DebOps - Your Debian-based data center in a box

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Your Debian-based data center in a box

The DebOps project provides a set of general-purpose Ansible roles that can be used to manage Debian or Ubuntu hosts. In addition, a default set of Ansible playbooks can be used to apply the provided roles in a controlled way, using Ansible inventory groups.

The roles are written with a high customization in mind, which can be done using Ansible inventory. This way the role and playbook code can be shared between multiple environments, with different configuration in to each one.

Services can be managed on a single host, or spread between multiple hosts. DebOps provides support for different SQL and NoSQL databases, web servers, programming languages and specialized applications useful in a data center environment or in a cluster. The project can also be used to deploy virtualization environments using KVM/libvirt, Docker or LXC technologies to manage virtual machines and/or containers.

You can find out more about DebOps features on the project's documentation page.

Quick start

Start a Docker container which acts as an Ansible Controller host with DebOps support, based on Debian Buster:

docker run -it --rm debops/debops
cd src/controller ; debops run common --diff

Or, create a Vagrant VM which acts as an Ansible Controller host:

git clone
cd debops && vagrant up && vagrant ssh
cd src/controller ; debops run common --diff

You can use configuration in the src/controller subdirectory to try out DebOps against the container/VM, or create your own DebOps project directory using debops project init command.

More quick start tips can be found in the DebOps quick start guide.


You can install the DebOps Python package, which includes the DebOps roles and playbooks, as well as additional scripts which can be used to setup separate project directories and run Ansible in a convenient way. To install the Python package with Ansible and other required dependencies, run the command:

pip install --user debops[ansible]

Alternatively, DebOps roles are available on Ansible Galaxy as an Ansible Collection which can be installed using the ansible-galaxy command:

ansible-galaxy collection install debops.debops

Read the installation instructions in the DebOps documentation for more details about required software and dependencies.

Getting started

Ansible uses SSH to connect to and manage the hosts. DebOps enforces the SSH security by disabling password authentication, therefore using SSH keys to connect to the hosts is strongly recommended. This can be changed using the inventory variables.

During initial deployments you might find that the firewall created by DebOps blocked you from accessing the hosts. Because of that it's advisable to have an out-of-band console access to the host which can be used to login and troubleshoot the connection.

Create a new environment within a DebOps "project directory", add some hosts in the Ansible inventory and run the default DebOps playbook against them to configure them:

# Create a new environment
debops project init ~/src/projects/my-environment
cd ~/src/projects/my-environment

Modify the 'ansible/inventory/hosts' file to suit your needs, for example

uncomment the local host to configure it with DebOps

Run the full playbook against all hosts in the inventory

debops run site

Run the common playbook against specific host in the inventory

debops run common -l <hostname>

You should read the Getting Started with DebOps guide for a more in-depth explanation of how the project can be used to manage multiple hosts via Ansible.


Create a fork of this repository and clone it to your workstation. Create a development DebOps environment and symlink the forked repository in it. Now you can create new playbooks/roles in the forked repository and see their results in the development environment.

git clone<username>/debops ~/src/<username>/debops
cd ~/src/<username>/debops
git remote add upstream

debops project init ~/src/projects/debops-devel cd ~/src/projects/debops-devel ln -s ~/src/<username>/debops debops

You can pull latest changes to the project from the upstream repository:

cd ~/src/<username>/debops
git checkout master
git fetch upstream
git rebase upstream/master

Read the development guide file for more details about the DebOps development process.


DebOps development is done via a distributed development model. New features and changes are prepared in a fork of the official repository and are published to the original repository via GitHub pull requests. PRs are reviewed by the DebOps developer team and if accepted, are merged in the main repository.

GPG-signed git commits are preferred to ensure authenticity.

Read the contributing guide file for more details about how to contribute to DebOps.


The DebOps project is licensed under the GNU General Public License 3.0 or later. You can find full text of the license in the LICENSES/GPL-3.0-or-later.txt file.

Some files included with the DebOps project use a different license. The licenses are marked in these files using the SPDX license identifiers and can be found in the LICENSES/ subdirectory. They are also included in the project tarballs, Ansible Collections and Python packages. The project uses the REUSE Specification and its associated tool to check and verify copyright and license information in all files.

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