Ansible Provisioner

Provisioner name: ansible

The Vagrant Ansible provisioner allows you to provision the guest using Ansible playbooks by executing ansible-playbook from the Vagrant host.

Warning: If you are not familiar with Ansible and Vagrant already, I recommend starting with the shell provisioner. However, if you are comfortable with Vagrant already, Vagrant is a great way to learn Ansible.

Setup Requirements

If installing Ansible directly on the Vagrant host is not an option in your development environment, you might be looking for the Ansible Local provisioner alternative.


This page only documents the specific parts of the ansible (remote) provisioner. General Ansible concepts like Playbook or Inventory are shortly explained in the introduction to Ansible and Vagrant.

Simplest Configuration

To run Ansible against your Vagrant guest, the basic Vagrantfile configuration looks like:

Vagrant.configure("2") do |config|

  # Run Ansible from the Vagrant Host
  config.vm.provision "ansible" do |ansible|
    ansible.playbook = "playbook.yml"



This section lists the specific options for the Ansible (remote) provisioner. In addition to the options listed below, this provisioner supports the common options for both Ansible provisioners.

  • ask_sudo_pass (boolean) - require Ansible to prompt for a sudo password.

    The default value is false.

  • ask_vault_pass (boolean) - require Ansible to prompt for a vault password.

    The default value is false.

  • force_remote_user (boolean) - require Vagrant to set the ansible_ssh_user setting in the generated inventory, or as an extra variable when a static inventory is used. All the Ansible remote_user parameters will then be overridden by the value of config.ssh.username of the Vagrant SSH Settings.

    If this option is set to false Vagrant will set the Vagrant SSH username as a default Ansible remote user, but remote_user parameters of your Ansible plays or tasks will still be taken into account and thus override the Vagrant configuration.

    The default value is true.

    Note: This option was introduced in Vagrant 1.8.0. Previous Vagrant versions behave like if this option was set to false.

  • host_key_checking (boolean) - require Ansible to enable SSH host key checking.

    The default value is false.

  • raw_ssh_args (array of strings) - require Ansible to apply a list of OpenSSH client options.

    Example: ['-o ControlMaster=no'].

    It is an unsafe wildcard that can be used to pass additional SSH settings to Ansible via ANSIBLE_SSH_ARGS environment variable, overriding any other SSH arguments (e.g. defined in an ansible.cfg configuration file).

Tips and Tricks

Ansible Parallel Execution

Vagrant is designed to provision multi-machine environments in sequence, but the following configuration pattern can be used to take advantage of Ansible parallelism:

# Vagrant 1.7+ automatically inserts a different
# insecure keypair for each new VM created. The easiest way
# to use the same keypair for all the machines is to disable
# this feature and rely on the legacy insecure key.
# config.ssh.insert_key = false
# Note:
# As of Vagrant 1.7.3, it is no longer necessary to disable
# the keypair creation when using the auto-generated inventory.

N = 3
(1..N).each do |machine_id|
  config.vm.define "machine#{machine_id}" do |machine|
    machine.vm.hostname = "machine#{machine_id}" "private_network", ip: "192.168.77.#{20+machine_id}"

    # Only execute once the Ansible provisioner,
    # when all the machines are up and ready.
    if machine_id == N
      machine.vm.provision :ansible do |ansible|
        # Disable default limit to connect to all the machines
        ansible.limit = "all"
        ansible.playbook = "playbook.yml"


If you apply this parallel provisioning pattern with a static Ansible inventory, you will have to organize the things so that all the relevant private keys are provided to the ansible-playbook command. The same kind of considerations applies if you are using multiple private keys for a same machine (see config.ssh.private_key_path SSH setting).

Force Paramiko Connection Mode

The Ansible provisioner is implemented with native OpenSSH support in mind, and there is no official support for paramiko (A native Python SSHv2 protocol library).

If you really need to use this connection mode though, it is possible to enable paramiko as illustrated in the following configuration examples:

With auto-generated inventory:

ansible.raw_arguments = ["--connection=paramiko"]

With a custom inventory, the private key must be specified (e.g. via an ansible.cfg configuration file, --private-key argument, or as part of your inventory file):

ansible.inventory_path = "./my-inventory"
ansible.raw_arguments  = [