hapistrano: A deployment library for Haskell applications

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Hapistrano makes it easy to reliably deploy Haskell applications to a server.

Following popular libraries like Ruby's Capistrano, Hapistrano does the work of building the application with dependencies into a distinct folder, and then atomically moves a symlink to the latest complete build.

This allows for atomic switchovers to new application code after the build is complete. Rollback is even simpler, since Hapistrano can just point the current symlink to the previous release.

See the project readme on GitHub for more information.

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Versions [RSS],,,,, 0.2.1,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,
Change log CHANGELOG.md
Dependencies aeson (>=2.0 && <3.0), ansi-terminal (>=0.9 && <0.12), async (>= && <2.4), base (>=4.9 && <5.0), exceptions (>=0.10 && <0.11), filepath (>=1.2 && <1.5), formatting (>=6.2 && <8.0), gitrev (>=1.2 && <1.4), hapistrano, mtl (>=2.0 && <3.0), optparse-applicative (>=0.11 && <0.17), path (>=0.5 && <0.9), path-io (>=1.2 && <1.7), process (>=1.4 && <1.7), stm (>=2.4 && <2.6), time (>=1.5 && <1.11), transformers (>=0.4 && <0.6), typed-process (>=0.2 && <0.3), yaml (>=0.11.7 && <0.12) [details]
License MIT
Copyright 2015-Present Stack Builders Inc.
Author Justin Leitgeb
Maintainer hackage@stackbuilders.com
Category System
Home page https://github.com/stackbuilders/hapistrano
Bug tracker https://github.com/stackbuilders/hapistrano/issues
Source repo head: git clone https://github.com/stackbuilders/hapistrano.git
Uploaded by stackbuilders at 2023-02-16T13:07:04Z
Reverse Dependencies 1 direct, 0 indirect [details]
Executables hap
Downloads 28950 total (124 in the last 30 days)
Rating 2.25 (votes: 2) [estimated by Bayesian average]
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Status Docs available [build log]
Last success reported on 2023-02-16 [all 1 reports]

Readme for hapistrano-

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Hapistrano is a deployment library for Haskell applications similar to Ruby's Capistrano.


We created Hapistrano because:

  • Deploys should be simple, but as close to atomic as possible (eg, they shouldn't require much application downtime).
  • Rollback should be trivial to achieve to bring the application back to the last-deployed state.
  • Deploys shouldn't fail because of dependency problems.

How it Works

Hapistrano (like Capistrano for Ruby) deploys applications to a new directory marked with a timestamp on the remote host. It creates this new directory quickly by placing a git repository for caching purposes on the remote server.

When the build process completes, it switches a symlink to the current release directory, and optionally restarts the web server.

By default, Hapistrano keeps the last five releases on the target host filesystem and deletes previous releases to avoid filling up the disk.


Hapistrano looks for a configuration file called hap.yaml that typically looks like this:

deploy_path: '/var/projects/my-project'
host: user@myserver.com
port: 2222
# To perform version control operations
repo: 'https://github.com/stackbuilders/hapistrano.git'
revision: origin/master
# To copy the contents of the directory
local_directory: '/tmp/my-project'
  - stack setup
  - stack build
restart_command: systemd restart my-app-service

The following parameters are required:

  • deploy_path — the root of the deploy target on the remote host.
  • Related to the source of the repository, you have the following options:
    • Git repository default — consists of two parameters. When these are set, hapistrano will perform version control related operations. Note: Only GitHub is supported.
      • repo — the origin repository.
      • revision — the SHA1 or branch to deploy. If a branch, you will need to specify it as origin/branch_name due to the way that the cache repo is configured.
    • local_directory — when this parameter is set, hapistrano will copy the contents of the directory.

The following parameters are optional:

  • host — the target host, if missing, localhost will be assumed (which is useful for testing and playing with hap locally). You can specify the user that is going to connect to the server here. Example: user@server.com.
  • port — SSH port number to use. If missing, 22 will be used.
  • shell — Shell to use. Currently supported: zsh ans bash. If missing, Bash will be used.
  • ssh_args — Optional ssh arguments. Only -p is passed via the port variable.
  • build_script — instructions how to build the application in the form of shell commands.
  • restart_command — if you need to restart a remote web server after a successful rollback, specify the command that you use in this variable. It will be run after both deploy and rollback.
  • vc_action - Controls if version control related activity should take place. It defaults to true. When you don't want activity like cloning, fetching etc. to take place, set this to false.
  • linux - Specify, whether or not, the target system where Hapistrano will deploy to is a GNU/Linux or other UNIX (g.e. BSD, Mac). This is set to true by default so unless the target system is not GNU/Linux, this should not be necessary. The platform where Hapistrano is running won't affect the available options for commands (g.e. A Mac deploying to an Ubuntu machine, doesn't need this flag)
  • release_format - The release timestamp format, the '--release-format' argument passed via the CLI takes precedence over this value. If neither CLI nor configuration file value is specified, it defaults to 'short'
  • keep_releases - The number of releases to keep, the '--keep-releases' argument passed via the CLI takes precedence over this value. If neither CLI nor configuration file value is specified, it defaults to '5'
  • keep_one_failed - A boolean specifying whether to keep all failed releases or just one (the latest failed release), the '--keep-one-failed' flag passed via the CLI takes precedence over this value. If neither CLI nor configuration file value is specified, it defaults to false (i.e. keep all failed releases).
  • linked_files:- Listed files that will be symlinked from the {deploy_path}/shared folder into each release directory during deployment. Can be used for configuration files that need to be persisted (e.g. dotenv files). NOTE: The directory structure must be similar in your release directories in case you need to link a file inside a nested directory (e.g. shared/foo/file.txt).
  • linked_dirs:- Listed directories that will be symlinked from the {deploy_path}/shared folder into each release directory during deployment. Can be used for data directories that need to be persisted (e.g. upload directories). NOTE: Do not add a slash / at the end of the directory (e.g. foo/) because we use parseRelFile to create the symlink.
  • run_locally:- Instructions to run locally on your machine in the form of shell commands. Example:
  - pwd
  - bash deploy.sh

Note how we are even able to execute a bash script named deploy.sh above. Be sure to use set -e in your bash script to avoid headaches. Hapistrano will stop the execution on non-zero exit codes. Without the usage of set -e, there is a possibility that your bash script may return a zero exit code even if your intermediate command resulted in an error.

After creating a configuration file as above, deploying is as simple as:

$ hap deploy

Rollback is also trivial:

$ hap rollback # to rollback to previous successful deploy
$ hap rollback -n 2 # go two deploys back in time, etc.
  • maintenance_directory:- The name of the directory on which the maintenance file will be placed. {deploy_path}/{maintenance_directory}. The default directory name is maintenance
  • maintenance_filename:- The name of the file that is going to be created in the maintenance_directory. It has to have the .html extension to be seen in the browser. {deploy_path}/{maintenance_directory}/{maintenance_filename}. The default filename is maintenance.html

Environment Variables

Configuration files are parsed using loadYamlSettings, therefore, variable substitution is supported. Considering the following configuration file:

revision: "_env:HAPISTRANO_REVISION:origin/master

The revision value could be overwritten as follows:

HAPISTRANO_REVISION=origin/feature_branch hap deploy

What to do when compiling on server is not viable

Sometimes the target machine (server) is not capable of compiling your application because e.g. it has not enough memory and GHC exhausts it all. You can copy pre-compiled files from local machine or CI server using copy_files and copy_dirs parameters:

  - src: '/home/stackbuilders/my-file.txt'
    dest: 'my-file.txt'
  - src: .stack-work
    dest: .stack-work

src maybe absolute or relative, it's path to file or directory on local machine, dest may only be relative (it's expanded relatively to cloned repo) and specifies where to put the files/directories on target machine. Directories and files with clashing names will be overwritten. Directories are copied recursively.

Deploying to multiple machines concurrently

Beginning with Hapistrano it's possible to deploy to several machines concurrently. The only things you need to do is to adjust your configuration file and use targets parameter instead of host and port, like this:

  - host: myserver-a.com
    port: 2222
  - host: myserver-b.com
# the rest is the same…

A few things to note here:

  • host item is required for every target, but port may be omitted and then it defaults to 22.

  • The deployment will run concurrently and finish when interactions with all targets have finished either successfully or not. If at least one interaction was unsuccessful, the hap tool will exit with non-zero exit code.

  • The log is printed in such a way that messages from several machines get intermixed, but it's guaranteed that they won't overlap (printing itself is sequential) and the headers will tell you exactly which machine was executing which command.

If you don't specify host and targets, hap will assume localhost as usually, which is mainly useful for testing.


Docker images hosted on Docker Hub are no longer up to date, newer versions are published to GitHub's Docker Registry.

GH Actions

Check the documentation here


If you want to use Nix for building Hapistrano, the required release.nix and default.nix are available.

For installing the hap binary in your local path:

nix-env -i hapistrano -f release.nix

For developing Hapistrano with Nix, you can create a development environment using:

nix-shell --attr env release.nix

For just building Hapistrano, you just:

nix-build release.nix

Enable/disable maintenance mode

Present a maintenance page to visitors. Disables your application's web interface by writing a {maintenance_filename} file to each web server. The servers must be configured to detect the presence of this file, and if it is present, always display it instead of performing the request.

The maintenance page will just say the site is down for maintenance, and will be back shortly.

To enable maintenance mode run:

hapistrano maintenance enable

Disabling maintenance mode will remove the file from the {maintenance_directory} it can be done with the following command:

hapistrano maintenance disable


  • Hapistrano is not supported on Windows. Please check: Issue #96.


MIT, see the LICENSE file.


Do you want to contribute to this project? Please take a look at our contributing guideline to know how you can help us build it.

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