Install Rudder relay on Debian or Ubuntu

Relay servers won’t work if you don’t have a valid scale-out-relay plugin installed.

If you install a relay without that plugin, policy generation will fail, preventing new policies to be applied to your Nodes.

More information about plugins in dedicated section


Each official package is signed with our GPG signature. To ensure the packages you will install are official builds and have not been altered, import our key into apt using the following command:

wget --quiet -O- "" | sudo apt-key add -

Our key fingerprint is:

pub  4096R/474A19E8 2011-12-15 Rudder Project (release key) <>
      Key fingerprint = 7C16 9817 7904 212D D58C  B4D1 9322 C330 474A 19E8

Add Rudder’s package repository:

# If lsb_release is not installed on your machine, change $(lb_release -cs) by your distribution codename.
# Ex:
#   stretch for Debian 9
#   bionic  for Ubuntu 18.04 LTS

echo "deb $(lsb_release -cs) main" > /etc/apt/sources.list.d/rudder.list

If you have an active subscription, use the following to get access to long term support (you need to replace the user name and the password by your Rudder account):

echo "deb $(lsb_release -cs) main" > /etc/apt/sources.list.d/rudder.list

Update your local package database to retrieve the list of packages available on our repository:

apt-get update

Install the package:

apt-get install rudder-server-relay

To complete this step, please make sure that your node is configured successfully and appears in your Rudder web interface.

On the root server

You have to tell the Rudder root server that a node will be a relay. To do so, launch the rudder-node-to-relay script on the root server, supplying the UUID of the host to be considered as a relay. You can find the UUID of your node with the rudder agent info command.

rudder server node-to-relay <aaaaaaaa-bbbb-cccc-dddd-eeeeeeee>


When every step has completed successfully:

  • The Rudder root server will recognize the new node as a relay

  • It will generate specific policies for the relay

  • The relay will update and switch to his new role

This is an example of node details pane showing a relay server. Note the "Role: Rudder relay server" part that shows that the machine has successfully changed from a node to a relay.

Figure 1. Rudder relay node

Adding nodes to a relay server

When you have at least one relay, you will likely want to add nodes on it.

You then have two possible cases:

  • You want to switch an already existing node to the relay

  • You want to add a new one

The procedure on both cases is the same, you have to:

  • Update the policy server with the IP address or the fully qualified domain name of the relay server (instead of the root server) and reset pinned public key

rudder agent policy-server <rudder relay ip or hostname>
rudder agent server-keys-reset
  • Trigger an inventory immediately to make sure the node is registered correctly

rudder agent inventory

After those steps, the node should be registered correctly on your Rudder infrastructure.

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