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Build an Image for an AWS EC2 Instance with Packer

Last Updated May 3rd 2022, 12:41:16 am

In this tutorial you will build a t2.micro Amazon EC2 AMI.[1]

The following section contains a complete Packer template that can be used to build an AWS Ubuntu AMI in the us-west-2 region.

Create a file named aws-ubuntu.pkr.hcl and add the following code:

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packer {
required_plugins {
amazon = {
version = ">= 0.0.2"
source = "github.com/hashicorp/amazon"
}
}
}

source "amazon-ebs" "ubuntu" {
ami_name = "learn-packer-linux-aws"
instance_type = "t2.micro"
region = "us-west-2"
source_ami_filter {
filters = {
name = "ubuntu/images/*ubuntu-xenial-16.04-amd64-server-*"
root-device-type = "ebs"
virtualization-type = "hvm"
}
most_recent = true
owners = ["099720109477"]
}
ssh_username = "ubuntu"
}

build {
name = "learn-packer"
sources = [
"source.amazon-ebs.ubuntu"
]
}

Authenticate to AWS

Before you can build the AMI, you need to provide your AWS credentials to Packer as environment variables.

These credentials should have permissions to create, modify and delete EC2 instances.

For the full list IAM permissions required to run the amazon-ebs builder perform a google search.

Add your AWS credentials as two environment variables, AWS_ACCESS_KEY_ID and AWS_SECRET_ACCESS_KEY.

You may need to also export your AWS_SESSION_TOKEN and AWS_SESSION_EXPIRATION as environment variables.

LINUX

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$ export AWS_ACCESS_KEY_ID=YOUR_ACCESS_KEY
$ export AWS_SECRET_ACCESS_KEY=YOUR_SECRET_KEY

WINDWS

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> set AWS_ACCESS_KEY_ID=YOUR_ACCESS_KEY
> set AWS_SECRET_ACCESS_KEY=YOUR_SECRET_KEY

Build

Run through the following Pack commands to build the image(s):

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Initialize your Packer configuration.

$ packer init .

Format your template.

$ packer fmt .

Validate your template.

$ packer validate .

Build the image.

$ packer .

Verify

Visit the AWS AMI Wizard page in the same region to verify that Packer successfully built your AMI.


  1. https://learn.hashicorp.com/tutorials/packer/aws-get-started-build-image?in=packer/aws-get-started ↩︎