Build a Vagrant box with Bartender

Ubuntu Bartender (Bartender) is a script based on Ubuntu Old Fashioned that lets you build Ubuntu cloud images locally using livecd-rootfs.


The use of Bartender to build custom Vagrant images is intended for development use only. It is not for building production images. Support of the Bartender tool is only for bugs within the tool itself, not community help with building images.

Basic setup

To run Bartender, you will need a copy of the Ubuntu Old Fashioned repository, git (version control), petname (for project naming), and availability of one of the build providers (Google Cloud Engine, AWS EC2, Microsoft Azure, or Multipass). In a suitable directory, run:

sudo apt install petname git
snap install multipass
git clone
cd ubuntu-old-fashioned/scripts/ubuntu-bartender/

Building the box

Bartender takes in a number of configuration options. There following are of concern for building the Vagrant box:

  • livecd-rootfs-branch
    • This needs to match the series name described below

  • build-provider
    • For local builds, use multipass

  • series
    • The series for the image

    • This must always be specified for Bartender to run

  • image-target
    • Refers to the series hook to call in livecd-rootfs

    • Set this as vagrant

  • project
    • This should always be set to ubuntu-cpc

To build a Vagrant box for a given Ubuntu series name, run the following from the ubuntu-bartender directory. Replace all the $VARIABLES$:

./ubuntu-bartender \
   --livecd-rootfs-branch ubuntu/$UBUNTU_NAME$ \
   --build-provider $PROVIDER_OF_CHOICE$ \
   -- \
   --series $UBUNTU_NAME$ \
   --image-target vagrant \
   --project ubuntu-cpc

Bartender will get to work building the box. Once it has set up the VM and began building, Bartender will display the name of the project and where it is storing the log files. A quick way to view the detailed build progress is to open another terminal window and run:

tail -f /path/to/ubuntu-bartender/project_name.log

If Bartender is unsuccessful in building, consult the build log to determine the cause of the error. If Bartender is successful in building, a tarball containing the build contents will be created with the format project_name.tar.gz.

Running the box

Extract the contents of the build tarball and cd to the location of the .box file. Assuming the default name of, run:

vagrant box add --name noble_bartender
vagrant init noble_bartender
vagrant up
vagrant ssh

See Run a Vagrant box for more details.