Install GitLab Runner on macOS

GitLab Runner can be installed and updated on macOS.


There are two methods for installing GitLab Runner on macOS:

Manual installation (official)

Note: For documentation on GitLab Runner 9 and earlier, visit this documentation.
  1. Download the binary for your system:

     sudo curl --output /usr/local/bin/gitlab-runner

    You can download a binary for every available version as described in Bleeding Edge - download any other tagged release.

  2. Give it permissions to execute:

     sudo chmod +x /usr/local/bin/gitlab-runner

The rest of commands execute as the user who will run the Runner.

  1. Register the Runner
  2. Install the Runner as service and start it:

     cd ~
     gitlab-runner install
     gitlab-runner start

Runner is installed and will be run after a system reboot.

Homebrew installation (alternative)

A Homebrew formula is available to install GitLab.

Caution: GitLab does not maintain the Homebrew formula.

To install GitLab Runner using Homebrew:

  1. Install the GitLab Runner.

     brew install gitlab-runner
  2. Install the Runner as a service and start it.

     brew services start gitlab-runner

Runner is installed and running.

Limitations on macOS

Note: The service needs to be installed from the Terminal by running its GUI interface as your current user. Only then will you be able to manage the service.

Currently, the only proven to work mode for macOS is running service in user-mode.

Since the service will be running only when the user is logged in, you should enable auto-login on your OSX machine.

The service will be launched as one of LaunchAgents. By using LaunchAgents, the builds will be able to do UI interactions, making it possible to run and test on the iOS simulator.

It’s worth noting that OSX also has LaunchDaemons, the services running completely in background. LaunchDaemons are run on system startup, but they don’t have the same access to UI interactions as LaunchAgents. You can try to run the Runner’s service as LaunchDaemon, but this mode of operation is not currently supported.

You can verify that the Runner created the service configuration file after executing the install command, by checking the ~/Library/LaunchAgents/gitlab-runner.plist file.

Manual update

  1. Stop the service:

     gitlab-runner stop
  2. Download the binary to replace the Runner’s executable:

     sudo curl -o /usr/local/bin/gitlab-runner

    You can download a binary for every available version as described in Bleeding Edge - download any other tagged release.

  3. Give it permissions to execute:

     sudo chmod +x /usr/local/bin/gitlab-runner
  4. Start the service:

     gitlab-runner start

Make sure that you read the FAQ section which describes some of the most common problems with GitLab Runner.

Upgrade the service file

In order to upgrade the LaunchAgent configuration, you need to uninstall and install the service:

gitlab-runner uninstall
gitlab-runner install
gitlab-runner start