Sometimes we get software where all (or most of) settings are passed into application server via environment variables. But Passenger is not executed directly. So how do we pass ENV variables into it?

We need to create a little “wrapper” around Ruby, so it will be executed with our environment variables. Here’s a little example (

export  MONGODB_HOST= \
export  MONGODB_PORT=27017 \
export MONGODB_DBNAME=openaudit \
export REDIS_HOST= \
export REDIS_PORT=6379 \
export REDIS_DB=10 \

exec "/usr/local/bin/ruby" "$@"

Script must be executable with chmod +x and should be placed in /usr/local/bin/ dir.

There is one more thing to do: tell Passenger where the wrapper is (vhost example):

    <VirtualHost *:3001>
      RackEnv production
      PassengerMaxPoolSize 30
      PassengerUseGlobalQueue on
      PassengerRuby /usr/local/bin/ruby-wrapper
      DocumentRoot /home/smhtng/app/current/public/
      PassengerUser openaudit   
      <Directory /home/smhtng/app/current/public/>
         AllowOverride all             
         Options -MultiViews            

The “magic” happens here:

 PassengerRuby /usr/local/bin/ruby-wrapper