We’ve looked previously at using the open source tool https://www.packer.io/intro/ from Hashicorp to automate the process of building Azure VM images, which can then be consumed using either single VMs or VM scale sets. By using this tool and some PowerShell DSC scripts, we have been able to automate the process of spinning up a VM in Azure, installing the required software and configuration, running Sysprep and capturing an image. So far we have done this by running our Packer script manually from the command line.
Don’t forget to check out the other parts in this series: Part 1 – Version Control Part 2 – Testing Part 3- Build Initially this might seem like a bit of an odd topic, “Build” in a software development process usually refers to the process of compiling an application and preparing it for distribution (creating MSI files etc.). Whilst we are writing infrastructure as code, there’s no compilation involved, no creating of installers, so what are we doing here?