» Command: init
terraform init command is used to initialize a working directory
containing Terraform configuration files. This is the first command that should
be run after writing a new Terraform configuration or cloning an existing one
from version control. It is safe to run this command multiple times.
terraform init [options] [DIR]
This command performs several different initialization steps in order to prepare a working directory for use. More details on these are in the sections below, but in most cases it is not necessary to worry about these individual steps.
This command is always safe to run multiple times, to bring the working directory up to date with changes in the configuration. Though subsequent runs may give errors, this command will never delete your existing configuration or state.
If no arguments are given, the configuration in the current working directory
is initialized. It is recommended to run Terraform with the current working
directory set to the root directory of the configuration, and omit the
» General Options
The following options apply to all of (or several of) the initialization steps:
-input=trueAsk for input if necessary. If false, will error if input was required.
-lock=falseDisable locking of state files during state-related operations.
-lock-timeout=<duration>Override the time Terraform will wait to acquire a state lock. The default is
0s(zero seconds), which causes immediate failure if the lock is already held by another process.
-no-colorDisable color codes in the command output.
-upgradeOpt to upgrade modules and plugins as part of their respective installation steps. See the sections below for more details.
» Copy a Source Module
terraform init assumes that the working directory already
contains a configuration and will attempt to initialize that configuration.
Optionally, init can be run against an empty directory with the
-from-module=MODULE-SOURCE option, in which case the given module will be
copied into the target directory before any other initialization steps are
This special mode of operation supports two use-cases:
Given a version control source, it can serve as a shorthand for checking out a configuration from version control and then initializing the work directory for it.
If the source refers to an example configuration, it can be copied into a local directory to be used as a basis for a new configuration.
For routine use it is recommended to check out configuration from version
control separately, using the version control system's own commands. This way
it is possible to pass extra flags to the version control system when necessary,
and to perform other preparation steps (such as configuration generation, or
activating credentials) before running
» Backend Initialization
During init, the root configuration directory is consulted for backend configuration and the chosen backend is initialized using the given configuration settings.
Re-running init with an already-initalized backend will update the working
directory to use the new backend settings. Depending on what changed, this
may result in interactive prompts to confirm migration of workspace states.
-force-copy option suppresses these prompts and answers "yes" to the
migration questions. The
-reconfigure option disregards any existing
configuration, preventing migration of any existing state.
To skip backend configuration, use
-backend=false. Note that some other init
steps require an initialized backend, so it is recommended to use this flag only
when the working directory was already previously initialized for a particular
-backend-config=... option can be used for
partial backend configuration,
in situations where the backend settings are dynamic or sensitive and so cannot
be statically specified in the configuration file.
» Child Module Installation
During init, the configuration is searched for
module blocks, and the source
code for referenced modules is retrieved from the locations
given in their
Re-running init with modules already installed will install the sources for
any modules that were added to configuration since the last init, but will not
change any already-installed modules. Use
-upgrade to override this behavior,
updating all modules to the latest available source code.
To skip child module installation, use
-get=false. Note that some other init
steps can complete only when the module tree is complete, so it's recommended
to use this flag only when the working directory was already previously
initialized with its child modules.
» Plugin Installation
During init, the configuration is searched for both direct and indirect references to providers, and the plugins for the providers are retrieved from the plugin repository. The downloaded plugins are installed to a subdirectory of the working directory, and are thus local to that working directory.
Re-running init with plugins already installed will install plugins only for
any providers that were added to the configuration since the last init. Use
-upgrade to additionally update already-installed plugins to the latest
versions that comply with the version constraints given in configuration.
To skip plugin installation, use
The automatic plugin installation behavior can be overridden by extracting
the desired providers into a local directory and using the additional option
-plugin-dir=PATH. When this option is specified, only the given directory
is consulted, which prevents Terraform from making requests to the plugin
repository or looking for plugins in other local directories. Passing an empty
-plugin-dir removes any previously recorded paths.
Custom plugins can be used along with automatically installed plugins by
placing them in
terraform.d/plugins/OS_ARCH/ inside the directory being
initialized. Plugins found here will take precedence if they meet the required
constraints in the configuration. The
init command will continue to
automatically download other plugins as needed.
When plugins are automatically downloaded and installed, by default the
contents are verified against an official HashiCorp release signature to
ensure that they were not corrupted or tampered with during download. It is
recommended to allow Terraform to make these checks, but if desired they may
be disabled using the option
terraform init in automation
For teams that use Terraform as a key part of a change management and deployment pipeline, it can be desirable to orchestrate Terraform runs in some sort of automation in order to ensure consistency between runs, and provide other interesting features such as integration with version control hooks.
There are some special concerns when running
init in such an environment,
including optionally making plugins available locally to avoid repeated
re-installation. For more information, see
Running Terraform in Automation.