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OwnTracks allows you to keep track of your own location. You can build your private location diary or share it with your family and friends. OwnTracks is open-source and uses open protocols for communication so you can be sure your data stays secure and private.

OwnTracks Screenshot

Using a smartphone app, OwnTracks allows you to collect and analyse your own location data without sharing this data with a cloud provider (i.e. Apple, Google). Potential use cases are:

  • Sharing family locations without relying on Apple Find-My-friends
  • Performing automated actions in HomeAssistant when you arrive/leave home

OwnTracks Requirements


Already deployed:



Setup data locations

We'll need a directory so store OwnTracks' data , so create /var/data/owntracks:

mkdir /var/data/owntracks

Prepare OwnTracks environment

Create owntracks.env, and populate with the following variables


OwnTracks Docker Swarm config

Create a docker swarm config file in docker-compose syntax (v3), something like the example below:

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version: "3.0"

      image: funkypenguin/owntracks
      env_file : /var/data/config/owntracks/owntracks.env
        - /var/data/owntracks:/owntracks
        - internal
        - traefik_public
        - 1883:1883
        - 8883:8883
        - 8083:8083
          # traefik common
          - traefik.enable=true

          # traefikv1
          - traefik.port=8083     

          # traefikv2
          - "traefik.http.routers.owntracks.rule=Host(``)"
          - ""
          - "traefik.enable=true"

          # Remove if you wish to access the URL directly
          - "traefik.http.routers.owntracks.middlewares=forward-auth@file"

    external: true
    driver: overlay
        - subnet:


Setup unique static subnets for every stack you deploy. This avoids IP/gateway conflicts which can otherwise occur when you're creating/removing stacks a lot. See my list here.


Launch OwnTracks stack

Launch the OwnTracks stack by running docker stack deploy owntracks -c <path -to-docker-compose.yml>

Log into your new instance at https://YOUR-FQDN, with user "root" and the password you specified in gitlab.env.

Chef's notes 📓

  1. If you wanted to expose the Owntracks UI directly, you could remove the traefik-forward-auth from the design. 

  2. I'm using my own image rather than owntracks/recorderd, because of a potentially swarm-breaking bug I found in the official container. If this gets resolved (or if I was mistaken) I'll update the recipe accordingly. 

  3. By default, you'll get a fully accessible, unprotected MQTT broker. This may not be suitable for public exposure, so you'll want to look into securing mosquitto with TLS and ACLs. 

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