Announcing rdo

At work I’ve been using Vagrant for development. The thing that bothers me most about using Vagrant or any remote development machine is the disconnect it presents with local tools. You are forced to either login into the machine and run command or jump through hoops to run the commands from the local machine, most often times losing the file system context that make the local tools possible.

Local Tools

What I mean by local tools are things like IDEs or build code that performs tasks on your repository. IDEs assume you are developing locally and expect a local executable for certain tasks in order to work. Build code can be platform specific, which is likely why you are using Vagrant in the first place.

My answer to this is rdo.

Why rdo

I have a similar project called xe that you can configure to sort out your path when in a specific project. For example, if I have a virtualenv venv, in my cloned repo, I can use xe python to run the correct python without having to activate the virtualenv or manually include the path to the python executable.

rdo works in a similar way, the difference being that instead of adjust the path, it configures the command to run on a remote machine, such as a Vagrant VM.

Using rdo

For example, lets assume you have a Makefile in your project repo. You’ve written a bootstrap task that will download any system dependencies for your app.

     sudo apt-get install -y python-pip python-lxml

Obviously if you are on OS X or RHEL, you don’t use apt for package management, and therefore use a Vagrant VM. Rather than having to ssh into the VM, you can use rdo.

The first step is to create a config file in your repo.

driver = vagrant
directory = /vagrant

That assumes you’re Vagrantfile is mounting your repo at /vagrant. You can change it as needed.

From there you can use rdo to run commands.

$ rdo make bootstrap

That will compose a command to connect to the vagrant VM, cd to the correct directory and run your command.


I hope you give it a try and report back any issues. At the moment it extremely basic in that it doesn’t do anything terribly smart as far as escaping goes. I hope to remedy that as well as support generic ssh connections as well.