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Execute commands as a workflow.
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Latest commit 23f7a59 Jul 25, 2019


Trackman is a command line tool and Go library that runs multiple commands in a workflow. It support parallel steps, step dependencies, async steps and success checkers.


Head to Trackman's releases and install download the executable for your OS / Architecture. Your version will be updated to the latest version after the first run, so don't worry about the version you pickup first.


Using Trackman is simple. It uses a YAML file to describe the steps to run and runs them. Here is an example workflow.yml file:

version: 1
  - name: list
    command: ls -la
  - name: env
    command: echo $USER

Save this file as workflow.yml and run it:

$ trackman run -f workflow.yml

Alternatively you can pipe in the workflow into Trackman:

$ cat workflow.yml | trackman apply -f -

This will run both steps in parallel.


Steps can be made dependent to each other:

version: 1
  - name: list
    command: ls -la
  - name: env
    command: echo $USER
      - list

In the example above, env will only run once list is finished successfully.

You can make a step dependent on more than one step. Such step will only run once all of the dependee steps have finished successfully.

Success and Failure

By default a step is considered successfully finished when it's done with an exist status of 0.

Sometimes however, there are tasks that run asynchronously and return with 0 immediately but their success will be known later. For example when kubectl applies a new configuration to a cluster, its success cannot be determined by the exit status. Trackman supports this by running probes.

version: 1
  - name: deploy
    command: kubectl apply -f manifest.yml
      command: kubectl wait --for=condition=complete job/myjob

This workflow will run kubectl apply -f manifest.yml first. If it returns with exist status 0 (it ran successfully), will then run kubectl wait --for=condition=complete job/myjob until it returns with exist status 0 and considers the step successful.

Trackman can continue running if a step fails if the step has a continue_on_failure: true.


By default Trackman waits for 10 seconds for each step to complete. If the step fails to complete within 10 seconds, it will consider it failed. This is the same for probes: all probes should return within 10 seconds.

You can change the timeout per step using the timeout attribute:

version: 1
  - name: dopy
    command: sleep 60
    timeout: 30s

Probes share their step's timeout.


You can add metadata to the workflow file as well as each step. Metadata can be used in step arguments.

version: 1
    foo: bar
  - name: list
      fuzz: buzz
    command: ls la

You can use the metadata as arguments of a step:

  - name: dump
      foo: bar
    command: "echo {{ index .Metadata \"foo\" }}"

Trackman can use Golang template language.

Work directory

To set the working directory of a step, use workdir attribute on a step.

Environment Variables

All environment variables in commands and their arguments are replaced with $ values. For example $HOME will be replaced with the right home directory address. This is the same for all environment variables available to Trackman at the time it starts.

All environment variables available to Trackman when it starts will be passed on to the step commands.

Preflight Checks

You can run some checks before the workflow starts. These could be checking for certain binaries or packages to be installed on the machine before the workflow starts. Each step can have one or more preflight checks. The workflow will run all preflight checks before starting to run the steps. If any of the preflight checks fail, the workflow will not start.

Success of a preflight check is based on the exit status. You can also assign an optional friendly message to each preflight check to be displayed in the event of a failure.

  - name: list
    command: ls -la
      - command: true
        message: "Oh nose!"

Trackman CLI


Runs the given workflow. Use --help for more details.

$ trackman run -f file.yml


Manually checks for updates. It can also switch the current release channel.

$ trackman update [--channel name]


Shows the channel and the version

$ trackman version


Shows help.

$ trackman help


Trackman updates automatically to the latest available version after each run (except for the version command). By default it runs the stable channel but you can switch the channel:

$ trackman update --channel dev

This will switch trackman to the dev (development) channel and will update it to the latest version of that channel after each run. You can check for updates manually using the update command as well. dev channel doesn't get automatically updated.


Automatic Release

All commits into master are built, tested and released on the edge channel. All tags are build, tested and released on the stable channel and the binaries are automatically uploaded to Github. dev branch is not automatically built or released.

Manual Release

If you want to release a new version of Trackman manually, follow these steps:

  1. Start a new Release in git flow. Make sure the release name is a valid SemVer text like 1.0.0-rc1 or 2.0.4.
  2. Run ./ CHANNEL, replacing CHANNEL with dev or stable or edge
  3. Run ./ This will upload the compiled binaries (previous step) to s3.
  4. Create a Github release from the tag and upload the binaries to it.

The last step assumes you have a configured AWS CLI installed on your machine with the right permissions to push to bucket.


Automatic Rollback

On Builtkite, run the needed release again with FORCE environment variable equal to force.

Manual Rollback

If you need to rollback a release, switch to the right tag and repeat the build / publish steps but run the build step with the --force flag:

$ ./ CHANNEL --force

Having the force flag on a release will force all clients to update all the time which is not desired. You will need to take this flag off when the issue is resolved and push a new version out with a higher version.

You can’t perform that action at this time.