Announcing a New Terraform Module for GCE

on Aug 31, 2017

I’m pleased to announce that Rancher has released a new Terraform module for deploying Rancher on Google Compute Engine (GCE). This complements our existing module for Amazon Web Services (AWS). Terraform is an excellent tool for managing infrastructure as code, and many of our users already make use of it elsewhere in their environments.

Using this module along with either GCE  or AWS to orchestrate Rancher gives you the ability to define the entirety of the stack—from the application layer being managed by Docker Compose or Kubernetes resource YML in Rancher all the way down to the servers and networks in the Terraform plan. This ability to create an entire production stack in one click is very powerful. For instance, if you want to replicate production to simulate a change, just spin up a clone in another account. Once you’re done with your tests, you can throw that environment away to save on costs as well as to avoid keeping state around that is prone to getting stale, or out of date with production.

To get started, we’ve provide a sample terraform plan that implements the module. You’ll need to provide a few parameters to the plan, which you can do interactively when you run it or by adding a file called “terraform.tfvars” to the same directory as the example.

First you’ll want to run the database plan to create the GCE CloudSQL instance. From the above directory:

cd database

terraform apply

Once this is complete, then you can run the management server plan. This plan will reference the previous database plan to get the connection details of the database.

cd ../management-cluster

terraform apply

This should create the GCE instances running RancherOS and Rancher server. Head over to the GCE management console to get the public IP address of your instance. You can connect to it on port 8080.

Remember the above is just an example plan that implements the module. You can also reference the module in an existing plan like so:

module "gce_compute" {

   source = "../../../modules/gce/compute"  // replace with relative path if you checked out module to different location

   name = "my-rancher-cluster"

   gce_project = "myproject"

   ... // remaining parameters


You can read more about how to use Terraform modules here:

Our terraform modules for both AWS and GCE are located on Github:

Happy Terraforming!


William Jimenez is a curious systems engineer who enjoys solving problems with computers, software and just about any complex system he can get his hands on. He enjoys helping others make sense of difficult problems. In his free-time he likes to tinker with amateur radio, cycle on the open road, and spend time with his family (so they don’t think he forgot about them).

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