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Using SWAG as Reverse Proxy


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To make the setup of a Reverse Proxy much easier, developed SWAG
SWAG - Secure Web Application Gateway (formerly known as letsencrypt, no relation to Let's Encryptâ„¢) sets up an Nginx web server and reverse proxy with PHP support and a built-in certbot client that automates free TLS server certificate generation and renewal processes (Let's Encrypt and ZeroSSL). It also contains fail2ban for intrusion prevention.

Step 1: Get a domain

The first step is to grab a dynamic DNS if you don't have your own subdomain already. You can get this from for example DuckDNS. If you already own a domain, you'll need to create an A record that points to the machine that SWAG is running on. See the SWAG documentation for more details.

Step 2: Set-up SWAG

Then you will need to set up SWAG, the variables of the docker-compose are explained on the Github page of SWAG. This is an example of how to set it up using DuckDNS and docker-compose.


version: "2.1"
        container_name: swag
            - NET_ADMIN
            - PUID=1000
            - PGID=1000
            # valid TZs at
            - TZ=Europe/Brussels 
            - URL=<mydomain.duckdns>
            - SUBDOMAINS=wildcard
            - VALIDATION=duckdns
            - CERTPROVIDER= #optional
            - DNSPLUGIN= #optional
            - DUCKDNSTOKEN=<duckdnstoken>
            - EMAIL=<e-mail> #optional
            - ONLY_SUBDOMAINS=false #optional
            - EXTRA_DOMAINS=<extradomains> #optional
            - STAGING=false #optional
            - /etc/config/swag:/config
            - 443:443
            # required if VALIDATION=http above, if you aren't using DuckDNS
            - 80:80 
        restart: unless-stopped

Don't forget to change the mydomain.duckns into your personal domain and the duckdnstoken into your token and remove the brackets.

You can also include the contents of the mealie docker-compose in the SWAG docker-compose, without the ports section under mealie. This allows SWAG and mealie to communicate on the same docker network, without making mealie visible to other applications on your machine.

Step 3: Change the config files

Navigate to the config folder of SWAG and head to proxy-confs. If you used the example above, you should navigate to: /etc/config/swag/nginx/proxy-confs/. There are a lot of preconfigured files to use for different apps such as radarr, sonarr, overseerr, ...

To use the bundled configuration file, simply rename mealie.subdomain.conf.sample in the proxy-confs folder to mealie.subdomain.conf. Alternatively, you can create a new file mealie.subdomain.conf in proxy-confs with the following configuration:


server {
    listen 443 ssl http2;
    listen [::]:443 ssl http2;

    server_name mealie.*;

    include /config/nginx/ssl.conf;

    client_max_body_size 0;

    location / {
        include /config/nginx/proxy.conf;
        include /config/nginx/resolver.conf;
        set $upstream_app mealie;
        set $upstream_port 80;
        set $upstream_proto http;
        proxy_pass $upstream_proto://$upstream_app:$upstream_port;

Step 4: Port-forward port 443

Since SWAG allows you to set up a secure connection, you will need to open port 443 on your router for encrypted traffic. This is way more secure than port 80 for http. For more information about using TLS on port 443, see SWAG's documentation on cert providers and port forwarding.

Step 5: Restart SWAG

When you change anything in the config of Nginx, you will need to restart the container using docker restart swag. If everything went well, you can now access mealie on the subdomain you configured: