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Concourse: the continuous thing-doer.

Discord Build Contributors Help Wanted

Concourse is an automation system written in Go. It is most commonly used for CI/CD, and is built to scale to any kind of automation pipeline, from simple to complex.

booklit pipeline

Concourse is very opinionated about a few things: idempotency, immutability, declarative config, stateless workers, and reproducible builds.

The road to Concourse v10

Concourse v10 is the code name for a set of features which, when used in combination, will have a massive impact on Concourse's capabilities as a generic continuous thing-doer. These features, and how they interact, are described in detail in the Core roadmap: towards v10 and Re-inventing resource types blog posts. (These posts are slightly out of date, but they get the idea across.)

Notably, v10 will make Concourse not suck for multi-branch and/or pull-request driven workflows - examples of spatial change, where the set of things to automate grows and shrinks over time.

Because v10 is really an alias for a ton of separate features, there's a lot to keep track of - here's an overview:

Feature RFC Status
set_pipeline step #31 ✔ v5.8.0 (experimental)
Var sources for creds #39 ✔ v5.8.0 (experimental), TODO: #5813
Archiving pipelines #33 ✔ v6.5.0
Instanced pipelines #34 ✔ v7.0.0 (experimental)
Static across step 🚧 #29 ✔ v6.5.0 (experimental)
Dynamic across step 🚧 #29 ✔ v7.4.0 (experimental, not released yet)
Projects 🚧 #32 🙏 RFC needs feedback!
load_var step #27 ✔ v6.0.0 (experimental)
get_var step #27 🚧 #5815 in progress!
Prototypes #37 ⚠ Pending first use of protocol (any of the below)
run step 🚧 #37 ⚠ Pending its own RFC, but feel free to experiment
Resource prototypes #38 🙏 #5870 looking for volunteers!
Var source prototypes 🚧 #6275 planned, may lead to RFC
Notifier prototypes 🚧 #28 ⚠ RFC not ready

The Concourse team at VMware will be working on these features, however in the interest of growing a healthy community of contributors we would really appreciate any volunteers. This roadmap is very easy to parallelize, as it is comprised of many orthogonal features, so the faster we can power through it, the faster we can all benefit. We want these for our own pipelines too! 😆

If you'd like to get involved, hop in Discord or leave a comment on any of the issues linked above so we can coordinate. We're more than happy to help figure things out or pick up any work that you don't feel comfortable doing (e.g. UI, unfamiliar parts, etc.).

Thanks to everyone who has contributed so far, whether in code or in the community, and thanks to everyone for their patience while we figure out how to support such common functionality the "Concoursey way!" 🙏


Concourse is distributed as a single concourse binary, available on the Releases page.

If you want to just kick the tires, jump ahead to the Quick Start.

In addition to the concourse binary, there are a few other supported formats. Consult their GitHub repos for more information:

Quick Start

$ wget https://concourse-ci.org/docker-compose.yml
$ docker-compose up
Creating docs_concourse-db_1 ... done
Creating docs_concourse_1    ... done

Concourse will be running at You can log in with the username/password as test/test.

⚠️ If you are using an M1 mac: M1 macs are incompatible with the containerd runtime. After downloading the docker-compose file, change CONCOURSE_WORKER_RUNTIME: "containerd" to CONCOURSE_WORKER_RUNTIME: "houdini". This feature is experimental

Next, install fly by downloading it from the web UI and target your local Concourse as the test user:

$ fly -t ci login -c -u test -p test
logging in to team 'main'

target saved

Configuring a Pipeline

There is no GUI for configuring Concourse. Instead, pipelines are configured as declarative YAML files:

- name: booklit
  type: git
  source: {uri: "https://github.com/vito/booklit"}

- name: unit
  - get: booklit
    trigger: true
  - task: test
    file: booklit/ci/test.yml

Most operations are done via the accompanying fly CLI. If you've got Concourse installed, try saving the above example as booklit.yml, target your Concourse instance, and then run:

fly -t ci set-pipeline -p booklit -c booklit.yml

These pipeline files are self-contained, maximizing portability from one Concourse instance to the next.

Learn More


Our user base is basically everyone that develops software (and wants it to work).

It's a lot of work, and we need your help! If you're interested, check out our contributing docs.