ansible.builtin.include_vars – Load variables from files, dynamically within a task

Note

This module is part of ansible-core and included in all Ansible installations. In most cases, you can use the short module name include_vars even without specifying the collections: keyword. However, we recommend you use the FQCN for easy linking to the module documentation and to avoid conflicting with other collections that may have the same module name.

New in version 1.4: of ansible.builtin

Synopsis

  • Loads YAML/JSON variables dynamically from a file or directory, recursively, during task runtime.

  • If loading a directory, the files are sorted alphabetically before being loaded.

  • This module is also supported for Windows targets.

  • To assign included variables to a different host than inventory_hostname, use delegate_to and set delegate_facts=yes.

Note

This module has a corresponding action plugin.

Parameters

Parameter Choices/Defaults Comments
depth
integer
added in 2.2 of ansible.builtin
Default:
0
When using dir, this module will, by default, recursively go through each sub directory and load up the variables. By explicitly setting the depth, this module will only go as deep as the depth.
dir
path
added in 2.2 of ansible.builtin
The directory name from which the variables should be loaded.
If the path is relative and the task is inside a role, it will look inside the role's vars/ subdirectory.
If the path is relative and not inside a role, it will be parsed relative to the playbook.
extensions
list / elements=string
added in 2.3 of ansible.builtin
Default:
["json", "yaml", "yml"]
List of file extensions to read when using dir.
file
path
added in 2.2 of ansible.builtin
The file name from which variables should be loaded.
If the path is relative, it will look for the file in vars/ subdirectory of a role or relative to playbook.
files_matching
string
added in 2.2 of ansible.builtin
Limit the files that are loaded within any directory to this regular expression.
free-form
string
This module allows you to specify the 'file' option directly without any other options.
There is no 'free-form' option, this is just an indicator, see example below.
hash_behaviour
string
added in 2.12 of ansible.builtin
    Choices:
  • replace
  • merge
If set to merge, merges existing hash variables instead of overwriting them.
If omitted null, the behavior falls back to the global hash_behaviour configuration.
ignore_files
list / elements=string
added in 2.2 of ansible.builtin
List of file names to ignore.
ignore_unknown_extensions
boolean
added in 2.7 of ansible.builtin
    Choices:
  • no ←
  • yes
Ignore unknown file extensions within the directory.
This allows users to specify a directory containing vars files that are intermingled with non-vars files extension types (e.g. a directory with a README in it and vars files).
name
string
added in 2.2 of ansible.builtin
The name of a variable into which assign the included vars.
If omitted (null) they will be made top level vars.

Attributes

Attribute

Support

Description

action

Support: partial

While the action plugin does do some of the work it relies on the core engine to actually create the variables, that part cannot be overriden

Indicates this has a corresponding action plugin so some parts of the options can be executed on the controller

async

Support: none

Supports being used with the async keyword

become

Support: none

Is usable alongside become keywords

bypass_host_loop

Support: none

Forces a ‘global’ task that does not execute per host, this bypasses per host templating and serial, throttle and other loop considerations

Conditionals will work as if run_once is being used, variables used will be from the first available host

This action will not work normally outside of lockstep strategies

bypass_task_loop

Support: none

These tasks ignore the loop and with_ keywords

check_mode

Support: full

Can run in check_mode and return changed status prediction withought modifying target

connection

Support: none

Uses the target’s configured connection information to execute code on it

core

Support: partial

While parts of this action are implemented in core, other parts are still available as normal plugins and can be partially overridden

This is a ‘core engine’ feature and is not implemented like most task actions, so it is not overridable in any way via the plugin system.

delegation

Support: partial

while variable assignment can be delegated to a different host the execution context is always the current invenotory_hostname

connection variables, if set at all, would reflect the host it would target, even if we are not connecting at all in this case

Can be used in conjunction with delegate_to and related keywords

diff_mode

Support: none

Will return details on what has changed (or possibly needs changing in check_mode), when in diff mode

ignore_conditional

Support: none

The action is not subject to conditional execution so it will ignore the when: keyword

platform

Platforms: all

Target OS/families that can be operated against

tags

Support: full

Allows for the ‘tags’ keyword to control the selection of this action for execution

until

Support: full

Denotes if this action objeys until/retry/poll keywords

See Also

See also

ansible.builtin.set_fact

The official documentation on the ansible.builtin.set_fact module.

Controlling where tasks run: delegation and local actions

More information related to task delegation.

Examples

- name: Include vars of stuff.yaml into the 'stuff' variable (2.2).
  include_vars:
    file: stuff.yaml
    name: stuff

- name: Conditionally decide to load in variables into 'plans' when x is 0, otherwise do not. (2.2)
  include_vars:
    file: contingency_plan.yaml
    name: plans
  when: x == 0

- name: Load a variable file based on the OS type, or a default if not found. Using free-form to specify the file.
  include_vars: "{{ lookup('first_found', params) }}"
  vars:
    params:
      files:
        - '{{ansible_distribution}}.yaml'
        - '{{ansible_os_family}}.yaml'
        - default.yaml
      paths:
        - 'vars'

- name: Bare include (free-form)
  include_vars: myvars.yaml

- name: Include all .json and .jsn files in vars/all and all nested directories (2.3)
  include_vars:
    dir: vars/all
    extensions:
      - 'json'
      - 'jsn'

- name: Include all default extension files in vars/all and all nested directories and save the output in test. (2.2)
  include_vars:
    dir: vars/all
    name: test

- name: Include default extension files in vars/services (2.2)
  include_vars:
    dir: vars/services
    depth: 1

- name: Include only files matching bastion.yaml (2.2)
  include_vars:
    dir: vars
    files_matching: bastion.yaml

- name: Include all .yaml files except bastion.yaml (2.3)
  include_vars:
    dir: vars
    ignore_files:
      - 'bastion.yaml'
    extensions:
      - 'yaml'

- name: Ignore warnings raised for files with unknown extensions while loading (2.7)
  include_vars:
    dir: vars
    ignore_unknown_extensions: True
    extensions:
      - ''
      - 'yaml'
      - 'yml'
      - 'json'

Return Values

Common return values are documented here, the following are the fields unique to this module:

Key Returned Description
ansible_included_var_files
list / elements=string
added in 2.4 of ansible.builtin
success
A list of files that were successfully included

Sample:
['/path/to/file.json', '/path/to/file.yaml']


Authors

  • Allen Sanabria (@linuxdynasty)