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

Adding applications deployable from vSphere

Rather than just show examples of builders, we should briefly cover how builders work. This will better prepare you to understand how data input and output work in builder plugins. The vSphere builder is actually provided by the vSphere plugin. Some HashiCorp products include all supported plugins in the product GitHub repo, while others have split plugins out into their own repositories for independent development. If you think you may have found a bug in a builder, it’s tempting to go and check the base Packer source code repository at However, if you go there and search for vSphere code, all you will find is testing and documentation code. The real bits of the plugin are stored in a plugin repository at This is how most plugins have been developed as products matured. This gives granular control to the community and the Alliances partners to...