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I've been trying to figure out a way to test if a resource is already defined in another file, and if not create it? A quick example:

  if File[$local_container] {
    alert("Testing - It existed $local_container")
  } else {
    file{ "$local_container":
      ensure => directory,

However - File[$local_container] always seems to evaluate to true. Is there a way to do this?

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2 Answers 2

up vote 7 down vote accepted

Do you mean "test if a resource is already defined"? If you define a resource (ie, file {}, etc) Puppet will create what you're describing if doesn't already exist (assuming you pass ensure => present, of course).

To check if a resource is already defined in the catalog or not:

mark-draytons-macbook:~ mark$ cat test.pp 
file { "/tmp/foo": ensure => present }

if defined(File["/tmp/foo"]) {
  alert("/tmp/foo is defined")
} else {
  alert("/tmp/foo is not defined")

if defined(File["/tmp/bar"]) {
  alert("/tmp/bar is defined")
} else {
  alert("/tmp/bar is not defined")

mark-draytons-macbook:~ mark$ puppet test.pp 
alert: Scope(Class[main]): /tmp/foo is defined
alert: Scope(Class[main]): /tmp/bar is not defined
notice: //File[/tmp/foo]/ensure: created

Note: defined() is dependent on parse order.

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Wow - That simple, thanks! –  gnarf Sep 9 '09 at 21:53
That "depends on parse order" part makes it almost useless. –  joerx Apr 1 at 2:47


file{ "$local_container":
  ensure => directory,
  replace => false,
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Nope, if the "$local_container" file was already defined somewhere else (like say by something that wanted to control the permissions/owner) you can't define the same resource twice. –  gnarf Jun 3 at 18:37

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