Code and Data Directory (codedir)

This version of Puppet is not included in Puppet Enterprise. The latest version of PE includes Puppet 4.10. A newer version is available; see the version menu above for details.

Puppet’s codedir is the main directory for Puppet code and data. It contains environments (which contain your manifests and modules), a global modules directory for all environments, and your Hiera data.


Puppet’s codedir can be found at one of the following locations:

  • *nix Systems: /etc/puppetlabs/code
  • Windows: C:\ProgramData\PuppetLabs\code
  • non-root users: ~/.puppetlabs/etc/code

When Puppet is running as either root, a Windows user with administrator privileges, or the puppet user, it will use a system-wide codedir. When running as a non-root user, it will use a codedir in that user’s home directory.

The system codedir is what you usually want to use, since you will usually run Puppet’s commands and services as root or puppet. (Note that admin commands like puppet module must be run with sudo to use the same codedir as Puppet agent or Puppet master.)

Note: When Puppet master is running as a Rack application, the file must explicitly set --codedir to the system codedir. The example file provided with the Puppet source does this.


Puppet’s codedir can be specified on the command line with the --codedir option, but it can’t be set via puppet.conf. (This is because it needs the codedir to even find the config file.) If --codedir isn’t specified when a Puppet application is started, it will always use the default codedir location.

Note about Windows 2003

The location of the system codedir is based on the COMMON_APPDATA folder, whose location changed to a simpler value in Windows 7 and 2008. So if you’re using Windows 2003 the codedir will actually be located at %ALLUSERSPROFILE%\Application Data\PuppetLabs\code (defaults to C:\Documents and Settings\All Users\Application Data\PuppetLabs\code).

Interpolation of $codedir

Since the value of the codedir is discovered before other settings, you can safely reference it (with the $codedir variable) in the value of any other setting in puppet.conf:

  environmentpath = $codedir/override_environments:$codedir/environments

If you need to set nonstandard values for some settings, this allows you to avoid absolute paths and keep your Puppet-related files together.


Puppet’s codedir contains environments, modules, and Hiera data. Its contents are used by Puppet master and Puppet apply, but not by Puppet agent.

Almost everything in the codedir has its own page of documentation.

Code and Data Directories

  • environments — contains alternate versions of the modules and manifests directories, to allow code changes to be tested on smaller sets of nodes before entering production.
  • modules — the main directory for Puppet’s modules.

Config Files

  • hiera.yaml — configuration for the Hiera data lookup system.

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