Multipass cloud-init

Multipass is pretty useful but what a pain this was to figure out, due to Ubuntu’s Node.js package not working with AWS-CDK.

Multipass lets you manage VM in Ubuntu and can take cloud-init scripts as a parameter. I wanted an Ubuntu LTS instance with AWS CDK, which needs Node.js and python3-venv.

  - python3-venv
  - unzip

package_update: true

package_upgrade: true

  - path: "/etc/environment"
    append: true
    content: |
      export PATH=\

  - wget https://nodejs.org/dist/v20.11.1/node-v20.11.1-linux-x64.tar.xz 
  - tar xvf node-v20.11.1-linux-x64.tar.xz -C /opt
  - export PATH=/opt/node-v20.11.1-linux-x64/bin:$PATH
  - npm install -g npm@latest
  - npm install -g aws-cdk
  - git config --system user.name "Dougie Richardson"
  - git config --system user.email "xx@xxxxxxxxx.com"
  - git config --system init.defaultBranch main
  - wget https://awscli.amazonaws.com/awscli-exe-linux-x86_64.zip
  - unzip awscli-exe-linux-x86_64.zip
  - ./aws/install

Save that as cdk.yaml and spin up an new instance:

multipass launch --name cdk --cloud-init cdk.yaml

There’s a couple useful things to note if you’re checking this out:

  • Inside the VM there’s a useful log to assist debugging /var/log/cloud-init-output.log.
  • While YAML has lots of ways to split text over multiple lines, when you don’t want space use a backslash.

Shell into the new VM with multipass shell cdk, then we can configure programmatic access and bootstrap CDK.

aws sso configure
aws sso login --profile profile_name
aws sts get-caller-identity --profile profile_name
aws configure get region --profile profile_name

The last two commands give the account and region to bootstrap:

cdk bootstrap aws://account_number/region --profile profile_name


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