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AUTOMATIC1111 via VS Code on Runpod

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RunPod templates are not always up-to-date or functioning properly. Installing "Automatic1111" or a similar GUI via VS Code on RunPod provides you with complete control over the installation. This is especially useful when you want to test the latest and greatest GUI tools but don't want to wait for RunPod to catch up with the open-source community. :)


☑️ Requirements

🔫 Tutorial

🔌 Connecting VS Code To Your Pod

  1. Start a network volume with RunPod VS Code Server template

  1. Open a new window in VS Code and select the Remote Explorer extension.

  1. Select Remotes (Tunnels/SSH) from the dropdown menu

  1. Hover over the SSH voice until a cog appears and click on it.

  1. From the voices in the dropdown select: /Users/<user>/.ssh/config

  1. Navigate to https://www.runpod.io/console/pods and click on the Connect button of your running pod instance.

  1. From the Connection Options tab, copy the exposed TCP IP and port number.

  1. Paste the copied data into the appropriate fields, within the /Users/<user>/.ssh/config file opened previously

# Read more about SSH config files: https://linux.die.net/man/5/ssh_config
Host <any_name_of_your_choice_here>
    HostName <PASTE-IP-HERE>
    Port <PASTE-PORT-HERE>
    User root
  1. Save with ⌘ + s or ⌃ + s

  2. Steps 4 to 6 will have to be repeated each time you spin up a new pod, which will have different SSH connection details

🔒 Generating SSH Certificate

We will use the UNIX ssh-keygen command to generate an SSH key. ssh-keygen is a component of the Secure Shell (SSH) protocol suite used to generate, manage, and convert authentication keys

  1. Navigate to https://www.runpod.io/console/pods and click on the Connect button of your running pod instance.

  1. From the Connection Options tab, copy the entire command

  1. Open a terminal on your computer or within VS Code and paste the command adding your own email address. Press enter and add your password when required to do so.

ssh-keygen -t keytype -C "[email protected]"
  1. Between the lines printed by the shell, you'll see one saying: Your public key has been saved in /Users/<username>/.ssh/<filename>.pub. Copy the indicated path.

  1. A full connection command will also be printed out, copy that too

  1. Navigate to https://www.runpod.io/console/user/settings > Settings > SSH Public Keys. Paste the key previously copied and click Update Public Key.

📶 Connect to your VS Code Server

  1. Back in VS code, close the current window entirely and open a new one.

  2. If a connection to your server it's already in the list, open the Remote Explorer extension and reconnect to the server by pressing on the arrow on its right side. If not, see step 3.

  1. If an existing connection to your server is not present in the list, press the refresh button in the top right corner.

  • If you encounter any connection issues at this point, it normally helps to trash the pod entirely and create a new one. Once the new pod is running, you'll only have to update the connection details in /Users/<user>/.ssh/config (see step 7 of Connecting VS Code To Your Pod).

  1. Navigate to https://www.runpod.io/console/pods and click on the Connect button of your running pod instance.

  1. From the Connection Options tab, copy the entire command for SSH over exposed TCP: (Supports SCP & SFTP).

  • Open a terminal on your computer or within VS Code and paste the command copied previously.

  • Press enter and type yes when asked: Are you sure you want to continue connecting.... Add a custom passphrase for key when required to do so.

  • Please store this password securely somewhere. You'll be asked this password every time you connect to a server with the current template.

ssh [email protected] -p XXXXX -i ~/.ssh/id keytype
  1. Back in VS code, close the current window entirely and open a new one. Then open the Remote Explorer extension and reconnect to the server by pressing on the arrow on its right side. (see step 7 of Generating SSH Certificate) When prompted, enter the reqruired passkey we just used within the system Terminal. After entering the passkey, you'll be finally connected to your Vs Code Server.

  • If you encounter any connection issues at this point, it normally helps to trash the pod entirely and create a new one. Once the new pod is running, you'll only have to update the connection details in /Users/<user>/.ssh/config (see step 7 of Connecting VS Code To Your Pod).

🖥️ Setting Up Your Machine

  1. Once connected to your RunPod VS Code server, open a terminal within VS Code by pressing ⇧ + ⌘ + P or ⇧ + ⌘ + P and typing Create New Terminal.

  2. Once the terminal is open, type:

  • cd /workspace and press ⏎

  • apt update press ⏎.

  • apt install -y vim and press ⏎.

  1. Type vim /workspace/entrypoint.sh and press ⏎. Paste the following with ⌃ + V or ⌘ + V

#!/usr/bin/env bash

# Update package lists
apt update

# Install required packages
apt install -y ffmpeg libsm6 libxext6 tmux rsync vim htop zip

# Install and upgrade gdown
pip install --upgrade gdown

# Tmux mouse support configuration
echo "set -g mouse on" > ~/.tmux.conf

# ComfyUI Requirements
pip install torch torchvision torchaudio --extra-index-url https://download.pytorch.org/whl/cu118 xformers

Then type :wq (copy pasting might not work) followed by ⏎.

  1. Type the command chmod +x entrypoint.sh followed by ⏎. This command modifies the permissions of the file entrypoint.sh to make it executable.

  2. Type vim /workspace/boot.sh and press ⏎. Paste the following with ⌃ + V or ⌘ + V

#!/usr/bin/env bash

# starts AUTOMATIC1111 webui
# to make this executable 👉 chmod +x boot.sh
# to execute boot.sh 👉 ./boot.sh

# Update package lists
apt update

# Navigate to the webui directory
cd /workspace/stable-diffusion-webui

# Install required packages to fix AttributeError
apt install -y ffmpeg libsm6 libxext6

# Start the webui
./webui.sh

Then type :wq (copy pasting might not work) followed by ⏎.

  1. Type the command chmod +x boot.sh followed by ⏎. This command modifies the permissions of the file entrypoint.sh to make it executable.

  2. Once the terminal is open, type:

  • cd /workspace and press ⏎

  • ./entrypoint.sh and press ⏎.

  • 🥳 Your environment is now ready

💽 Installing Automatic1111

  1. Once connected open a terminal within VS Code by pressing ⇧ + ⌘ + P or ⇧ + ⌘ + P and typing Create New Terminal.

  1. Once the terminal is open, type cd /workspace

  2. Navigate to Automatic1111 GitHub repository https://github.com/AUTOMATIC1111/stable-diffusion-webui and copy the .git URL

  1. Within the VS Code terminal type git clone https://github.com/AUTOMATIC1111/stable-diffusion-webui and press ⏎

🆕 Starting Your GUI for the First Time

  1. Once the cloning is completed type cd /workspace/stable-diffusion-webui and press ⏎. Then type ./webui.sh to start the application. As this is a first time start, requiring several installations, it will take a while. So sit back or grab a coffee. If prompted to Download the default model? (y/N) type y.

  2. Type ./entrypoint.sh followed by ⏎. The script performs the following actions: Updates the package lists on a system using the apt package manager.

  • Installs several packages, including multimedia processing tools (ffmpeg), libraries (libsm6, libxext6), system utilities (tmux, rsync, htop, psmisc), a text editor (vim), and a compression tool (zip).

  • Installs and upgrades the gdown tool using pip, which is used for downloading files from Google Drive.

  • Configures tmux (a terminal multiplexer) to support mouse interactions by creating or updating the ~/.tmux.conf file. Starts the webui by calling ./boot.sh

  • At this point you should have received a notification within VS Code allowing you to open your instance of AUTOMATIC111 via web browser. By clicking on ... you'll be bable to access your machine. If this is not the case, check within the ports tab, for open ports. And by clicking on the globe icon, you'll access your machine.

ğŸŽ¨ Installing Models

  1. Open a terminal in VS Code pressing ⌃ + ⇧ + and type: /workspace/stable-diffusion-webui/models to navigate to the models folder.

  2. In your web browser, navigate to a .safetensors model web page of your choice and grab the download URL.

  3. In VS Code terminal, type wget <URL> --content-disposition to download the model to your current folder.

  4. When the download is complete, simply refresh your checkpoints selector to have the model available in A1111.


I genuinely hope that this guide was helpful. If there are any queries you'd like to raise, or if you have any additional tips that could enrich this guide even further, I encourage you to post them in the comments. Your contributions are valuable and can help in refining and expanding this guide, as well as benefiting others who discover it. I appreciate your engagement and support — thank you!

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