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A command-line tool that has been developed specifically in the context of the Co-op Cloud project for the purpose of making day-to-day operations for operators and maintainers as convenient as possible. It is libre software, written in Go and maintained and extended by the community. You can find the source here.


An app is a libre software that you use, e.g. Wordpress, Gitea, Jitsi, Nextcloud, etc. When you abra app deploy <domain>, you deploy an app. It is quite an overloaded term in general, often referring to many different things. We struggled with using this word but it seems to be one word people recognise and have a point of reference for.


A Docker term: a running instance of an image, running processes that are isolated from the host system.


When you run abra app deploy <domain>, abra reads a recipe configuration and creates an app.


Docker Inc., the company who popularised the concept of the container. The same company has created the underlying tools & libraries that abra uses to get work done.

Environment variables

Variables passed from the shell to processes invoked by it. They are used for configuring services.

Environment file

A file contained in a recipe describing the contents of environment variables.


A Docker term: a template for creating containers, describing their file structure and installed binaries.

Proxy network

A Docker related concept: a virtual network created on the server machine used for communicating between services. Any service can be plugged into more than one network, allowing for control over data sharing between them.


A recipe is what we call the configuration files that are used to deploy an app. When you run abra app deploy <domain>, abra is reading a recipe configuration, such as the gitea recipe, in order to know how to deploy a new Gitea instance. When we speak of a "digital configuration commons", we're primarily referring to the growing collection of recipes.


A Docker related concept: A way to store passwords encrypted on disk and mounted inside the containers as files that can be read that contain the secret. See the Docker secrets documentation for more. abra makes use of this approach to store secrets for deployed apps.


A Docker term: a single container that is a part of a stack.


A Docker term: one or more services running together to provide a functionality.


A Docker term: a directory that can be mounted inside a container to store data. Because containers are meant to be non-changeable and disposable, any data that is supposed to not be lost between updates or restarts is stored in volumes.