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PowerShift command plugin for working in S2I images.

Project description

This package provides a plugin for the powershift command line client which contains commands for assisting in the building and running of Python S2I based images with OpenShift.

This includes adding OpenShift V2 style action hooks and job scripts, as well as extensions to additionally allow environment variables to be dynamically set for both builds and deployments. Additional hooks scripts can be provided related to verifying an image after a build, performing initial setup of data required by an application, data migration on deployments with updated application source code, readiness checks and liveness checks. Commands are also provided for starting an interactive shell or running programs with the same environment as an application is deployed with.

This package requires that the powershift-cli package also be installed. To install the powershift-cli package, and the powershift command line program contained in that package, along with this plugin, you should use pip to install the package powershift-cli[image], rather than just powershift-image.

Be aware that this package is only usable in the context of building and deploying an application being built into an image using the Python S2I builder. There is no point installing it in your personal development environment as it is dependent on the specific environment of the Python S2I builder image and how it adds application source code to that image during the build process.

The normal way which the package would be installed for use, would be to add to the .s2i/bin/assemble script of application source code being used with the Python S2I builder:

pip install --no-cache-dir powershift-cli[image]
exec powershift image assemble

A corresponding .s2i/bin/run script would be also be created which contains:

exec powershift image run

Both these scripts should be made executable.

All other commands provided by the plugin would then always be executed in the running container created by the Python S2I builder these scripts were incorporated in.

For more details on how to install the powershift command line program and available plugins see:

Available commands

To see all available commands you can use inbuilt help features of the powershift image.

Usage: powershift image [OPTIONS] COMMAND [ARGS]...

  Assemble S2I based image and run application.

  Extends S2I based image build and execution to incorporate action
  hooks which can customize installation and setup of the application,
  as well as the environment used when the application is run.

  Provides the means to create an interactive shell or run commands in
  the container with the same environment as the application.

  Also, allows the manual running of custom action hooks for initial
  setup of data, run data migration when updating to a new version of
  the application, verify an application after a build, test for
  readiness or liveness of an application.

  --help  Show this message and exit.

  alive     Trigger action hook which tests if alive.
  assemble  Runs the build process for the image.
  exec      Run a command with application environment.
  jobs      Run job scripts in specified category.
  migrate   Triggers action hook to migrate any data.
  ready     Trigger action hook which tests if ready.
  run       Runs the application built into the image.
  setup     Triggers action hook to setup any data.
  shell     Create a shell with application environment.
  verify    Trigger action hook which verifies image.

Types of Action Hooks

Under OpenShift V2, the action hooks which were provided were:

  • pre_build - Executed prior to building application artefacts.

  • build - Executed after building application artefacts.

  • deploy - Executed prior to starting the application.

  • post_deploy - Executed after the application has been started.

Equivalent hooks to all but post_deploy can readily be implemented in V3. The reason that post_deploy cannot be implemented is that when using Docker, the application is generally left running as process ID 1. That is, no process manager is usually used within a running Docker container.

That there is no overarching process manager makes it somewhat difficult to run something after the application has been started as the application actually keeps control and is not running in background. Solutions such as running post_deploy in the background, delayed by a sleep, isn’t practical as you can’t be sure the application has actually been started properly before running it.

If required, anything like post_deploy is better implemented outside of the container, using features of OpenShift such as lifecycle hooks.

As well as not implementing post_deploy, personal experience from working in Python suggests that the action hooks are better off modelled a bit differently than in V2 with additional functionality added. For this implementation though we have to keep reasonably close to the original in OpenShift V2 as it isn’t possible to break open the original S2I assemble and run scripts to insert additional hook points. This does impose certain limitations on pre_build as explained below.

Two new action hooks that are added though are build_env and deploy_env. Technically these aren’t hook scripts in the way the existing OpenShift V2 actions are. This is because they will not be executed as a distinct process, but inline to the replacement assemble and run scripts. Their purpose is to allow additional environment variables to be dynamically set. This can be important when needing to set environment variables dynamically based on information extracted from packages installed as part of the build process.

Finally a run action hook is also allowed. This if supplied will supersede the run script provided in the S2I builder. It is expected that it runs the application to be deployed. It must not return and must ensure the application run inherits the process ID of the script.

Using the Action Hooks

To add your own action hooks, create the following files as necessary:

  • .s2i/action_hooks/pre_build

  • .s2i/action_hooks/build_env

  • .s2i/action_hooks/build

  • .s2i/action_hooks/deploy_env

  • .s2i/action_hooks/deploy

  • .s2i/action_hooks/run

The pre_build, build, deploy and run scripts must all be executable. This is necessary due to a bug in Docker support for some file systems. It is not possible for the assemble script to do chmod +x on scripts prior to running. If you forget the implementation of actions hooks provided will warn you.

The pre_build, build, deploy and run scripts would normally be shell scripts, but could technically be any executable program you can run to do what you need. If using a shell script, it is recommended to set:

set -eo pipefail

so that the scripts will fail fast, with an error propagated back up to the assemble or run script. You can print out messages from these scripts if necessary to help debugging.

The build_env and deploy_env scripts must be shell scripts. They do not need to be executable nor have a #! line. They will be executed inline to the assemble and run scripts, being interpreted as a bash script.

These build_env and deploy_env scripts can be used to set any environment variables you need to set. It is not necessary to export variables as any variables set in the scripts will be automatically exported. Being evaluated as a shell script, you can include shell logic or use inline parameter substitution. You can thus do things like:


Just keep in mind that if including complicated logic that requires temporary variables, that they will be automatically exported. You may wish to use shell functions and bash local variables to restrict what is exported to whatever is set at global scope.

You should not print any messages from deploy_env as that will be executed for any shell session and the output may interfere with the result when running one off commands using powershift image exec.

In the case of the pre_build action hook, be aware that unlike in V2, the application source code will not have been copied into place at that point. If this script needs to reference any files which are provided with the application source code, it will need to access them from the /tmp/src directory where they are held before being moved into the correct location by the original assemble script.

Running Action Commands

In addition to the action hooks which will be executed during the build and deployment of the application, you can also provide additional action hooks which can be executed with specific commands. These are:

  • verify - Commands to verify an image. Would be run from postCommit action of a build configuration to test an image before it is used in a deployment.

  • ready - Commands to test whether the application is ready to accept requests. Would be run from a readiness health check of a deployment configuration.

  • alive - Commands to test whether the application is still running okay. Would be run from a liveness health check of a deployment configuration.

  • setup - Commands to initialize any data for an application, including perhaps setting up a database. Would be run manually, or if guarded by a check against being run multiple times, could be run from a deploy action hook script.

  • migrate - Commands to perform any data migration, including perhaps updating a database. Would be run from a mid lifecycle hook if using the recreate deployment strategy, or from a deploy action hook script if it is not a scaled application and not using rolling deployments.

An appropriate executable script with corresponding names would be added to the .s2i/action_hooks directory. It would be run with the corresponding sub command of powershift image. In all cases the deploy_env script will be sourced to ensure that the same environment variables as would be used for the deployment of the application are also used for these.

The benefit of using these action hooks triggered by a command, is that only the unchanging action command need be listed in build or deployment configurations if required. This makes it possible to make changes to what is run from the hook script and you do not need to ensure you update the build or deployment configuration in sync with the changes to the application source code.

Executing Cron Job Scripts

Under OpenShift V2, in addition to the action hooks mechanism, it was also possible to provide sets of scripts to be executed at regular intervals by cron running in the OpenShift environment.

This script doesn’t provide a replacement for cron, but does provide a helper command for executing a set of scripts under a specified category, such as ‘hourly’. This command could be run in a distinct container to the running application from an OpenShift CronJob, or by a daemon process running in the application container which implements cron like functionality.

There is no restriction on the category names for the job scripts, but as a starting point it is suggested you use the same names supported under OpenShift V2. For each category you want to use, create a sub directory under .s2i/jobs. For example:

  • .s2i/jobs/minutely

  • .s2i/jobs/hourly

  • .s2i/jobs/daily

  • .s2i/jobs/weekly

  • .s2i/jobs/monthly

In that sub directory, add your jobs script and make the script file executable. For example, if you were running a web application which used Django, you might create the cron job script:


where the contents of the executable script file contains:


set -eo pipefail

python clearsessions

The command used with the OpenShift CronJob set to be executed hourly would then be:

powershift image jobs hourly

Interactive Shell and Commands

If needing to start an interactive shell with the same environment as the deployed application, use powershift image shell. To execute a one off command with the same environment, use powershift image exec and supply the program and options as arguments.

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