Part 3 - configuration options in a production setup

This contains instructions to configure specific aspects of your production setup depending on your needs.

Depending on your use-case and requirements, you may need to configure none, or only a subset of the following sections.

Redirect some traffic through a http(s) proxy

In case you wish to use http(s) proxies, you can add a configuration like this to the wire-server services in question:

Assuming your proxy can be reached from within Kubernetes at http://proxy:8080, add the following for each affected service (e.g. gundeck) to your Helm overrides in values/wire-server/values.yaml :

  # ...
    # ...
      httpProxy: "http://proxy:8080"
      httpsProxy: "http://proxy:8080"
        - "localhost"
        - ""
        - ""
        - "elasticsearch-external"
        - "cassandra-external"
        - "redis-ephemeral"
        - "fake-aws-sqs"
        - "fake-aws-dynamodb"
        - "fake-aws-sns"
        - "brig"
        - "cargohold"
        - "galley"
        - "gundeck"
        - "proxy"
        - "spar"
        - "federator"
        - "cannon"
        - "cannon-0.cannon.default"
        - "cannon-1.cannon.default"
        - "cannon-2.cannon.default"

Depending on your setup, you may need to repeat this for the other services like brig as well.

Enable push notifications using the public appstore / playstore mobile Wire clients

  1. You need to get in touch with us. Please talk to sales or customer support - see

  2. If a contract agreement has been reached, we can set up a separate AWS account for you containing the necessary AWS SQS/SNS setup to route push notifications through to the mobile apps. We will then forward some configuration / access credentials that looks like:

push_notification_settings = {
  "aws_account_id" = "REDACTED"
  "gundeck_access_key" = "REDACTED"
  "gundeck_access_secret" = "REDACTED"
  "notification_queue_name" = "<environment>-gundeck-events"
  "sns_endpoint" = "https://sns.<region>"
  "sqs_endpoint" = "https://sqs.<region>"

To make use of those, first test the credentials are correct, e.g. using the aws command-line tool (for more information on how to configure credentials, please refer to the official docs):

ENV=<environment> #e.g staging

aws sqs get-queue-url --queue-name "$ENV-gundeck-events"

You should get a result like this:

    "QueueUrl": "https://<region><aws-account-id>/<environment>-gundeck-events"

Then add them to your gundeck configuration overrides:

# in values/wire-server/values.yaml

   # ...
       queueName: # e.g. staging-gundeck-events
       account: # <aws-account-id>, e.g. 123456789
       region: # e.g. eu-central-1
       snsEndpoint: # e.g.
       sqsEndpoint: # e.g.
       arnEnv: # e.g. staging - this must match the environment name (first part of queueName)
# in values/wire-server/secrets.yaml

   # ...
     awsKeyId: CHANGE-ME
     awsSecretKey: CHANGE-ME

After making this change and applying it to gundeck (ensure gundeck pods have restarted to make use of the updated configuration - that should happen automatically), make sure to reset the push token on any mobile devices that you may have in use.

Blocking creation of personal users, new teams

There are some unauthenticated end-points that allow arbitrary users on the open internet to do things like create a new team. This is desired in the cloud, and not an issue on many on-prem solutions (eg. all of those that are not exposed to the global IP address space). However, if you run an on-prem setup that is open to the world, you may want to block this.

Brig has a server option for this:

  setRestrictUserCreation: true

If setRestrictUserCreation is true, creating new personal users or new teams on your instance from outside your backend installation is impossible. (If you want to be more technical: requests to /register that create a new personal account or a new team are answered with 403 forbidden.)

If you operate an instance with restricted user creation, you can still create new teams (and, if you really want to, personal users): see for examples.

You may want

  • more server resources to ensure high-availability

  • an email/SMTP server to send out registration emails

  • depending on your required functionality, you may or may not need an AWS account. See details about limitations without an AWS account in the following sections.

  • one or more people able to maintain the installation

  • official support by Wire (contact us)


As of 2020-08-10, the documentation sections below are partially out of date and need to be updated.

SMTP server

Assumptions: none


  • full control over email sending

You need:

  • SMTP credentials (to allow for email sending; prerequisite for registering users and running the smoketest)

How to configure:

  • if using a gmail account, ensure to enable ‘less secure apps’

  • Add user, SMTP server, connection type to values/wire-server’s values file under brig.config.smtp

  • Add password in secrets/wire-server’s secrets file under brig.secrets.smtpPassword

Load balancer on bare metal servers



  • Allows using a provided Load balancer for incoming traffic

  • SSL termination is done on the ingress controller

  • You can access your wire-server backend with given DNS names, over SSL and from anywhere in the internet

You need:

  • A kubernetes node with a public IP address (or internal, if you do not plan to expose the Wire backend over the Internet but we will assume you are using a public IP address)

  • DNS records for the different exposed addresses (the ingress depends on the usage of virtual hosts), namely:

    • nginz-https.<domain>

    • nginz-ssl.<domain>

    • assets.<domain>

    • webapp.<domain>

    • account.<domain>

    • teams.<domain>

  • A wildcard certificate for the different hosts (*.<domain>) - we assume you want to do SSL termination on the ingress controller


  • Note that there can be only a single load balancer, otherwise your cluster might become unstable

How to configure:

cp values/metallb/demo-values.example.yaml values/metallb/demo-values.yaml
cp values/nginx-ingress-services/demo-values.example.yaml values/nginx-ingress-services/demo-values.yaml
cp values/nginx-ingress-services/demo-secrets.example.yaml values/nginx-ingress-services/demo-secrets.yaml
  • Adapt values/metallb/demo-values.yaml to provide a list of public IP address CIDRs that your kubernetes nodes can bind to.

  • Adapt values/nginx-ingress-services/demo-values.yaml with correct URLs

  • Put your TLS cert and key into values/nginx-ingress-services/demo-secrets.yaml.

Install metallb (for more information see the docs):

helm upgrade --install --namespace metallb-system metallb wire/metallb \
    -f values/metallb/demo-values.yaml \
    --wait --timeout 1800

Install nginx-ingress-[controller,services]:

helm upgrade –install –namespace demo demo-nginx-ingress-controller wire/nginx-ingress-controller


helm upgrade –install –namespace demo demo-nginx-ingress-services wire/nginx-ingress-services

-f values/nginx-ingress-services/demo-values.yaml -f values/nginx-ingress-services/demo-secrets.yaml –wait

Now, create DNS records for the URLs configured above.

Load Balancer on cloud-provider


Upload the required certificates. Create and configure values/aws-ingress/demo-values.yaml from the examples.

helm upgrade --install --namespace demo demo-aws-ingress wire/aws-ingress \
    -f values/aws-ingress/demo-values.yaml \

To give your load balancers public DNS names, create and edit values/external-dns/demo-values.yaml, then run external-dns:

helm repo update
helm upgrade --install --namespace demo demo-external-dns stable/external-dns \
    --version 1.7.3 \
    -f values/external-dns/demo-values.yaml \

Things to note about external-dns:

  • There can only be a single external-dns chart installed (one per kubernetes cluster, not one per namespace). So if you already have one running for another namespace you probably don’t need to do anything.

  • You have to add the appropriate IAM permissions to your cluster (see the README).

  • Alternatively, use the AWS route53 console.

Other cloud providers

This information is not yet available. If you’d like to contribute by adding this information for your cloud provider, feel free to read the contributing guidelines and open a PR.

Real AWS services


  • You installed kubernetes and wire-server on AWS


  • Better availability guarantees and possibly better functionality of AWS services such as SQS and dynamoDB.

  • You can use ELBs in front of nginz for higher availability.

  • instead of using a smtp server and connect with SMTP, you may use SES. See configuration of brig and the useSES toggle.

You need:

  • An AWS account

How to configure:

  • Instead of using fake-aws charts, you need to set up the respective services in your account, create queues, tables etc. Have a look at the fake-aws-* charts; you’ll need to replicate a similar setup.

    • Once real AWS resources are created, adapt the configuration in the values and secrets files for wire-server to use real endpoints and real AWS keys. Look for comments including if using real AWS.

  • Creating AWS resources in a way that is easy to create and delete could be done using either terraform or pulumi. If you’d like to contribute by creating such automation, feel free to read the contributing guidelines and open a PR.

Persistence and high-availability

Currently, due to the way kubernetes and cassandra interact, cassandra cannot reliably be installed on kubernetes. Some people have tried, e.g. this project though at the time of writing (Nov 2018), this does not yet work as advertised. We recommend therefore to install cassandra, (possibly also elasticsearch and redis) separately, i.e. outside of kubernetes (using 3 nodes each).

For further higher-availability:

  • scale your kubernetes cluster to have separate etcd and master nodes (3 nodes each)

  • use 3 instead of 1 replica of each wire-server chart


For a production deployment, you should, as a minimum:

  • Ensure traffic between kubernetes nodes, etcd and databases are confined to a private network

  • Ensure kubernetes API is unreachable from the public internet (e.g. put behind VPN/bastion host or restrict IP range) to prevent kubernetes vulnerabilities from affecting you

  • Ensure your operating systems get security updates automatically

  • Restrict ssh access / harden sshd configuration

  • Ensure no other pods with public access than the main ingress are deployed on your cluster, since, in the current setup, pods have access to etcd values (and thus any secrets stored there, including secrets from other pods)

  • Ensure developers encrypt any secrets.yaml files

Additionally, you may wish to build, sign, and host your own docker images to have increased confidence in those images. We haved “signed container images” on our roadmap.

Sign up with a phone number (Sending SMS)


  • Registering accounts with a phone number

You need:

How to configure:

See the brig chart for configuration.

3rd-party proxying

You need Giphy/Google/Spotify/Soundcloud API keys (if you want to support previews by proxying these services)

See the proxy chart for configuration.