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Pipelines

This document defines Pipelines and their capabilities.


Syntax

To define a configuration file for a Pipeline resource, you can specify the following fields:

  • Required:
    • apiVersion - Specifies the API version, for example tekton.dev/v1alpha1.
    • kind - Specify the Pipeline resource object.
    • metadata - Specifies data to uniquely identify the Pipeline resource object, for example a name.
    • spec - Specifies the configuration information for your Pipeline resource object. In order for a Pipeline to do anything, the spec must include:
      • tasks - Specifies which Tasks to run and how to run them
  • Optional:
    • resources - Specifies which PipelineResources of which types the Pipeline will be using in its Tasks
    • tasks
      • resources.inputs / resource.outputs
        • from - Used when the content of the PipelineResource should come from the output of a previous Pipeline Task
        • runAfter - Used when the Pipeline Task should be executed after another Pipeline Task, but there is no output linking required
        • retries - Used when the task is wanted to be executed if it fails. Could be a network error or a missing dependency. It does not apply to cancellations.
        • conditions - Used when a task is to be executed only if the specified conditions are evaluated to be true.

Declared resources

In order for a Pipeline to interact with the outside world, it will probably need PipelineResources which will be given to Tasks as inputs and outputs.

Your Pipeline must declare the PipelineResources it needs in a resources section in the spec, giving each a name which will be used to refer to these PipelineResources in the Tasks.

For example:

spec:
  resources:
    - name: my-repo
      type: git
    - name: my-image
      type: image

Parameters

Pipelines can declare input parameters that must be supplied to the Pipeline during a PipelineRun. Pipeline parameters can be used to replace template values in PipelineTask parameters' values.

Parameter names are limited to alpha-numeric characters, - and _ and can only start with alpha characters and _. For example, fooIs-Bar_ is a valid parameter name, barIsBa$ or 0banana are not.

Each declared parameter has a type field, assumed to be string if not provided by the user. The other possible type is array — useful, for instance, when a dynamic number of string arguments need to be supplied to a task. When the actual parameter value is supplied, its parsed type is validated against the type field.

Usage

The following example shows how Pipelines can be parameterized, and these parameters can be passed to the Pipeline from a PipelineRun.

Input parameters in the form of $(params.foo) are replaced inside of the PipelineTask parameters' values (see also variable substitution).

The following Pipeline declares an input parameter called 'context', and uses it in the PipelineTask's parameter. The description and default fields for a parameter are optional, and if the default field is specified and this Pipeline is used by a PipelineRun without specifying a value for 'context', the default value will be used.

apiVersion: tekton.dev/v1alpha1
kind: Pipeline
metadata:
  name: pipeline-with-parameters
spec:
  params:
    - name: context
      type: string
      description: Path to context
      default: /some/where/or/other
  tasks:
    - name: build-skaffold-web
      taskRef:
        name: build-push
      params:
        - name: pathToDockerFile
          value: Dockerfile
        - name: pathToContext
          value: "$(params.context)"

The following PipelineRun supplies a value for context:

apiVersion: tekton.dev/v1alpha1
kind: PipelineRun
metadata:
  name: pipelinerun-with-parameters
spec:
  pipelineRef:
    name: pipeline-with-parameters
  params:
    - name: "context"
      value: "/workspace/examples/microservices/leeroy-web"

Pipeline Tasks

A Pipeline will execute a graph of Tasks (see ordering for how to express this graph). A valid Pipeline declaration must include a reference to at least one Task. Each Task within a Pipeline must have a valid name and task reference, for example:

tasks:
  - name: build-the-image
    taskRef:
      name: build-push

Declared PipelineResources can be given to Tasks in the Pipeline as inputs and outputs, for example:

spec:
  tasks:
    - name: build-the-image
      taskRef:
        name: build-push
      resources:
        inputs:
          - name: workspace
            resource: my-repo
        outputs:
          - name: image
            resource: my-image

Parameters can also be provided:

spec:
  tasks:
    - name: build-skaffold-web
      taskRef:
        name: build-push
      params:
        - name: pathToDockerFile
          value: Dockerfile
        - name: pathToContext
          value: /workspace/examples/microservices/leeroy-web

from

Sometimes you will have Pipeline Tasks that need to take as input the output of a previous Task, for example, an image built by a previous Task.

Express this dependency by adding from on PipelineResources that your Tasks need.

  • The (optional) from key on an input source defines a set of previous PipelineTasks (i.e. the named instance of a Task) in the Pipeline
  • When the from key is specified on an input source, the version of the resource that is from the defined list of tasks is used
  • from can support fan in and fan out
  • The from clause expresses ordering, i.e. the Pipeline Task which provides the PipelineResource must run before the Pipeline Task which needs that PipelineResource as an input
    • The name of the PipelineResource must correspond to a PipelineResource from the Task that the referenced PipelineTask gives as an output

For example see this Pipeline spec:

- name: build-app
  taskRef:
    name: build-push
  resources:
    outputs:
      - name: image
        resource: my-image
- name: deploy-app
  taskRef:
    name: deploy-kubectl
  resources:
    inputs:
      - name: image
        resource: my-image
        from:
          - build-app

The resource my-image is expected to be given to the deploy-app Task from the build-app Task. This means that the PipelineResource my-image must also be declared as an output of build-app.

This also means that the build-app Pipeline Task will run before deploy-app, regardless of the order they appear in the spec.

runAfter

Sometimes you will need to have Pipeline Tasks that need to run in a certain order, but they do not have an explicit output to input dependency (which is expressed via from). In this case you can use runAfter to indicate that a Pipeline Task should be run after one or more previous Pipeline Tasks.

For example see this Pipeline spec:

- name: test-app
  taskRef:
    name: make-test
  resources:
    inputs:
      - name: workspace
        resource: my-repo
- name: build-app
  taskRef:
    name: kaniko-build
  runAfter:
    - test-app
  resources:
    inputs:
      - name: workspace
        resource: my-repo

In this Pipeline, we want to test the code before we build from it, but there is no output from test-app, so build-app uses runAfter to indicate that test-app should run before it, regardless of the order they appear in the spec.

retries

Sometimes you need a policy for retrying tasks which have problems such as network errors, missing dependencies or upload problems. Any of those issues must be reflected as False (corev1.ConditionFalse) within the TaskRun Status Succeeded Condition. For that reason there is an optional attribute called retries which declares how many times that task should be retried in case of failure.

By default and in its absence there are no retries; its value is 0.

tasks:
  - name: build-the-image
    retries: 1
    taskRef:
      name: build-push

In this example, the task "build-the-image" will be executed and if the first run fails a second one would triggered. But, if that fails no more would triggered: a max of two executions.

conditions

Sometimes you will need to run tasks only when some conditions are true. The conditions field allows you to list a series of references to Conditions that are run before the task is run. If all of the conditions evaluate to true, the task is run. If any of the conditions are false, the Task is not run. Its status.ConditionSucceeded is set to False with the reason set to ConditionCheckFailed. However, unlike regular task failures, condition failures do not automatically fail the entire pipeline run -- other tasks that are not dependent on the task (via from or runAfter) are still run.

tasks:
  - name: conditional-task
    taskRef:
      name: build-push
    conditions:
      - conditionRef: my-condition
        params:
          - name: my-param
            value: my-value
        resources:
          - name: workspace
            resource: source-repo

In this example, my-condition refers to a Condition custom resource. The build-push task will only be executed if the condition evaluates to true.

Ordering

The Pipeline Tasks in a Pipeline can be connected and run in a graph, specifically a Directed Acyclic Graph or DAG. Each of the Pipeline Tasks is a node, which can be connected with an edge (i.e. a Graph) such that one will run before another (i.e. Directed), and the execution will eventually complete (i.e. Acyclic, it will not get caught in infinite loops).

This is done using:

For example see this Pipeline spec:

- name: lint-repo
  taskRef:
    name: pylint
  resources:
    inputs:
      - name: workspace
        resource: my-repo
- name: test-app
  taskRef:
    name: make-test
  resources:
    inputs:
      - name: workspace
        resource: my-repo
- name: build-app
  taskRef:
    name: kaniko-build-app
  runAfter:
    - test-app
  resources:
    inputs:
      - name: workspace
        resource: my-repo
    outputs:
      - name: image
        resource: my-app-image
- name: build-frontend
  taskRef:
    name: kaniko-build-frontend
  runAfter:
    - test-app
  resources:
    inputs:
      - name: workspace
        resource: my-repo
    outputs:
      - name: image
        resource: my-frontend-image
- name: deploy-all
  taskRef:
    name: deploy-kubectl
  resources:
    inputs:
      - name: my-app-image
        resource: my-app-image
        from:
          - build-app
      - name: my-frontend-image
        resource: my-frontend-image
        from:
          - build-frontend

This will result in the following execution graph:

        |            |
        v            v
     test-app    lint-repo
    /        \
   v          v
build-app  build-frontend
   \          /
    v        v
    deploy-all
  1. The lint-repo and test-app Pipeline Tasks will begin executing simultaneously. (They have no from or runAfter clauses.)
  2. Once test-app completes, both build-app and build-frontend will begin executing simultaneously (both runAfter test-app).
  3. When both build-app and build-frontend have completed, deploy-all will execute (it requires PipelineResources from both Pipeline Tasks).
  4. The entire Pipeline will be finished executing after lint-repo and deploy-all have completed.

Examples

For complete examples, see the examples folder.


Except as otherwise noted, the content of this page is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License, and code samples are licensed under the Apache 2.0 License.

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