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

Exploring GitLab CI pipeline support

Now that we’ve seen how GitHub Actions handles basic automation, let’s repeat the same experiment for GitLab CI. GitLab offers a free tier of SaaS and also a free edition of the private GitLab Community Edition. GitLab offers the paid supported Enterprise platform edition, which is recommended for production workloads. Enterprise users have access to additional features than what Community Edition contains. Both the SaaS and private GitLab options can serve to follow the examples in this chapter. With an organization and admin access to a repository in GitLab, you will find GitLab runners are almost identical to GitHub runners. The user has the same option of managed or self-hosted runners. First, we need at least one runner to actually perform Packer builds. Similarly to GitHub, download and install the runner type needed. This can be a local self-hosted runner or a cloud or managed runner just like GitHub. GitLab has a...