»Handling Configuration

Video tutorial below:

A component in Waypoint is a Struct that implements one or more Waypoint interfaces. If you take a look at the file builder/builder.go you will see that the Build struct is defined and that it has a single field config which is of type BuildConfig.

type Builder struct {
  config BuildConfig

Since the plugin will be building a Go application, at a bare minimum, it will need to know the name of the binary which will be created and the source code's location. Waypoint allows you to define a custom configuration that can be passed to your components. The following example shows the configuration for a Waypoint application that uses your new plugin.

The use stanza is where the configuration is defined for the build component; this contains two parameters output_name and source.

project = "guides"

app "example" {

  build {
    use "gobuilder" {
      output_name = "server"
      source = "./"


Configuration files are defined as HCL and parsed by the Waypoint application. It converts the HCL configuration and passes it to your plugin. So that Waypoint knows how the configuration parameters map to your internal structures. You define a Struct, adding tags for each of the fields which you would like to serialize from the config.

Let's modify the struct BuildConfig, which the plugin uses to store the config. In the templated code, adding the fields, we would like serialized from the configuration.

Since the configuration fields are optional, you can use the HCL annotation optional to tell the HCL parser to skip validation for the presence of this field.

Modify the BuildConfig struct in the builder/builder.go file so that it looks like the following example:

type BuildConfig struct {
  OutputName string `hcl:"output_name,optional"`
  Source     string `hcl:"source,optional"`

When Waypoint parses the configuration step for the application, it looks to see if your component has implemented the Configurable interface and, if so, calls the Config method from which a reference to your config struct is returned. Waypoint uses the reference and attempts to serialize the application configuration to it.

If you look at the builder.go file, you will see that the template has already implemented this.

func (b *Builder) Config() (interface{}, error) {
  return &b.config, nil

Let's see how you can validate that the configuration is correct before using it in the build process.

»Validating Configuration

To validate configuration, Waypoint components can use the ConfigurableNotify interface. ConfigurableNotify defines the method ConfigSet called after Waypoint has read the HCL config file and serialized it to the struct you returned from Config.

type ConfigurableNotify interface {

  // ConfigSet is called with the value of the configuration after
  // decoding is complete successfully.
  ConfigSet(interface{}) error

ConfigSet is always called before the Component specific interface methods like BuildFunc are called. It allows you to validate any provided configuration, and if necessary, return an error message to the user.

The template has already implemented the ConfigSet method on the Builder for you; however, let's modify it to validate the Source folder exists.

Modify the ConfigSet function in the builder.go folder to look like the following example. The new implementation uses os.Stat to check that the directory defined in the config exists. If it does not, then you return an error that Waypoint will present to the user.

func (b *Builder) ConfigSet(config interface{}) error {
  c, ok := config.(*BuildConfig)
  if !ok {
    return fmt.Errorf("Expected type BuildConfig")

  // validate the config
  _, err := os.Stat(c.Source)
  if err != nil {
    return fmt.Errorf("Source folder does not exist")

  // config validated ok
  return nil

Next - Implementing the Builder interface