Rails,Tutorials by John

Just a few notes from getting GitLabHQ up and running on Debian.

Used the following as a reference, however that is geared toward Ubuntu (and most of it applies) Depending upon your situation you may want to skip some of those steps such as installing ruby (I’m using RVM) and using apache…

If you have not done so already, su to root and add apt-get install sudo.

The documentation on that link is assuming you using ubuntu which uses the admin group for sudo access, and by default on debian it the sudo group. You can either edit the /etc/sudoers and add the admin group or just change the first step to the following:

sudo useradd -s /bin/bash -m -G sudo gitlabhq
sudo passwd gitlabhq
Follow the rest of the instructions (ignoring ruby if you have RVM installed)…

There is one little typo where the guide tells you to edit the gitlab.yml file under “Configure GitLabHQ” The correct path is:


In my case I wanted to use MySQL instead of SQLite, so I went ahead and edited the database.yml file to mysql… Added the mysql2 gem to the Gemfile then ran the following commands:

bundle install –without development test
bundle exec rake db:setup RAILS_ENV=production
bundle exec rake db:seed_fu RAILS_ENV=production

On my Dev server I’m running apache with passenger, so I added a new site pointing to the public directory of the gitlabhq user that was created during the process and fired up the url. Everything seems to be working fine, I’ll update this page as I get to play around a bit. So far it seems solid, comitted my first project and update.

My main reason for installing this was to avoid the costs of using one of the git hosting sites. I couldn’t see paying for it when I’d like to create a whole bunch of repositories for testing and side projects, cost wise it just didn’t make sense.

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