Using Bitwarden-rs without docker

Tuesday, 4 February 2020

I use a self-hosted bitwarden-rs to manage my passwords, and it works great except using docker to run it was using most of the RAM on my cheap VPS from Vultr. Since bitwarden-rs is just a rust program that uses around 16MB of RAM, it seemed overkill to have docker running around it using over 100MB.

I cloned the repository, checked out the latest tag and then ran

cargo build --release --features sqlite

You can use postgresql or mysql if you want but sqlite suites my needs as a single user just fine.

You then need the web UI. Since this is nodejs it takes a lot of RAM to build so I would recommend just getting the latest release from their web vault releases. The version I got was 2.12.0. Extract it to a folder web-fault.

mkdir web-vault
tar -xf bw_web_v2.12.0.tar.gz -C web-vault

I then setup what will be the app directory; I used /opt/bitwarden but you can use whatever you like.

mkdir /opt/bitwarden
cp bitwarden_rs/target/release/bitwarden_rs /opt/bitwarden/bitwarden_rs
cp -a web-vault/ /opt/bitwarden/web-vault/

You will need to run the bitwarden_rs application, but systemd makes this very easy. I setup /etc/systemd/system/bitwarden.service




and then enabled and ran it with systemctl enable –now bitwarden.service

Then you just need to have a web server to run it, preferably with some SSL support. This is how my nginx configuration looks for it.

server {
        listen 80;
        listen [::]:80;


        include letsencrypt/letsencrypt.conf;

        location / {
                return 301 https://$host$request_uri;


server {
        listen 443 ssl;
        listen [::]:443 ssl;

        ssl_certificate /etc/letsencrypt/live/;
        ssl_certificate_key /etc/letsencrypt/live/;
        include ssl/ssl.conf;


        location / {
                proxy_read_timeout 90;
                proxy_set_header X-Forwarded-For $remote_addr;
                proxy_set_header Host $http_host;
                proxy_pass http://localhost:8000/;

I made some extra conf files that all my domains source for nginx to easily manage Let’s Encrypt and SSL settings, see my blog post about it.

And now it should be done. Without a lot of effort you have saved yourself the hassle of running a docker container and are saving some precious memory.

Written Tuesday, 4 February 2020

Tagged with linux.

Categorized as “

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