What is Gruntwork Pipelines?
Gruntwork Pipelines is a framework for securely and responsibly rolling out infrastructure changes to your AWS environments using GitOps workflows. We often refer to Gruntwork Pipelines as simply "Pipelines."
Gruntwork Pipelines features first-class support for Terragrunt, runs on top of GitHub Actions, and uses a pull request-centric workflow. This means that all information about a proposed infrastructure change is added as comments to the applicable pull request, and that you apply the infrastructure change by taking action in the pull request.
Gruntwork Pipelines runs as a binary and series of steps in GitHub Actions, determining what actions need to be taken, in which environments, based on the infrastructure changes that occurred.
Gruntwork Pipelines uses specific terminology to describe code changes and operations that occur as a result of changes. This section will familiarize you with the terminology used throughout the Gruntwork Pipelines documentation.
When you edit any infrastructure-as-code that needs to be "applied" to your cloud account (e.g. AWS or GCP), you are making an infrastructure change. We sometime call these an "infra-change" for short.
Infra-changes can involve updates to Terraform/OpenTofu or Terragrunt code, or any other type of file that represents a desired state of your infrastructure and that needs to be somehow applied. A classic example is changing some variables on an instance of a Terraform module. Gruntwork Pipelines assumes that infra-changes are committed via git, usually by first opening a pull request. When you open a pull request, you are essentially "proposing" an infra-change.
Infrastructure change set
Sometimes users create a pull request that changes more than one file at a time. And sometimes a change to a single file affects how multiple other files will be "applied" to your live cloud account. For example, many users of Terragrunt use a pattern known as "envcommon" as a way to specify a default set of values for modules.
When more than one infra-change is made at a time, we call this an infrastructure-change set. We sometimes call this an "infra-change set" for short.
When a user proposes to make an infra-change by opening a pull request, we want to take some kind of "action" in response to that proposed-change. For example, we may want to run a
terragrunt plan and estimate the cost of applying this Terragrunt plan. We call these pipelines actions.
Gruntwork is responsible for adding support for a growing library of Pipelines Actions and we will continue to add more over time.