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NetScaler ansible docker image

To make the running of netscaler ansible modules easier a ready to run image exists which does not require any software packages installed on the host other than the docker engine.

It is suitable for running quickly and easily simple playbooks that are using ansible modules and core ansible modules.

The image is not suitable for running any arbitraty ansible playbook since many non core modules require extra dependencies which this docker image does not have installed.


The installation is quite simple.

docker pull giorgosnikolopoulos/netscaler-ansible:latest


The entrypoint of the docker image is the ansible-playbook command.

This means that it can be used as drop in replacement of this command.


docker run --rm giorgosnikolopoulos/netscaler-ansible:latest

Will output the help for the command ansible-playbook

To run a playbook we need to map a directory of the host to a directory of the docker container so that the inventory and playbook files are accessible from inside the docker container.

So provided we have in the current directory an inventory file and a playbook by running the following

docker run --rm -v $(pwd):/pwd giorgosnikolopoulos/netscaler-ansible -i inventory playbook.yml

The playbook will be executed.

Of course the container needs to have also access to the NetScaler node being configured otherwise the execution will fail.


Following is an example of how to use the container along with a NetScaler CPX deployment.

We will use docker-compose to setup our testbed using the following compose docker-compose.yaml file.

version: '2'

        image: giorgosnikolopoulos/cpx:12.0-41.22
         - '22'
         - '80'
         - '443'
         - '161'
         EULA: 'yes'
         core: -1
       tty: true
       stdin_open: true
       privileged: true

       image: giorgosnikolopoulos/netscaler-ansible:latest
       tty: true
       stdin_open: true
         - .:/pwd
         - cpx

Note that in addition to instantiating the cpx and netscaler-ansible containers we also map the current directory to the working directory of the netscaler-ansible container and we also create a link to the cpx container.

This has the effect that the host's current directory is exposed as it is inside the docker container and that there is a network reference to the cpx container which can be used instead of the ip address of the container.

For our example we will use the following inventory.txt file.


netscaler_cpx nsip=cpx nitro_user=nsroot nitro_pass=nsroot

For our sample playbook we will use the following play.yaml


- hosts: netscaler
  gather_facts: false

    - name: lb vserver
      delegate_to: localhost
        nsip: "{{ nsip }}"
        nitro_user: "{{ nitro_user }}"
        nitro_pass: "{{ nitro_pass }}"

        name: lb-vserver-1
        servicetype: HTTP
        port: 80

    - name: cs action
        delegate_to: localhost
          nsip: "{{ nsip }}"
          nitro_user: "{{ nitro_user }}"
          nitro_pass: "{{ nitro_pass }}"

          name: action1
          targetlbvserver: lb-vserver-1

These files are located in the same directory as the docker-compose.yaml file.

First we bring the containers up.

docker-compose up -d

Verify that the containers are setup by running

docker-compose ps

You should see that the cpx container is up and running and that the netscaler-ansible container has exited.

From this point on we can use the docker-compose run netscaler-ansible command to run our playbooks.

To run the sample playbook run:

docker-compose run netscaler-ansible -i inventory.txt play.yaml

You should see the output of the playbook run just as if you had run ansible-playbook normally.

Any valid ansible-playbook option can be passed on the command line to the netscaler-ansible container.

When you no longer need the testbed you can tear it down by running:

docker-compose stop
docker-compose rm