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Ansible Inventory Output Module

ansible output module creates Ansible inventory (hosts.yml, host_vars, and group_vars) and Ansible configuration file (ansible.cfg) file. It’s invoked by specifying -o ansible parameter in netlab create command1.

The provider output module can take one or two optional destination file names separated by a comma. The first file name specifies Ansible inventory file (default: hosts.yml), the second one Ansible configuration file (default: ansible.cfg)

A single formatting modifier can be used to modify the distribution of information between hosts.yml, host_vars and group_vars:

  • min – Ansible inventory file contains all known host- and group information. host_vars and group_vars are not created2.

  • dirs (default) – Ansible inventory file contains minimal amount of information3. Host- and group directories are created under host_vars and group_vars. Each host- or group directory within host_vars or group_vars contain topology.yml file with host- or group variables. This format allows you to add Ansible inventory information (create additional files within host- or group subdirectories) without interfering with ansible output module.

  • files – Ansible inventory file contains minimal amount of information. Per-host or per-group files are created in host_vars and group_vars. Do not modify those files; they will be overwritten the next time you run netlab create command.


netlab create also invokes the provider output module when no output formats are specified in the netlab create command.


Existing host_vars and group_vars directories are not removed. Make sure you won’t get information overload when trying out different Ansible inventory formats.


Node id and IP address (ansible_host)