Can't login on self-hosted (was using only basic Auth before version 1 update)

Describe the problem/error/question

I am using n8n self-hosted using docker-compose. I upgraded n8n from the terminal and it moved to the latest image, v1.0.1. My issue is that I never setup a user before (as in email/password), I only used basic Auth.

Now I can’t login to my n8n dashboard.

After searching a bit, I followed this guide User management | n8n Docs and added the following variables to my .env file (with the info from my SMTP provider):

N8N_EMAIL_MODE    smtp    
N8N_SMTP_HOST    your_SMTP_server_name    
N8N_SMTP_PORT    your_SMTP_server_port Default is 465.    
N8N_SMTP_USER    your_SMTP_username    
N8N_SMTP_PASS    your_SMTP_password    
N8N_SMTP_SENDER    Sender email address.

I also commented out these vars:


After this, the guide says

“If your n8n instance is already running, you need to restart it to enable the new SMTP settings.”

I stopped the docker container and then restarted it. Then, the guide says to move to step 2:

“When you set up user management for the first time, you create an owner account.”

However, when I open n8n again. the app doesn’t display a signup screen. It only displays the Sign in page. I tried to change the url path from signin to signup but nothing.

What is the error message (if any)?

After I did everything above, I tried to use the 'Forgot Password on the Login screen (in case I had created a user before and didn’t remember) and it just says:

“Please contact your admin. n8n isn’t set up to send email right now.”

Please share your workflow


Information on your n8n setup

  • n8n version: 1
  • Database (default: SQLite):
  • n8n EXECUTIONS_PROCESS setting: main
  • Running n8n via Docker Compose
  • Operating system: Ubuntu 20.04.6 LTS

Hey @noms,

Welcome to the community :cake:

I suspect at some point in the past you had created a user and forgot about it, To get it working though you will need to reset the user management feature which should then ask you to create an account again. To do this you will need to run the n8n cli in your container, You can find the command information here: CLI commands | n8n Docs

Thanks for your welcome and your assistance Jon!

I used the page you linked and now got it working!

Thanks a lot.

For anyone going through the same and using docker-compose, here’s what did the trick for me:

  1. List the running containers:
    docker-compose ps

  2. Use this command with the n8n container name from previous step:

docker exec -u node -it <n8n-container-name> n8n user-management:reset

  1. Stop and restart docker.

  2. Go to your n8n server. you’ll be presented with a signup screen. Create the owner account.

  3. Don’t forget your credentials.

P.S. N8N Rocks!

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