Basic Usage of Provisioners
While Vagrant offers multiple options for how you are able to provision your machine, there is a standard usage pattern as well as some important points common to all provisioners that are important to know.
First, every provisioner is configured within your
config.vm.provision method call. For example, the Vagrantfile
below enables shell provisioning:
Vagrant.configure("2") do |config| # ... other configuration config.vm.provision "shell", inline: "echo hello" end
Every provisioner has a type, such as
"shell", used as the first
parameter to the provisioning configuration. Following that is basic key/value
for configuring that specific provisioner. Instead of basic key/value, you
can also use a Ruby block for a syntax that is more like variable assignment.
The following is effectively the same as the prior example:
Vagrant.configure("2") do |config| # ... other configuration config.vm.provision "shell" do |s| s.inline = "echo hello" end end
The benefit of the block-based syntax is that with more than a couple options it can greatly improve readability. Additionally, some provisioners, like the Chef provisioner, have special methods that can be called within that block to ease configuration that cannot be done with the key/value approach.
The attributes that can be set in a single-line are the attributes that
are set with the
= style, such as
inline = "echo hello" above. If the
style is instead more of a function call, such as
add_recipe "foo", then
this cannot be specified in a single line.
Provisioners can also be named (since 1.7.0). These names are used cosmetically for output as well as overriding provisioner settings (covered further below). An example of naming provisioners is shown below:
Vagrant.configure("2") do |config| # ... other configuration config.vm.provision "bootstrap", type: "shell" do |s| s.inline = "echo hello" end end
Naming provisioners is simple. The first argument to
becomes the name, and then a
type option is used to specify the provisioner
type, such as
type: "shell" above.
Provisioners are run in three cases: the initial
vagrant reload --provision.
--no-provision flag can be passed to
reload if you do not
want to run provisioners. Likewise, you can pass
--provision to force
--provision-with flag can be used if you only want to run a
specific provisioner if you have multiple provisioners specified. For
example, if you have a shell and Puppet provisioner and only want to
run the shell one, you can do
vagrant provision --provision-with shell.
The arguments to
--provision-with can be the provisioner type (such as
"shell") or the provisioner name (such as "bootstrap" from above).
Run Once or Always
By default, provisioners are only run once, during the first
since the last
vagrant destroy, unless the
--provision flag is set,
as noted above.
Optionally, you can configure provisioners to run on every
reload. They will only be not run if the
--no-provision flag is
explicitly specified. To do this set the
run option to "always",
as shown below:
Vagrant.configure("2") do |config| config.vm.provision "shell", inline: "echo hello", run: "always" end
If you are using the block format, you must specify it outside of the block, as shown below:
Vagrant.configure("2") do |config| config.vm.provision "shell", run: "always" do |s| s.inline = "echo hello" end end
config.vm.provision methods can be used to define multiple
provisioners. These provisioners will be run in the order they're defined.
This is useful for a variety of reasons, but most commonly it is used so
that a shell script can bootstrap some of the system so that another provisioner
can take over later.
If you define provisioners at multiple "scope" levels (such as globally in the configuration block, then in a multi-machine definition, then maybe in a provider-specific override), then the outer scopes will always run before any inner scopes. For example, in the Vagrantfile below:
Vagrant.configure("2") do |config| config.vm.provision "shell", inline: "echo foo" config.vm.define "web" do |web| web.vm.provision "shell", inline: "echo bar" end config.vm.provision "shell", inline: "echo baz" end
The ordering of the provisioners will be to echo "foo", "baz", then "bar" (note the second one might not be what you expect!). Remember: ordering is outside in.
With multiple provisioners, use the
--provision-with setting along
with names to get more fine grainted control over what is run and when.
Overriding Provisioner Settings
Warning: Advanced Topic! Provisioner overriding is an advanced topic that really only becomes useful if you are already using multi-machine and/or provider overrides. If you are just getting started with Vagrant, you can safely skip this.
When using features such as multi-machine or provider-specific overrides, you may want to define common provisioners in the global configuration scope of a Vagrantfile, but override certain aspects of them internally. Vagrant allows you to do this, but has some details to consider.
To override settings, you must assign a name to your provisioner.
Vagrant.configure("2") do |config| config.vm.provision "foo", type: "shell", inline: "echo foo" config.vm.define "web" do |web| web.vm.provision "foo", type: "shell", inline: "echo bar" end end
In the above, only "bar" will be echoed, because the inline setting overloaded the outer provisioner. This overload is only effective within that scope: the "web" VM. If there were another VM defined, it would still echo "foo" unless it itself also overloaded the provisioner.
Be careful with ordering. When overriding a provisioner in a sub-scope, the provisioner will run at that point. In the example below, the output would be "foo" then "bar":
Vagrant.configure("2") do |config| config.vm.provision "foo", type: "shell", inline: "echo ORIGINAL!" config.vm.define "web" do |web| web.vm.provision "shell", inline: "echo foo" web.vm.provision "foo", type: "shell", inline: "echo bar" end end
If you want to preserve the original ordering, you can specify
preserve_order: true flag.