Backup and Restore

Gitea currently has a dump command that will save the installation to a zip file. This file can be unpacked and used to restore an instance.

Table of Contents

Backup Command (dump)

Switch to the user running Gitea: su git. Run ./gitea dump -c /path/to/app.ini in the Gitea installation directory. There should be some output similar to the following:

2016/12/27 22:32:09 Creating tmp work dir: /tmp/gitea-dump-417443001
2016/12/27 22:32:09 Dumping local repositories.../home/git/gitea-repositories
2016/12/27 22:32:22 Dumping database...
2016/12/27 22:32:22 Packing dump files...
2016/12/27 22:32:34 Removing tmp work dir: /tmp/gitea-dump-417443001
2016/12/27 22:32:34 Finish dumping in file

Inside the file, will be the following:

  • app.ini - Optional copy of configuration file if originally stored outside of the default custom/ directory
  • custom - All config or customization files in custom/.
  • data - Data directory in <GITEA_WORK_DIR>, except sessions if you are using file session. This directory includes attachments, avatars, lfs, indexers, sqlite file if you are using sqlite.
  • gitea-db.sql - SQL dump of database
  • - Complete copy of the repository directory.
  • log/ - Various logs. They are not needed for a recovery or migration.

Intermediate backup files are created in a temporary directory specified either with the --tempdir command-line parameter or the TMPDIR environment variable.

Using Docker (dump)

There are a few caveats for using the dump command with Docker.

The command has to be executed with the RUN_USER = <OS_USERNAME> specified in gitea/conf/app.ini; and, for the zipping of the backup folder to occur without permission error the command docker exec must be executed inside of the --tempdir.


docker exec -u <OS_USERNAME> -it -w <--tempdir> $(docker ps -qf "name=<NAME_OF_DOCKER_CONTAINER>") bash -c '/app/gitea/gitea dump -c </path/to/app.ini>'

*Note: --tempdir refers to the temporary directory of the docker environment used by Gitea; if you have not specified a custom --tempdir, then Gitea uses /tmp or the TMPDIR environment variable of the docker container. For --tempdir adjust your docker exec command options accordingly.

The result should be a file, stored in the --tempdir specified, along the lines of:

Restore Command (restore)

There is currently no support for a recovery command. It is a manual process that mostly involves moving files to their correct locations and restoring a database dump.


cd gitea-dump-1610949662
mv data/conf/app.ini /etc/gitea/conf/app.ini
mv data/* /var/lib/gitea/data/
mv log/* /var/lib/gitea/log/
mv repos/* /var/lib/gitea/repositories/
chown -R gitea:gitea /etc/gitea/conf/app.ini /var/lib/gitea

# mysql
mysql --default-character-set=utf8mb4 -u$USER -p$PASS $DATABASE <gitea-db.sql
# sqlite3
sqlite3 $DATABASE_PATH <gitea-db.sql
# postgres
psql -U $USER -d $DATABASE < gitea-db.sql

service gitea restart

Repository git-hooks should be regenerated if installation method is changed (eg. binary -> Docker), or if Gitea is installed to a different directory than the previous installation.

With Gitea running, and from the directory Gitea’s binary is located, execute: ./gitea admin regenerate hooks

This ensures that application and configuration file paths in repository git-hooks are consistent and applicable to the current installation. If these paths are not updated, repository push actions will fail.