How to create a new plugin

This is a short guide how new plugin can be added to the Infrared. It is recommended to read Plugins section prior following steps from that guide.

Create new Git repo for a plugin

Recommended way to store Infarerd plugin is to put it into a separate Git repo. So create and init new repo:

$ mkdir simple-plugin && cd simple-plugin
$ git init
Now you need to add two main files of every Infrared plugin:
  • plugin.spec: describes the user interface of the plugin (CLI)
  • main.yml: the default entry point anbile playbook which will be run by the Infrared

Create plugin.spec

The plugin.spec holds the descriptions of all the CLI flags as well as plugin name and plugin descriptions. Sample plugin specification file can be like:

   plugin_type: other
   entry_point: main.yml
    # the actual name of the plugin
        description: This is a simple demo plugin
        include_groups: ["Ansible options", "Common options"]
            - title: Option group.
                      type: Value
                      help: Simple option with default value
                      default: foo
                      ansible_variable: "myvar"
                      type: Bool
                      default: False
Config section:
  • plugin_type:
    Depending of what plugin is intended to do, can be provision, install, test or other. See plugin specification for details.
  • entry_point:
    The main playbook for the plugin. by default this will refer to main.yml file but can be changed to ant other file.
  • plugin name under the subparsers
    Infrared extends it CLI with that name. It is recommended to use dash-separated-lowercase-words for plugin names.
  • include_groups: list what standard flags should be included to the plugin CLI.
    Usually we include “Ansible options” to provide ansible specific options and “Common Options” to get --extra-vars, --output and --dry-run. See plugins include groups for more information.
  • groups: the list of options groups
    Groups several logically connected options.
  • options: the list of options in a group.
    Infrared allows to define different types of options, set option default value, mark options as required etc. Check the plugins option types for details

Create main playbook

Now when plugin specification is ready we need to put some business logic into a plugin. Infrared collects user input from command line and pass it to the ansible by calling main playbook - that is configured as entry_point in plugins.spec.

The main playbook is a regular ansible playbook and can look like:

- hosts: localhost
      - name: debug user variables
            var: other.option

      - name: check bool flag
            msg: "User flag is set"
        when: other.flag

By default, all the options provided by user goes to the plugin type namespace. Dashes in option names translated to the dots (.). So for --option1 bar infrared will create the other.option1: bar ansible variable.

It’s possible to assign a user defined ansible variable to an option by specifying ansible_variable in plugin.spec(refer to plugin.spec sample).

Push changes to the remote repo

Commit all the files:

$ git add .
$ git commit -m "Initial commit"

Add the URL to the remote repo (for example a GitHub repo) and push all the changes:

$ git remote add origin <remote repository>
$ git push origin master

Add plugin to the infrared

Now you are ready to install and use your plugin. Install infrared and add plugin by providing url to your plugin repo:

$ ir plugin add <remote repo>
$ ir plugin list

This should display the list of plugins and you should have your plugin name there:

│ Type      │ Name               │
│ provision │ beaker             │
│           │ virsh              │
│ other     │ simple-plugin      │
│           │ collect-logs       │

Run plugin

Run plugin with infrared and check for the help message:

$ ir simple-plugin --help

You should see user defined option as well as the common options like –extra-args.

Run ir command and check the playbook output:

$ ir simple-plugin --options1 HW  --flag yes