How to Unbundle nginx from Omnibus GitLab for Serving Multiple Websites

Omnibus GitLab is a software package (or software stack) that allows you to easily install and run GitLab on your Linode. This guide walks you through the process of installing and setting up your own nginx server on a typical Omnibus installation. Using the method outlined here, you are not forced to use Omnibus’s default settings, and can create as many virtual hosts as you need for hosting multiple websites and apps on the same server as your GitLab.

Preconfigured software stacks sometimes bring a series of challenges to those who need to customize specific settings. If you require more control over your installation, consider installing GitLab from source. This application stack could benefit from large amounts of disk space, so also consider using our Block Storage service with this setup.

Before You BeginPermalink

  1. Familiarize yourself with Linode’s Getting Started guide and complete the steps for setting your Linode’s hostname and timezone.
  2. Complete the sections of our Securing Your Server guide to create a standard user account, harden SSH access and remove unnecessary network services.
  3. This guide has been tested with Ubuntu 14.04 LTS and 16.04 LTS. Some commands will be slightly different for each version, so be sure to read each step carefully for version-specific instructions.
  4. Update your system:
    sudo apt-get update && sudo apt-get upgrade


This guide is written for a non-root user. Commands that require elevated privileges are prefixed with sudo. If you’re not familiar with the sudo command, visit our Users and Groups guide for more information.

Install Omnibus GitLabPermalink

If you’re already running an Omnibus GitLab environment upgrade to the newest version and proceed to the next section, Unbundle nginx from Omnibus. If you’re installing GitLab for the first time, continue with the steps in this section.

Note that nginx cannot be disabled in older versions of GitLab Community Edition (CE). If you currently have an older version of GitLab CE installed, we recommend that you upgrade incrementally to avoid issues.

  1. Install the dependencies:
    sudo apt-get install curl openssh-server ca-certificates postfix
  2. While installing Postfix, you’ll be asked to configure a few basic settings. On the first ncursesscreen, select Internet Site as the mail configuration. On the second screen, enter your fully qualified domain name (FQDN). This will be used to send email to users when configuring new accounts and resetting passwords. The rest of the mail options will be configured automatically.
  3. Add the GitLab CE repository and install the gitlab-ce package:
    curl -sS | sudo bash
    sudo apt-get install gitlab-ce

    You can view the contents of the script in its entirety on the GitLab website if you’re hesitant to run it sight-unseen. The GitLab downloads page also contains alternative download methods if you’re still not comfortable running their script.

Unbundle nginx from Omnibus GitLabPermalink

  1. To unbundle nginx from GitLab, we’ll need to disable the version included in the Omnibus package. Add the following lines to /etc/gitlab/gitlab.rb: