Book Image

HashiCorp Packer in Production

By : John Boero
Book Image

HashiCorp Packer in Production

By: John Boero

Overview of this book

Creating machine images can be time-consuming and error-prone when done manually. HashiCorp Packer enables you to automate this process by defining the configuration in a simple, declarative syntax. This configuration is then used to create machine images for multiple environments and cloud providers. The book begins by showing you how to create your first manifest while helping you understand the available components. You’ll then configure the most common built-in builder options for Packer and use runtime provisioners to reconfigure a source image for desired tasks. You’ll also learn how to control logging for troubleshooting errors in complex builds and explore monitoring options for multiple logs at once. As you advance, you’ll build on your initial manifest for a local application that’ll easily migrate to another builder or cloud. The chapters also help you get to grips with basic container image options in different formats while scaling large builds in production. Finally, you’ll develop a life cycle and retention policy for images, automate packer builds, and protect your production environment from nefarious plugins. By the end of this book, you’ll be equipped to smoothen collaboration and reduce the risk of errors by creating machine images consistently and automatically based on your defined configuration.
Table of Contents (18 chapters)
Part 1: Packer’s Beginnings
Part 2: Managing Large Environments
Part 3: Advanced Customized Packer


In this chapter, we discovered how to use HCP Packer to manage the lifecycle for us. The mechanisms to produce and consume HCP Packer data are similar for Packer and Terraform in delivering a consistent experience. The HCP Packer API is evolving with new features, such as ancestry and family revocation, so be sure to check the documentation pages for the latest features. Also, make sure that the builder plugins you use support the HCP Packer features required and that the latest versions of these plugins are used.

In the next chapter, we will take everything we have done manually up to this point and apply automation. Automation will make Packer development much easier, as you don’t need to manually run build steps, and you will have checks to prevent you from making common mistakes as part of your process.