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Version: 6.x (Latest)

Config Variables

DevSpace allows you to make your configuration dynamic by using variables.

While there is no need to explicitly define a config variable, it allows you to customize the behavior of DevSpace when working with the variable. If you do not explicitly define a variable, DevSpace will try to load it from the user's local environment variables.

Built-In Variables

DevSpace provides a set of built-in variables:

  • ${DEVSPACE_CONTEXT} contains the name of the current kube-context (e.g. minikube)
  • ${DEVSPACE_EXECUTABLE} contains the path to the devspace binary used
  • ${DEVSPACE_GIT_BRANCH} contains the name of the local git branch that the user is currently on
  • ${DEVSPACE_GIT_COMMIT} contains the hash of the latest git commit in the current repository
  • ${DEVSPACE_KUBECTL_EXECUTABLE} contains the path to the kubectl binary
  • ${DEVSPACE_NAME} contains the value of the name field of the current devspace.yaml file
  • ${DEVSPACE_NAMESPACE} contains the current namespace
  • ${DEVSPACE_PROFILE} contains the profile that is currently active in DevSpace (e.g. the string provided via -p / --profile in a command such as devspace dev -p my-profile)
  • ${DEVSPACE_RANDOM} contains a random 6 character long string
  • ${DEVSPACE_TIMESTAMP} contains the current UNIX timestamp
  • ${DEVSPACE_TMPDIR} contains a path to a temporary folder that DevSpace cleans up after the devspace command terminates
  • ${DEVSPACE_USER_HOME} contains the path to the current user's home directory
  • ${DEVSPACE_VERSION} contains the version of DevSpace that is currently running

Custom Variables

DevSpace lets you define custom varables inside devspace.yaml within the vars section.

Mix & Match Variable Types

You can define several types of variables in the same config file, e.g. one devspace.yaml can contain static variables, env variables and more.

Variable Type

By default, the type (string, int, bool) of variable will be determined by the type of its default value (if defined) or automatically detected if no default value is defined. To explicitly use the value of a variable as a string, use $!{VAR_NAME} instead of ${VAR_NAME}.

With Static Value

To add variables with static value, just provide the value for the respective variable:

MY_VAR: "some value"
ANOTHER_VAR: "some value"
On-Demand Overwrite

If you want to overwrite a static variable, you can use the --var MY_VAR=new-value flag, e.g. devspace dev --var MY_VAR=value.

From Env Vars

To load variables from the user's environment variables, you can just use them in the config as ${VAR_NAME} without the need to explicitly define them.

In order to specify a default value for an environment variable that is not defined, you can use:

source: env
default: my-default

From Command

You can load the values from commands from custom commands via config expressions or using the long form by specifying the command field:

VAR_FROM_COMMAND: $(git rev-parse HEAD)
command: git
args: ["rev-parse", "HEAD"]

From User Input (Question)

DevSpace can also ask the user to provide a value for a variable and you can provide a custom question and configure other input attributes for the question:

image: "mysql:${MYSQL_VERSION}"
question: Which mysql version do you want to use?
default: "5.7"

$DEVSPACE_ENV_FILE for .env File definition

DevSpace can also read environment variables from an environment file such as .env inside your project. Point DevSpace to your env file via the DEVSPACE_ENV_FILE environment variable. This can also be used inside a devspace.yaml under the vars section:


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 precedence over the variables in your .env file.
  • Variables defined in your .env file take precedence over the default values defined for config variables (configured in the vars section of devspace.yaml).


You can tell DevSpace to load a different config via the DEVSPACE_CONFIG environment variable. You can specify this before actually executing DevSpace via:

DEVSPACE_CONFIG=my-other-devspace.yaml devspace dev

$DEVSPACE_FLAGS For 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)
File: .env
DEVSPACE_FLAGS=-s -n default-namespace
DEVSPACE_DEV_FLAGS=-s --verbose-dependencies
Overwrite Default Flags

Specifying flags for a command will overwrite 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

You can also use these default flags without a specialized .env file in a regular devspace.yaml:

DEVSPACE_FLAGS: '-n my-default-namespace'

Useful Commands

devspace list vars

To get a list of all variables defined in the devspace.yaml, you can run this command:

devspace list vars

devspace reset vars

Once DevSpace asks you to provide a value for a variable, this value will be stored in the variables cache, so you will not asked about this variable again. To reset the variables cache, run:

devspace reset vars

DevSpace will fill the variables cache again, once you run the next build or deployment command.

devspace print

The following command prints the config after all variables have been replaced:

devspace print

You can optionally add the -p / --profiles flag to this command.

export VAR_NAME=value

The value for a config variable can also be set by defining an environment variable named [VAR_NAME]. Setting the value of a config variable with name ${IMAGE_NAME} would be possible by setting an environment value IMAGE_NAME.

$env:IMAGE_NAME = "some-value"

Config Reference

vars required <var_name>:object

Vars are config variables that can be used inside other config sections to replace certain values dynamically

<var_name> required string

Name is the name of the variable

Static Value

value required string|integer|boolean

Value is a shortcut for using source: none and default: my-value

Value From Input (Question)

question required string

Question can be used to define a custom question if the variable was not yet used

default required string|integer|boolean

Default is the default value the variable should have if not set by the user

options required string[]

Options are options that can be selected when the variable question is asked

password required boolean false

Password signals that this variable should not be visible if entered

validationPattern required string

ValidationPattern can be used to verify the user input

validationMessage required string

ValidationMessage can be used to tell the user the format of the variable value

noCache required boolean false

NoCache can be used to prompt the user on every run for this variable

Value From Command

command required string

Command is the command how to retrieve the variable. If args is omitted, command is parsed as a shell command.

args required string[]

Args are optional args that will be used for the command

commands required object[]

Commands are additional commands that can be used to run a different command on a different operating system.

os required string

OperatingSystem is optional and defines the operating system this command should be executed on

command required string

Command is the command to use to retrieve the value for this variable. If no args are specified the command is run within a pseudo shell.

args required string[]

Args are optional arguments for the command

alwaysResolve required boolean false

AlwaysResolve makes sure this variable will always be resolved and not only if it is used somewhere. Defaults to false.

source required string all all

Source defines where the variable should be taken from