Ansible: how to get output to display


I have the following playbook, Playbook with output

There are currently no errors and it runs fine. However, it does not display the output to the console. I have come across this with other playbooks and got around it by adding the following task to the playbook:

-debug: var=output.stdout_lines

and it prints the output. However, I tried to do the same thing in the above playbook and it says that the variable was undefined (code not shown because it didn't work).

Is anyone aware of a better way to get the output to print to the console without using -debug? Any ansible references would be greatly appreciated.

This question is tagged with ansible

~ Asked on 2017-02-17 16:14:02

The Best Answer is


Every Ansible task when run can save its results into a variable. To do this, you have to specify which variable to save the results into. Do this with the register parameter, independently of the module used.

Once you save the results to a variable you can use it later in any of the subsequent tasks. So for example if you want to get the standard output of a specific task you can write the following:

- hosts: localhost
    - shell: ls
      register: shell_result

    - debug:
        var: shell_result.stdout_lines

Here register tells ansible to save the response of the module into the shell_result variable, and then we use the debug module to print the variable out.

An example run would look like the this:

PLAY [localhost] ***************************************************************

TASK [command] *****************************************************************
changed: [localhost]

TASK [debug] *******************************************************************
ok: [localhost] => {
    "shell_result.stdout_lines": [

Responses can contain multiple fields. stdout_lines is one of the default fields you can expect from a module's response.

Not all fields are available from all modules, for example for a module which doesn't return anything to the standard out you wouldn't expect anything in the stdout or stdout_lines values, however the msg field might be filled in this case. Also there are some modules where you might find something in a non-standard variable, for these you can try to consult the module's documentation for these non-standard return values.

Alternatively you can increase the verbosity level of ansible-playbook. You can choose between different verbosity levels: -v, -vvv and -vvvv. For example when running the playbook with verbosity (-vvv) you get this:

PLAY [localhost] ***************************************************************

TASK [command] *****************************************************************
changed: [localhost] => {
    "changed": true,
    "cmd": "ls",
    "delta": "0:00:00.007621",
    "end": "2017-02-17 23:04:41.912570",
    "invocation": {
        "module_args": {
            "_raw_params": "ls",
            "_uses_shell": true,
            "chdir": null,
            "creates": null,
            "executable": null,
            "removes": null,
            "warn": true
        "module_name": "command"
    "rc": 0,
    "start": "2017-02-17 23:04:41.904949",
    "stderr": "",
    "stdout": "play.retry\nplay.yml",
    "stdout_lines": [
    "warnings": []

As you can see this will print out the response of each of the modules, and all of the fields available. You can see that the stdout_lines is available, and its contents are what we expect.

To answer your main question about the jenkins_script module, if you check its documentation, you can see that it returns the output in the output field, so you might want to try the following:

  - jenkins_script:
      script: (...)
    register: jenkins_result

  - debug:
      var: jenkins_result.output

~ Answered on 2017-02-17 23:08:20

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