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This BoxGrinder platform plugin generates a compressed tarball which can be uploaded to a host with a minimal OS install. When extracted the payload will place the files from your "files:" section into the appropriate directories and will place a script in the root directory which can install all of your "packages:" and execute your "post: base:" commands.

In other words, it provides a way to customise an existing minimal OS install according to a BoxGrinder appliance definition. This can be useful eg: when your test environment is virtualised but parts of your production/staging environment are not, or if your VM hosting providers only allow pre-configured images to be used and you can't build your hosted images from scratch.


gem install dw-boxgrinder-tarball-platform-plugin


boxgrinder-build your_appliance.appl -p tarball -l dw-boxgrinder-tarball-platform-plugin

After the build has finished, you'll find the payload archive under build/appliances//////tarball-plugin/.tgz

Copy this file into the root directory of you target host, untar it (tar -zxvf your_appliance.tgz) and run the "" file (sh

Known Issues and Limitations

This plugin currently only works when BoxGrinder is executed from within the directory containing your .appl file(s) (otherwise the files in your "files:" section won't be found). A fix for that is being investigated.

This plugin does not support ephemeral repositories and will simply ignore them when adding repos to the tarball payload. Any RPMs from ephemeral repos will cause the script in the tarball payload to fail.

If you have platform-specific "post" instructions they will be ignored by this plugin. We have no need for such functionality, though pull requests to implement it would be welcomed.


To build the gem from source:

gem build dw-boxgrinder-tarball-platform-plugin.gemspec


Copyright (c) 2012 Digital Worx Aus. See LICENSE file for further details.