Skip to content


Subversion checkout URL

You can clone with HTTPS or Subversion.

Download ZIP
Packer is a tool for creating identical machine images for multiple platforms from a single source configuration.
Go CSS Other

Merge pull request #2059 from KFishner/hashicorp-ecosystem

Add how Packer fits into the HashiCorp Ecosystem
latest commit c8b3dfff5f
@sethvargo sethvargo authored
Failed to load latest commit information.
builder Delete GCE disk on SIGINT.
command Allow -create to be passed still for BC
common Better error reporting when a config key in template is Unknown
communicator/ssh communicator/ssh: bind variable value to closure
fix command: move all remaining commands
packer packer: fix formatting directives in test
plugin post-processor/atlas: make it
post-processor post-processor/vagrant-cloud: fix incorrect printf verb types
provisioner provisioner/salt-masterless: fix incorrect printf verb types
scripts scripts: ignore errors on gox for now
test fixed packer --version
website add packer and the hc ecosystem
.gitignore Add Vagrantfile for cross cmpiling
.travis.yml Test Go 1.4 Update CHANGELOG Add gox installation instructions to Contributing
Makefile Makefile: add vet target Add Travis CI badge to README
Vagrantfile Remove Vagrant constants [GH-1566]
checkpoint.go fixing version numbers: RCs should be labeled x.x.x-rcx
commands.go hook up push to commands
config.go Clarify the plugin discovery search & priority orders.
config_unix.go website: update website to point to proper directory
config_windows.go website: update website to point to proper directory
log.go command: move more to this package, remove old packages
main.go fixed packer --version
main_test.go Rename some files, style
panic.go Rename some files, style
signal.go packer/plugin: confirm cleanup at first signal received
stdin.go ctrl-c closes stdin for plugins so that they are unblocked
version.go Update CHANGELOG


Build Status

Packer is a tool for building identical machine images for multiple platforms from a single source configuration.

Packer is lightweight, runs on every major operating system, and is highly performant, creating machine images for multiple platforms in parallel. Packer comes out of the box with support for the following platforms:

  • Amazon EC2 (AMI). Both EBS-backed and instance-store AMIs
  • DigitalOcean
  • Docker
  • Google Compute Engine
  • OpenStack
  • Parallels
  • QEMU. Both KVM and Xen images.
  • VirtualBox
  • VMware

Support for other platforms can be added via plugins.

The images that Packer creates can easily be turned into Vagrant boxes.

Quick Start

Note: There is a great introduction and getting started guide for those with a bit more patience. Otherwise, the quick start below will get you up and running quickly, at the sacrifice of not explaining some key points.

First, download a pre-built Packer binary for your operating system or compile Packer yourself.

After Packer is installed, create your first template, which tells Packer what platforms to build images for and how you want to build them. In our case, we'll create a simple AMI that has Redis pre-installed. Save this file as quick-start.json. Be sure to replace any credentials with your own.

  "builders": [{
    "type": "amazon-ebs",
    "access_key": "YOUR KEY HERE",
    "secret_key": "YOUR SECRET KEY HERE",
    "region": "us-east-1",
    "source_ami": "ami-de0d9eb7",
    "instance_type": "t1.micro",
    "ssh_username": "ubuntu",
    "ami_name": "packer-example {{timestamp}}"

Next, tell Packer to build the image:

$ packer build quick-start.json

Packer will build an AMI according to the "quick-start" template. The AMI will be available in your AWS account. To delete the AMI, you must manually delete it using the AWS console. Packer builds your images, it does not manage their lifecycle. Where they go, how they're run, etc. is up to you.


Full, comprehensive documentation is viewable on the Packer website:

Developing Packer

If you wish to work on Packer itself or any of its built-in providers, you'll first need Go installed (version 1.2+ is required). Make sure Go is properly installed, including setting up a GOPATH.

Next, install the following software packages, which are needed for some dependencies:

Then, install Gox, which is used as a compilation tool on top of Go:

$ go get -u

Next, clone this repository into $GOPATH/src/ Install the necessary dependencies by running make updatedeps and then just type make. This will compile some more dependencies and then run the tests. If this exits with exit status 0, then everything is working!

$ make updatedeps
$ make

To compile a development version of Packer and the built-in plugins, run make dev. This will put Packer binaries in the bin folder:

$ make dev
$ bin/packer

If you're developing a specific package, you can run tests for just that package by specifying the TEST variable. For example below, only packer package tests will be run.

$ make test TEST=./packer
Something went wrong with that request. Please try again.