How to test the GitLab native integration on a local dev machine

This specializes and augments the official admin docs for the integration with gotchas when running on localhost. It assumes you want to develop/debug the Sourcegraph side of this relationship so therefore will run the dev/ command for Sourcegraph and Gitlab CE in a Docker container.

Sourcegraph instance

Launch a Sourcegraph instance with dev/ or enterprise/dev/

If you need a TLS endpoint or reverse-proxy for your Sourcegraph instance (e.g. to example to debug secure-only cookies), Caddy and ngrok are recommended.

Gitlab instance

Use Docker to run a local GitLab CE instance:

docker run --hostname localhost -p 4080:4080  \
        --name gitlab \
        --volume ~/.sourcegraph-gitlab/gitlab-disk/config:/etc/gitlab \
        --volume /Users/exampledev/sourcegraph-docker/gitlab-disk/logs:/var/log/gitlab \
        --volume /Users/exampledev/sourcegraph-docker/gitlab-disk/data:/var/opt/gitlab \

Once Gitlab is running it will set up configs in ~/sourcegraph-gitlab/gitlab-disk/config. We need to tell it its external URL, so go into that directory and open gitlab.rb in an editor. Uncomment and change the external_url value to http://localhost:4080. You have to restart GitLab by running the command: docker restart gitlab.

At this point you can add content to Gitlab to make it available for testing. Create a new project and clone the repo locally to add some Go files to it (we want to test code navigation for example).

On the Sourcegraph side add the Gitlab instance as an external service and check that the repo cloned.

Enable the Sourcegraph native integration

The two relevant docs are:

You have to enable Sourcegraph integration in the rails console. Open a shell in the Gitlab container and execute gitlab-rails console. At the prompt enter Feature.enable(:sourcegraph).

Follow the remaining steps from both docs.


Test code intelligence is working by viewing a file in GitLab and hovering over a token. If it doesn’t appear to be working, open the browser developer tools console and wait for a “code view added” log message. If this does not appear after 10 or so seconds, code intelligence has not been added to any code view(s).

Clicking Go to definition should keep you inside GitLab, and ensure that it also takes you to the line where the token is defined.

Be sure to test code intelligence works in merge requests too! To create a merge request (as these will not be migrated from another code host), view a branch, then create a merge request.

Also test that code intelligence works on PRs, as well as viewing code files. Clicking on the hover will take you to the Sourcegraph instance to that point in code.