» Command: refresh

The terraform refresh command reads the current settings from all managed remote objects and updates the Terraform state to match.

This won't modify your real remote objects, but it will modify the the Terraform state.

You shouldn't typically need to use this command, because Terraform automatically performs the same refreshing actions as a part of creating a plan in both the terraform plan and terraform apply commands. This command is here primarily for backward compatibility, but we don't recommend using it because it provides no opportunity to review the effects of the operation before updating the state.

» Usage

Usage: terraform refresh [options]

This command is effectively an alias for the following command:

terraform apply -refresh-only -auto-approve

Consequently, it supports all of the same options as terraform apply except that it does not accept a saved plan file, it doesn't allow selecting a planning mode other than "refresh only", and -auto-approve is always enabled.

Automatically applying the effect of a refresh is risky, because if you have misconfigured credentials for one or more providers then the provider may be misled into thinking that all of the managed objects have been deleted, and thus remove all of the tracked objects without any confirmation prompt.

Instead, we recommend using the following command in order to get the same effect but with the opportunity to review the the changes that Terraform has detected before committing them to the state:

terraform apply -refresh-only

This alternative command will present an interactive prompt for you to confirm the detected changes.

The -refresh-only option for terraform plan and terraform apply was introduced in Terraform v0.15.4. For prior versions you must use terraform refresh directly if you need this behavior, while taking into account the warnings above. Wherever possible, avoid using terraform refresh explicitly and instead rely on Terraform's behavior of automatically refreshing existing objects as part of creating a normal plan.