chef create file in user's home directory


Solution 1

Thread is old, but I faced this problem a moment ago.

You can create attribute for user for example: default['mycookbook']['user']

Then in your recipe:

user = node['mycookbook']['user'] # user set in cookbook attrubute
# user = node['current_user'] # user running chef cookbook (on provisioned host)

home = node['etc']['passwd'][user]['dir'] # Chef DSL
# home = Dir.home(user) # It's Ruby

file "#{home}/somefile" do
  action :create_if_missing

Solution 2

This is because Chef recipes are run by the root user. How about this workaround

if File.exists? "/vagrant"
  user = "vagrant"
  user = "deployer"

file "/home/#{user}/foo" do
Jeff Storey
Author by

Jeff Storey

Updated on July 01, 2022


  • Jeff Storey
    Jeff Storey about 1 year

    I'm using chef to create a file resource

      file "somefile" do
         action :create_if_missing

    And I want to put this in the user's home directory. I am having two issues:

    1. The file is interpreted relative to /, so using ~/ ends up putting the file in /~/
    2. I'm launching this chef recipe through vagrant and these files are being created by root. So even if I could get ~/ to work, it would end up in root's home. I don't want to hard code to use the username vagrant since it won't always be that (we may run these with chef client as well), and node[:user] appears to be empty.

    Is there a way to create a file in the non-root user (in this case vagrant) home directory?