What is OpenFaas?

Info: This article is still WIP.

OpenFaaS is a cloud agnostic OpenSource project to run functions on your own terms. faasd packs the same punch, but you can host it on a single VPS, without all of the k8s overhead. What you will get is a fully fledged FaaS engine with queueing out of the box.

Let’s start setting it up:

SSH into server, then sudo apt update && sudo apt upgrade -y.

Install Caddy

We will use Caddy as a reverse proxy, to link to our functions.

sudo apt install -y debian-keyring debian-archive-keyring apt-transport-https
curl -1sLf 'https://dl.cloudsmith.io/public/caddy/stable/gpg.key' | sudo gpg --dearmor -o /usr/share/keyrings/caddy-stable-archive-keyring.gpg
curl -1sLf 'https://dl.cloudsmith.io/public/caddy/stable/debian.deb.txt' | sudo tee /etc/apt/sources.list.d/caddy-stable.list
sudo apt update
sudo apt install caddy

Install faasd

mkdir ~/Downloads && cd ~/Downloads
git clone https://github.com/openfaas/faasd --depth=1
cd faasd

Configure faasd docker-compose.yaml

Change port mapping so that the faasd gateway only accepts calls via localhost:

sudo nano /var/lib/faasd/docker-compose.yaml


Then restart the faasd service: sudo systemctl daemon-reload && sudo systemctl restart faasd

Enable firewall (optional)

For security reasons, you can enable firewall rules accordingly:

sudo ufw default deny incoming
sudo ufw default allow outgoing
sudo ufw allow ssh
sudo ufw allow 80/tcp
sudo ufw allow 443/tcp
sudo ufw allow from to
sudo ufw enable

Obtain your faasd credentials

Store the following output somewhere safe for later reference:

sudo cat /var/lib/faasd/secrets/basic-auth-password ;echo

The associated user for this password is admin.

Configure Caddy as a reverse proxy

Open Caddyfile via sudo nano /etc/caddy/Caddyfile and add:

# required for automated lets-encrypt cert issuing & renewal
    email you@example.com 

faasd.domain.tld {

Reload Caddy via systemctl reload caddy.

Install store functions

Via web-ui

Visit faasd.domain.tld in your browser and login using the credentials obtained above. Then deploy for example ‘ASCII cows’. Might take some time after pressing the deploy button.

Via faas-cli from your local machine

Install faas-cli via curl -sSL https://cli.openfaas.com | sudo -E sh.

Store your auth pw obtained earlier in a text file called faasd.txt. Then execute following commands on your local machine:

export OPENFAAS_URL=https://faasd.domain.tld
cat faasd.txt | faas-cli login --username admin --password-stdin
faas-cli store deploy cows

The faas-cli can also be used to hook up continuous deployments via Gitlab CI/CD or GitHub Actions.

Use Caddy as a reverse proxy for a specific function

Open Caddyfile via sudo nano /etc/caddy/Caddyfile and add:

cows.domain.tld {
    handle_path /* {
        rewrite * /function/cows{path}
    reverse_proxy {

Reload Caddy via systemctl reload caddy.

The End

That’s it, you’re good to go - happy hacking 👨‍💻!