How do I preinstall certain tools onto a Hosted Agent?

By default, the Hosted Agent I'm working with is not supporting yarn command but only npm. Sad, right?

Of course, I could have a step in my build pipeline that downloads and installs yarn via scoop or choco[latey] on each run, but I really don't like the idea of the build increase time for something that should be available to me out of the box.

So how do I preinstall the tools I need upfront?

You do not necessarily need to use a private agent -- you can run your builds in a prebuilt container. This way you can have control over a hosted agent.

resources:
  containers:
  - container: tests
    image: my/container:tests

jobs:
  - job: run_tests
    container: tests
    pool:
      vmImage: 'Ubuntu-16.04'
    steps:
    # actual build
    ...

Microsoft-hosted agents for Azure Pipelines, Learn about using the Microsoft-hosted agents provided in Azure Pipelines. The Azure Pipelines agent pool offers several virtual machine The ability to pre -install custom software (other than through tool installer tasks in your pipeline). You can restructure your pipeline so that it can fit into this space. If you use supported version of the agents, you do not need to allow access to Azure Storage in the VM region, as can use the agent to redirect the communication to the Azure fabric controller for agent communications (HostGAPlugin feature through the privileged channel on private IP 168.63.129.16). If you are on a non-supported version of the

Of course, I could have a step in my build pipeline that downloads and installs yarn via scoop or choco[latey] on each run, but I really don't like the idea of the build increase time for something that should be available to me out of the box.

This is the correct approach to install something on a build agent. If the increased time is a problem for you you could consider installing an agent on a machine of yours. But even if you use a private agent the approach to have some the installation done as a step of a build would be the correct approach

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You don't. The hosted agent is fresh every time. There is nothing you can do to cache things on it.

If that's a requirement, you should install a private agent on a machine you control.

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Comments
  • Related to stackoverflow.com/questions/55271108/…
  • The tools installed on the hosted images is documented here. From what I can tell both the VS2017 and Ubuntu16.04 images both currently have Yarn 1.13.0.
  • This is a muchly much better solution, yes!
  • all the steps will run inside the container (I'm not sure about built-in steps, how that would work. I only use script steps). code will get mounted inside the container as well
  • "to have some the installation done as a step of a build would be the correct approach" is very arguable at best. If I want to have yarn command available I need to run scoop or choco command to install it. Neither of those tools is available either, so I need to install them too. I may or may not want to orchestrate my tools as a part of the pipeline -- that's totally a preference thing. And I personally would prefer the toolset to be described side by side with the pipeline definition but NOT INSIDE it.
  • Just a small detail: choco is available on the hosted agents.
  • @IgorSoloydenko hosted vs2017 has choco as well as yarn installed
  • @D.J. I'll try them out. Thanks!
  • Yeah, looks like I should indeed consider having a private agent instead...