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Ansible dynamic inventory for bosh deployments

Project description


Ansible 2 dynamic inventory


You can install it by running

$ python install

or using pip:

$ pip install bosh_inventory

Also, you can copy and run it directly by calling the program instead of bosh-inventory.

Once it is installed:

$ bosh-inventory  --help
usage: bosh-inventory [-h] [--list]

Program to create an ansible inventory from all the deployments, jobs and
instances managed by a BOSH Director.

optional arguments:
  -h, --help  show this help message and exit
  --list      Enable JSON output for dynamic ansible inventory

bosh-inventory reads BOSH_CONFIG environment variable pointing to the configuration
file used by Bosh client (defaults to '~/.bosh/config' or '~/.bosh_config') in
order to get the credentials from it. You can define additional inventory
parameters via BOSH_ANSIBLE_INVENTORY_PARAMS environment variable, for example:
BOSH_ANSIBLE_INVENTORY_PARAMS="ansible_user=vcap ansible_ssh_pass=blabla". Be aware
that maybe Python2 (required by ansible) is not present in the default location,
but you can use this variable to specify "ansible_python_interpreter=/path/to/python".
If you use Bosh cli v2, you also will need to define the variable
BOSH_ENVIRONMENT in order to targe the correct director.

The environment variable BOSH_ANSIBLE_INVENTORY_VARS defines a list of
entries which can appear as inventory variables for each VM. The list of values
you can use is here:,
for example BOSH_ANSIBLE_INVENTORY_VARS="state bootstrap" will add
"state=started bootstrap=false" to each inventory entry.

The environment variable BOSH_ANSIBLE_INVENTORY_INSTANCES, defines the VM name
will have in the inventory. If it 'dns' it will build the inventory entry with
the dns names given by Bosh Director (if dns is enabled in Bosh, otherwise it
will fallback to autogenerated names and include the ip address for each
instance), if 'vm_cid' (default) it will be using the name of the VM as it is
in the IaaS. You can see all parameters supported in
To force always the inclusion of the IP in the inventory,  just define the
variable BOSH_ANSIBLE_INVENTORY_IP as a positive integer indicating the index 
(starting from 1) of the IP which will be taken (for VMs with multiple IPs),
0 disabled the feature. The default value for BOSH_ANSIBLE_INVENTORY_IP is 1.

BOSH_ANSIBLE_INVENTORY_CALL defines the way the inventoy is populated. It can
be 'instances'(default) or 'vms'. Instances is faster because it does not query
the Bosh Agents, so it gets the desired state. 'vms' will query the Bosh Agents
in order to get the current state, so depending on the situation, it can take a
lot of time to get the result.

You can also limit the inventory to one specific deployment by setting the value
of the environment variable BOSH_ANSIBLE_DEPLOYMENT to the name of it.

0.3.0, 2017 Jose Riguera <>

To use it, just point the env variable BOSH_CONFIG to your bosh configuration. It will read all parameters from there.

By default, it will return an INI format inventory:

$ export BOSH_CONFIG=~/.bosh_config
$ bosh-inventory > ansible-inventory

Or using directly with ansible:

$ export BOSH_CONFIG=~/.bosh_config
$ export BOSH_ANSIBLE_INVENTORY_PARAMS="ansible_user=vcap"
$ export BOSH_ANSIBLE_INVENTORY_VARS="ansible_user=vcap"
$ ansible "runner_z*" -i $(which bosh-inventory) -a "sudo /sbin/reboot"

You can also point to one deployment by using BOSH_ANSIBLE_DEPLOYMENT, and only those instances will appear:

$ export BOSH_ANSIBLE_DEPLOYMENT=concourse
$ bosh-inventory


web-0 ansible_host= ansible_user=vcap

worker-0 ansible_host= ansible_user=vcap
worker-1 ansible_host= ansible_user=vcap

db-0 ansible_host= ansible_user=vcap

Be aware that python is not present in the default location, but you can define it by using BOSH_ANSIBLE_INVENTORY_PARAMS="ansible_python_interpreter=/path/to/python"

Example: apply a playbook to all CF runners

First of all, make sure your bosh client is targeting the correct Bosh Director!!!!

bosh status


  Name       devBosh2
  URL        https://x.x.x.x:25555
  Version    1.3232.6.0 (00000000)
  User       admin
  UUID       c4f5c583-1bc3-427f-8ded-b3f5e107f970
  CPI        vsphere
  dns        enabled (domain_name: microbosh)
  compiled_package_cache disabled
  snapshots  disabled

  not set

Type bosh vms --details to confirm!

bosh-inventory needs some variables to work:

# Point to the bosh config targeting the desired director!
export BOSH_CONFIG=~/.bosh_config
# Define the name of the deployment (to avoid getting other vms)
# Foce the use of IPs (instead of DNS names if bosh has enabled dns)
# Define the ssh user and other ansible parameters
export BOSH_ANSIBLE_INVENTORY_PARAMS="ansible_user=nsaadmin  host_key_checking=false"

Check if it is working:

ansible runner_z1  -i /usr/local/bin/bosh-inventory   -m ping

If so, just run the playbook.

ansible-playbook -i /usr/local/bin/bosh-inventory  cf-warden.yml

Upload to PyPI

  1. Create a .pypirc configuration file. This file holds your information for authenticating with PyPI.

    index-servers = pypi
  2. Login and upload it to PyPI

    python register -r pypi
    python sdist upload -r pypi


  • Add support for Bosh director with UAA auth


Springer Nature Platform Engineering, Jose Riguera Lopez (

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