When you deploy or build your application a “build” artifact is created. This consists of the Docker images that make up your application plus metadata stored in your Rack’s database. Each build has a unique ID and is associated with one or more releases.

Builds can either be created:

  • Manually from the CLI. convox build will create your build artifact, whereas convox deploy will create the artifact and also then promote the subsequent release.
  • As part of a Convox workflow. Workflows can connect to your code repository and initiate builds and subsequent activities from code pushes or pull requests.
  • As part of an external CI process. Convox has a CircleCI Orb as well as a set of Github Actions for easy integration. Other CI services can also easily integrate with Convox by installing the Convox CLI in your CI environment, utilising deploy keys to keep your credentials secure, and running the build or deploy commands as appropriate in your CI workflow.

You can see a list of all the builds for your app by running convox builds from the CLI.

$ convox builds
BBLTITAIGHI  complete  ROCHMCOUESG  1 week ago   2m46s    build 7329df90c1 this is my commit message
BNNJBWFAWYJ  complete  RVUGSLANDXU  2 weeks ago  1m19s
BPNRIHAOQGM  failed                 2 weeks ago  11s
BRMUBCYGSWH  complete  RIHVPQXQWSR  3 weeks ago  1m8s

Creating a Build

You can simply build your application by running convox build from the top-level directory:

$ convox build

When you run this command the following steps are executed:

  • The Convox CLI builds a tarball from all the files in your project (except the ones specified in .dockerignore)
  • The CLI uploads the tarball to your Rack
  • The Rack extracts the tarball and reads convox.yml
  • Docker images are built or pulled as specified by convox.yml
  • The images are tagged and pushed into your Rack’s private Amazon ECR registry
  • Build metadata is saved to the Rack
  • A new release is created from the build and its metadata is saved too

The newly created release will not be promoted (made active) until you run convox releases promote <release ID>.

If you’d like to build your app and promote the release in a single step, you can run convox deploy rather than convox build.

Inspecting Builds

Run convox builds info <build ID> to view metadata for a particular build.

Run convox builds logs <build ID> to view the logs for a particular build.

Moving Builds

It’s possible to export a build from one app and import it to another app, even if the apps are on different Racks.

To move a build, first export it:

$ convox builds export <build ID> -a <appname> > build.tgz

You can then import the build into another app, even on a different Rack:

convox builds import -a <appname> < build.tgz

You can even pipe these commands together directly:

$ convox builds export <build ID> -a <app1> -r <rack1> | convox builds import -a <app2> -r <rack2>

Build arguments

Convox respects the ARG Dockerfile directive. For more information, see Dockerfile: ARG.