[SELF HOSTED UNIFIED] Changing the installation id and key?


I made a bit of a silly mistake and forgot the password of the cloud bitwarden account, because I never use it anymore, having switched to selfhosted.

The issue is, that the selfhosted license needed renewing, and because I couldn’t log into the cloud account I couldn’t download the new license file.

Anyway support have been great at deleting the cloud account, creating a new one and transferring my license over - great - the issue is that I cannot download a new license key because it’s saying my license key isn’t valid - presumably because it’s no longer associated with the account. Okay, annoying.

So I can easily create a new installation id/key - but I’m worried that changing an existing installations installation id or key is going to cause issues? I don’t know what the purpose of the id and key is, does it have any role in the encryption algorithm, if so changing it would not enable me to get into my data anymore.

Can someone explain the purpose of the installation id and key, and if it’s safe to change on an existing installation?

The annoying thing is, I can do a plain text backup of my data fine, as I have full access to my self hosted instance, but all the organisation data is locked because the license has expired, so I can’t backup that…

Just to update this incase anyone has the same question in the future.

Bitwarden support confirmed changing the installation id and key won’t break anything, and I did it and it was fine - I then downloaded the new license and everything worked fine.

So some lessons:

  • Even if you’re self hosted, don’t forget your cloud password you use for billing!
  • If you do create a new cloud account, make sure it was in the same region you registered your self hosted instance in - in my case self hosted was US and I created the new cloud account in the EU.
  • Changing installation id / key after the fact is safe

Thanks for support for being quick and responsive to my emails, it was a painful 24 hours not having access to all our passwords and TOTP codes!

Great suggestions @brettjenkins - thank you for sharing with the Community!