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Version: 5.x

Environment Variable File

Besides reading environment variables available in your terminal session, DevSpace also reads environment variables from the .env file inside your project. The syntax of the .env file is the same as for docker-compose:

  • Each line should have the format VAR_NAME=VAR_VALUE.
  • There is no special handling of quotation marks. This means that they are part of the VAR_VALUE.
  • Lines beginning with # are processed as comments and ignored.


  • Environment variables defined in your terminal session (including system variables) always take precendence over the variables in your .env file.
  • Variables defined in your .env file take precende over the default values defined for config variables (configured in the vars section of devspace.yaml).

Define Default Flags

A common use case for the .env file is to set default flags for the devspace commands such as devspace dev or devspace deploy. You can define the following environment variables to set default flags:

  • DEVSPACE_FLAGS for global flags that should be added to each commands (e.g. DEVSPACE_FLAGS=-s -p dev)
  • DEVSPACE_[COMMAND]_FLAGS to add default flags for single commands (e.g. DEVSPACE_DEV_FLAGS=-s --verbose-dependencies)
Overriding Default Flags

Specifying flags for a command will override the default flags, e.g. if DEVSPACE_FLAGS=-s -p dev is configured and you run devspace dev -p production, the following command would be executed: devspace dev -s -p production

Example: Setting Default Flags for DevSpace

# File: .env
DEVSPACE_DEV_FLAGS=-s --verbose-dependencies