HashiCorp Terraform OverviewUNIXBusinessApplication

HashiCorp Terraform is the #8 ranked solution in top Configuration Management tools. PeerSpot users give HashiCorp Terraform an average rating of 8.8 out of 10. HashiCorp Terraform is most commonly compared to Red Hat Satellite: HashiCorp Terraform vs Red Hat Satellite. HashiCorp Terraform is popular among the large enterprise segment, accounting for 64% of users researching this solution on PeerSpot. The top industry researching this solution are professionals from a computer software company, accounting for 20% of all views.
Buyer's Guide

Download the Configuration Management Buyer's Guide including reviews and more. Updated: November 2022

What is HashiCorp Terraform?

HashiCorp was founded by Mitchell Hashimoto and Armon Dadgar in 2012 with the goal of revolutionizing datacenter management: application development, delivery, and maintenance.
The datacenter of today is very different than the datacenter of yesterday, and we think the datacenter of tomorrow is just around the corner. We're writing software to take you all the way from yesterday to today, and then safely to tomorrow and beyond.
Physical, virtual, containers. Private cloud, public cloud, hybrid cloud. IaaS, PaaS, SaaS. Windows, Linux, Mac. These are just some of the choices faced when architecting a datacenter of today. And the choice is not one or the other; instead, it is often a combination of many of these.
HashiCorp builds tools to ease these decisions by presenting solutions that span the gaps. Our tools manage both physical machines and virtual machines, Windows, and Linux, SaaS and IaaS, etc. And we're committed to supporting next-generation technologies, as well.
HashiCorp was founded and continues to be run by the primary authors of all our core technologies powering thousands of companies worldwide. We speak at conferences and write books related to application and infrastructure management.
All our foundational technologies are open source and developed openly, and have been since 2010.
The Tao of HashiCorp is the foundation that guides our vision, roadmap, and product design. As you evaluate using or contributing to HashiCorp's products, it may be valuable to understand the motivations and intentions for our work. Learn more about the Tao of HashiCorp here: https://www.hashicorp.com/tao-of-hashicorp

HashiCorp Terraform was previously known as Terraform.

HashiCorp Terraform Pricing Advice

What users are saying about HashiCorp Terraform pricing:
  • "They have given it to us at a monthly cost, but it is on a yearly basis."
  • "The setup for Terraform is quite easy and currently, we are using their community version along with Jenkins."
  • "HashiCorp Terraform is a free solution."
  • HashiCorp Terraform Reviews

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    Senior Build And Release Engineer at a tech services company with 1,001-5,000 employees
    Real User
    Top 5Leaderboard
    Simple to install, and understands the order in which specific infrastructure must be implemented
    Pros and Cons
    • "The concept of infrastructure as code is quite intriguing. We have an infrastructure in our code and a state file where we can verify whether something is changed when it was changed, and who changed it. When we use Terraform, these kinds of things fascinate us."
    • "I would want to see more programmatic capabilities implemented, such as if, else, and simple to manage things in terms of how I can use some programming functions to assist us to achieve more. I would like to have programming language-relevant features, to have programming language be the primary way."

    What is our primary use case?

    We use HashiCorp Terraform to set up AWS infrastructure, and sometimes Cloudflare.

    It is not exactly a tool for configuration, it is for setting up the development of the infrastructure.

    What is most valuable?

    The concept of infrastructure as code is quite intriguing.

    We have an infrastructure in our code and a state file where we can verify whether something is changed when it was changed, and who changed it. When we use Terraform, these kinds of things fascinate us.

    What needs improvement?

    I often wonder why they don't create a UI. That is something I always consider. I realize CLI is useful, but I prefer to do things in this manner. Why are we opting for CLI? I want to make things easy. I understand that most don't agree with me, but that is what I would prefer.

    I don't think that they will agree on this. I am looking for a drag-and-drop or anything that can just generate modules behind the scenes and allow people to quickly accomplish things. 

    I am aware that it does not serve the purpose of Terraform, and that too, is an issue. 

    We have a purpose for infrastructure as code, and when the code is gone, you are working on UI. Terraform is not a programming language, most things are straightforward; we cannot do. Terraform lacks these features.

    I would say the programming language, perhaps using more of a programming language rather than this declarative language, is something I'd want to explore in the future.

    I would want to see more programmatic capabilities implemented, such as if, else, and simple to manage things in terms of how I can use some programming functions to assist us to achieve more.

    I would like to have programming language-relevant features, to have programming language be the primary way.

    For how long have I used the solution?

    I have been using HashiCorp Terraform for three years.

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    What do I think about the stability of the solution?

    I don't think HashiCorp Terraform is particularly stable. I would rate it a three and a half out of five. However, we are always working on it and making improvements. They had a lot of problems in the past, but today most things are done correctly.

    While there are new versions coming in, there are always issues that arise.

    It is not about stability, but about version upgrades. They have newer versions and occasionally backward compatibility. It happened a long time ago but is not an issue anymore. I had a bad experience at the beginning, which is why I remember it.

    Someone who is just starting, in my opinion, will encounter difficulties. That is why I believe the language should be changed to a programmed language that everyone can comprehend.

    The previous version had several difficulties with the state file, including some backward compatibility and parameter changes, but they are now more stable.

    What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

    I have not encountered any issues with HashiCorp Terraform's scalability.

    We are using Terraform to build up infrastructure in order to document our infrastructure more declaratively. That is what Terraform excels at. I never had any problems with scalability, either in terms of improvement or anything else. 

    There are some glitches with Terraform servers. When we are initializing, we occasionally encounter an issue; in three years, this has happened to me twice.

    We have 20 people in our organization who use this solution, if we add developers we have approximately 60 people.

    Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

    From inside the cloud services, I am working on EKS Kubernetes, ECS Elastic Containerized Services, and Elasticsearch, which is now known as OpenSearch. I am working on EKS, Kubernetes, ECS, Elastic Containerized Services, as well as Elastic Search, which is now known as Open Search, and Redis ElastiCache, which is a component of MSK Kafka.

    These are the tools I am using. Jenkins is used for the CI process, as well as GitHub Action is used for the CI process. 

    As previously mentioned for alerts, we use Opsgenie and Grafana for the dashboards and premises. 

    Many third-party services, such as NGINX, are used in Kubernetes. We use Cube Metrics for these kinds of activities, such as metrics scraping.

    I have worked with Ansible as well, however, if you asked me to compare the two, I would say Terraform is superior to Ansible. I am not going to get into specifics. 

    Terraform, is self-explanatory. It knows how to run, if we want to build some infrastructure, it understands where to start, how to start, what the dependencies are, and so on. 

    We must occasionally inform Terraform of some dependencies, which is fine. Terraform, on the other hand, already understands the sequence in which it must execute certain infrastructure to build up. Those are the advantages over Ansible.

    The disadvantage of Terraform is that, once again, we must use functions to build up variables or something similar, but Terraform's dry notion is not very good.

    When I say dry, I mean that you should not repeat the bad code. Other references are being used to handle this. That is something I would want to suggest.

    How was the initial setup?

    The initial setup is simple. It is not a difficult process to set up.

    I would rate the initial setup a four out of five. it is easy.

    When a new version is released, it is backward compatible. And I would say that is good in terms of Terraform maintainability. Normally, we don't have to make many changes, and backward compatibility is beneficial.

    In terms of maintenance, it does not require a lot of attention.

    What other advice do I have?

    It's good, I would rate HashiCorp Terraform an eight out of ten.

    Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
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    PeerSpot user
    Rakib Mahmood - PeerSpot reviewer
    Chief Technology and Strategy Officer at The White House
    Real User
    Top 10
    Provides automation which is a huge cost saver
    Pros and Cons
    • "Provides automation which has increased our efficiency."
    • "Terraform lacks in running script."

    What is our primary use case?

    A primary use case of Terraform is for deploying a VM on a cloud using Terraform script. If I then want to deploy a third-party toolset, a solution such as Aviatrix can create an overlay on top of each of the cloud providers and you can connect the clouds together. I'm a solutions architect and we are customers of HashiCorp. 

    How has it helped my organization?

    The solution has made a huge difference to us because the automation it provides has given us improved cost efficiency, security and saved many man-hours. It's created once and then that's pretty much it. When you next want to deploy something, you run it and it deploys. 

    What is most valuable?

    Terraform removes the manual process; you run it for a specific purpose, destroy it when you're done, and it removes all the associated components. The other good feature is that Terraform is idempotent; if something is already out there, it's not going to try to duplicate another installation of that environment.

    One of the other major features of terraform is in its ability to act as a Disaster Recovery tool. Since terraform is an Infrastructure-As-A-Service tool, it can be used as part of the rest of the DR toolset to restore affected infrastructure to its original state without any variation. 

    The Terraform manifests can be stored in a version control repository separate from the application code base and can be a single source of truth for an organization's infrastructure. The automation and the efficiency that Terraform brings to the SDLC lifecycle adds to the overall integrity of the infrastructure and provides a value added to the DevSecOps workflow.   

    What needs improvement?

    I've noticed that although Terraform is very good at deploying, it lacks in running script. For example, if you wanted to run multiple deployments such as a VM, and then install different softwares and create a full-blown infrastructure within that virtual machine, Terraform would probably lack certain features. I don't think it's very robust in running scripts or going from one sequence to another. You're likely to end up running a huge Terraform code base, where you'd probably get lost in terms of knowing where things are coming from and where they're going. 

    For how long have I used the solution?

    I've been using this solution for two years. 

    What do I think about the stability of the solution?

    The solution is stable without too many bugs. If we're deploying on top of a current deployment, there can be some issues and that could be improved. If you need a fully idempotent solution, you deploy your infrastructure without touching any existing infrastructure. Unfortunately, Terraform fails when it finds an existing infrastructure and things become complicated. In terms of stability, this is probably one of the biggest deficiencies of Terraform. 

    How are customer service and support?

    HashiCorp provides very good documentation so we haven't needed to contact technical support. They also have GitHub repository against each of those tutorials, so we can actually clone and tweak those according to our needs. There's also a large open-source community out there and a lot of blogs that complement the documentation. 

    How was the initial setup?

    Deployment is just about downloading the plug-in. To run it requires each of the cloud environments on the CLI tool downloaded so that they both work together with all the credentials in place so that it can connect to each of the clouds. We are a small organization and still experimenting with Terraform so we only have one dedicated person helping out with the solution. That said, all of the team members are more or less skilled with Terraform.

    What was our ROI?

    We're definitely seeing cost savings from a man-hour point of view but I can't quantify it. 

    What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

    We are using the free version of Terraform. Terraform Cloud has some kind of pricing and enterprise-level model which we haven't moved to yet. I think  Terraform has a pretty reasonable pricing structure. It allows the open-source community to use it as they please, so I'm pretty happy about it.

    Which other solutions did I evaluate?

    AWS has a code solution called CloudFormation which I think is a little slower than Terraform although I think CloudFormation is probably a bit more secure and foolproof.

    What other advice do I have?

    This is a solid product and one of the leaders in this space. Terraform is used across the board as an Infrastructure-as-Code solution. 

    There could be some improvements so I rate this solution eight out of 10. 

    Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

    Public Cloud
    Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
    PeerSpot user
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    November 2022
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    ArpanBalpande - PeerSpot reviewer
    Senior Information Technology System Analyst at YAUSH Technologies
    Real User
    Top 5
    Easy to deploy, stable, and scalable with good support and many useful features
    Pros and Cons
    • "The state backend, automated describe functionality, modular structures, and variablization using templates are most valuable."
    • "The state locking functionality can be improved. In certain situations, we have to force-unlock the state, which sometimes does not work. When that happens, we have to manually go to the state backend and remove that particular state, which is kind of a cumbersome process. It should also have more functions, more expressions, and support for more products."

    What is our primary use case?

    We are using it for infrastructure as code automation. We are running its latest version.

    What is most valuable?

    The state backend, automated describe functionality, modular structures, and variablization using templates are most valuable.

    What needs improvement?

    The state locking functionality can be improved. In certain situations, we have to force-unlock the state, which sometimes does not work. When that happens, we have to manually go to the state backend and remove that particular state, which is kind of a cumbersome process.

    It should also have more functions, more expressions, and support for more products.

    For how long have I used the solution?

    I have been using this solution for almost four years.

    What do I think about the stability of the solution?

    It has good stability.

    What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

    It is good in terms of scalability. We have almost 35 to 40 users. We definitely plan to increase its usage.

    How are customer service and technical support?

    We did interact with their technical support. It was easy to schedule a call with them. It was also easy to contact their sales team and the support team. It was definitely a good experience.

    Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

    We had AWS CloudFormation as well as Azure ARM templates.

    How was the initial setup?

    Its initial setup is quite good and simple. It didn't take more than one and a half hours.

    What about the implementation team?

    I did it myself. We have four people for its maintenance. We have one admin and three deployers.

    What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

    They have given it to us at a monthly cost, but it is on a yearly basis.

    What other advice do I have?

    I would advise others to understand the state backend and how Terraform works. They should also go through functions as well as expressions in the Terraform official documentation.

    I would rate HashiCorp Terraform an eight out of ten.

    Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

    Public Cloud

    If public cloud, private cloud, or hybrid cloud, which cloud provider do you use?

    Amazon Web Services (AWS)
    Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
    PeerSpot user
    PeerSpot user
    Senior DevOps/Build Engineer at a tech services company with 10,001+ employees
    MSP
    Top 5
    A stable and scalable solution which allows one to easily work faster and set up new environments
    Pros and Cons
    • "The solution allows us to work faster with ease and to set up new environments and workspaces."
    • "I would like to see a short-term option for a short-term plan."

    What is our primary use case?

    I use the latest version. 

    What is most valuable?

    The solution allows us to work faster with ease and to set up new environments and workspaces. 

    What needs improvement?

    I would like to see a short-term option for a short-term plan. The last few versions contain plans with very long output which have since been altered. When one receives a plan involving many changes, it will not be applied. Even should nothing need apply, there is a very long history which is not really useful, as many find its application confusing. 

    For how long have I used the solution?

    I have been using HashiCorp Terraform for around five years. 

    What do I think about the stability of the solution?

    The solution is pretty stable. I have no issues in this regard. 

    What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

    The solution is pretty scalable. 

    How are customer service and support?

    As the solution is open source, support is community based. 

    How was the initial setup?

    There is a need for configuration management, for setting up the infrastructure from scratch. 

    The set up process is pretty straightforward. 

    The duration of the deployment varies with the project. Our company is involved in many projects. 

    What about the implementation team?

    There are between one and five people who are responsible for maintaining the solution. 

    Which other solutions did I evaluate?

    I went with HashiCorp Terraform over that of CloudFormation, as the latter is complicated and hard to understand. HashiCorp Terraform was easier to learn across platforms, regions and multi-clouds. 

    What other advice do I have?

    I use the latest version. It is important to try to not repeat oneself and to utilize the module provided by HashiCorp and others for training purposes. 

    Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

    Public Cloud

    If public cloud, private cloud, or hybrid cloud, which cloud provider do you use?

    Amazon Web Services (AWS)
    Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
    PeerSpot user
    KulbhushanMayer - PeerSpot reviewer
    Co Founder and Technical Architect at Think NYX Technologies LLP
    Reseller
    Top 5Leaderboard
    Supports many different platforms and has helped us to standardize our infrastructure setup
    Pros and Cons
    • "The most valuable feature is the support for different platforms like cloud, datacenters, VCS, databases, various storage types, and Kubernetes."
    • "They have added a feature that helps us to import existing resources to our workspace, but if they can help us to create the code for the import, as well, then it would be a great addition."

    What is our primary use case?

    We are using Terraform to manage our multi-cloud requirement for different demos and test environments. It helps us set up the entire environment in a few mins with the exact configuration in AWSAzure, or GCP, along with other setups like a database, Kubernetes, etc.

    How has it helped my organization?

    Terraform helped us to standardized our infrastructure setup and to reduce errors occurring due to manual execution. It has made our environment more efficient.

    What is most valuable?

    The most valuable feature is the support for different platforms like cloud, datacenters, VCS, databases, various storage types, and Kubernetes.

    What needs improvement?

    They have added a feature that helps us to import existing resources to our workspace, but if they can help us to create the code for the import, as well, then it would be a great addition.

    For how long have I used the solution?

    We have been using HashiCorp Terraform for more than two years.

    What do I think about the stability of the solution?

    We should always check the changes or impact of new release which is common for all tools so for me its good in terms of stability.

    What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

    The scalability is good.

    Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

    We have used platform CLIs and other customized scripting solutions that need lots of maintenance and care.

    How was the initial setup?

    The initial setup is quite easy and straightforward.

    What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

    The setup for Terraform is quite easy and currently, we are using their community version along with Jenkins.

    Which other solutions did I evaluate?

    We have evaluated other options like CloudFormation and Cloud Deployment Manager, but those were platform-dependent tools, so not suited for our multi-cloud model.

    Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

    Hybrid Cloud
    Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
    PeerSpot user
    Maxim-Chepukov - PeerSpot reviewer
    DevOps Engineer at IOTANS
    Real User
    Top 5
    Useful automation, advantageous managerial capabilities, and reliable

    What is our primary use case?

    HashiCorp Terraform is a binary executable file, that you can download to your PC and manage any cloud solution in the world, such as Google Cloud Platform, Amazon AWS, OpenStack, CloudStack, or VMware. When you use DevOps in your company, it's a useful tool for it.

    What is most valuable?

    The most valuable features of HashiCorp Terraform are automation and management capabilities.

    What needs improvement?

    HashiCorp Terraform could improve the integration with the VCloud Director. When we manage the VCloud Director we end up wasting our time when creating virtual machines. HashiCorp Terraform knows about these issues and I think there might be a workaround but they should incorporate the fix in an upcoming release.

    For how long have I used the solution?

    I have been using HashiCorp Terraform for approximately one year.

    What do I think about the stability of the solution?

    HashiCorp Terraform is a stable solution. We did not have any problems.

    What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

    The scalability of HashiCorp Terraform is good.

    How are customer service and support?

    I have not used the technical support from HashiCorp Terraform.

    How was the initial setup?

    HashiCorp Terraform tool is pre-installed on our DevOps engineer's laptops, and in our GitLab Servers. We assign it to a selection of virtual machines. We just run it, and then we perform some functions, such as creating systems or modifying CPUs or RAM.

    What about the implementation team?

    We did the implementation of HashiCorp Terraform in-house. We have a good team of three programmers and DevOps engineers with experience.

    We used one engineer for the implementation of HashiCorp Terraform. 

    What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

    HashiCorp Terraform is a free solution.

    What other advice do I have?

    I rate HashiCorp Terraform a nine out of ten.

    Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

    On-premises
    Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
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    PeerSpot user
    Executive Vice PresidentExecutive at a government with 10,001+ employees
    Real User
    Top 20
    It integrates well with other products and is simple to install and maintain
    Pros and Cons
    • "The most valuable aspect of this solution is the coding of our infrastructure. You can code it once and run it multiple times."
    • "There is always room for improvement somewhere. I don't know everything about the product."

    What is our primary use case?

    We use HashiCorp Terraform to deploy applications and infrastructures.

    What is most valuable?

    The most valuable aspect of this solution is the coding of our infrastructure. You can code it once and run it multiple times.

    It works great for us.

    We have had no issues integrating with other products.

    It does everything we need it to do.

    What needs improvement?

    There is always room for improvement somewhere. I don't know everything about the product.

    I read about the improvements and the different things that are coming out all of the time. They continue to maintain it.

    For how long have I used the solution?

    I have been working with HashiCorp Terraform for two years.

    What do I think about the stability of the solution?

    HashiCorp Terraform is very stable. Once you have coded it, it is good.

    What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

    The HashiCorp Terraform solution is scalable.

    How are customer service and support?

    I have not contacted technical support. I have not needed it.

    How was the initial setup?

    The initial setup was straightforward.

    It is very simple to maintain.

    What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

    I am not aware of the cost, my customer deals with that.

    What other advice do I have?

    I would suggest going for it. I have not had any issue with it yet.

    I would rate HashiCorp Terraform a nine out of ten.

    Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
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    PeerSpot user
    Mykola Pelyp - PeerSpot reviewer
    Senior Azure DevOps Engineer at SoftServe Ltd.
    MSP
    Top 20
    Super robust solution with the ability to create loops; great UI and integrates well

    What is our primary use case?

    We use this solution to manage our resources in a fully automatic way. I'm a senior Azure DevOps engineer and we are users of Terraform. 

    What is most valuable?

    I like the Centrix feature which gives us the ability to create loops. I also like that modules can be reused extremely easily. This is a super robust solution and I would recommend it to anyone. It has a great user interface and integrates well.

    What needs improvement?

    It would be helpful for us if the open source tech support was a little better. 

    For how long have I used the solution?

    I've been using this solution for four years. 

    What do I think about the stability of the solution?

    The solution is stable.

    What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

    The solution is highly scalable.

    How are customer service and support?

    We use the free open-source version of Terraform so it can take time to resolve problems. The issues are generally minor, so it's not a big deal. 

    How would you rate customer service and support?

    Neutral

    How was the initial setup?

    The deployment can take anywhere from 10 minutes to two hours. 

    What other advice do I have?

    I rate this solution ten out of ten. 

    Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

    Public Cloud
    Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
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