Using Jenkins on DC/OS

Using Jenkins on DC/OS

Jenkins is a popular, open source continuous integration (CI) automation server and framework with hundreds of plugins (GitHub, Docker, Slack, etc) available. Running Jenkins on DC/OS allows you to scale your CI infrastructure by dynamically creating and destroying Jenkins agents as demand increases or decreases, and enables you to avoid the statically partitioned infrastructure typical of a traditional Jenkins deployment.

Time Estimate

Varies (up to 45 minutes)

Target Audiences

Operators, Application administrators, Quality / Release engineers, CI/CD administrators


In the following tutorial, you’ll learn about how to use Jenkins on DC/OS. You’ll learn how to install Jenkins, and then how to use it to build and deploy a Docker image on Marathon.

Table of Contents

  • Prerequisites
  • Installing Jenkins in a development environment
  • Installing Jenkins in production
    • Creating a CIFS file share on Microsoft Azure
    • Mounting an Azure CIFS file share on Debian
    • Creating a NFS file share with Amazon EFS
    • Mounting an NFS file share on CoreOS
  • Building a Docker image and deploying it to Marathon
  • Uninstalling Jenkins
  • Further reading


Assuming you already have a DC/OS cluster up and running, you’ll first want to install a user-specific Marathon instance. This will serve as the deployment platform for any user-created applications that are deployed by Jenkins.

dcos package install marathon
We recommend a minimum of one node with at least 2 CPU shares and 1GB of RAM
available for the Marathon DC/OS Service.
Continue installing? [yes/no] yes
Installing Marathon app for package [marathon] version [1.1.1]
Marathon DC/OS Service has been successfully installed!

    Issues: https:/

This Marathon instance will appear in the DC/OS dashboard as marathon-user.

Jenkins works by persisting information about its configuration and build history as files on disk. Therefore, we have two options for deploying Jenkins on DC/OS: pin it to a single node, or use a network file system such as NFS, CIFS, and so on.

Installing Jenkins in a development environment

If you only want to run Jenkins in a development environment, it’s trivial to pin it to a single agent in the DC/OS cluster. Create the file options.json with the configuration below, modifying pinned-hostname to correspond to an agent IP in your DC/OS cluster:

cat options.json
    "storage": {
        "pinned-hostname": ""

Tip: for a complete list of the configuration options available for the Jenkins package, see the Jenkins package definition in the Mesosphere Universe.

Once you create options.json, you can then install Jenkins by running the following command:

dcos package install jenkins --options=options.json

Once ready, Jenkins will appear as a service in the DC/OS dashboard.

Installing Jenkins in production

As mentioned previously, running Jenkins in a production environment will require that each machine in the cluster has an external volume mounted at the same location. This external volume can be backed by any number of systems, including NFS, CIFS, Ceph, and others. This will allow Jenkins to persist data to the external volume while still being able to run on any agent in the cluster, preventing against outages due to machine failure.

If you already have a mount point, great! Create an options.json file that resembles the following example:

cat options.json
    "service": {
        "name": "jenkins-prod",
        "cpus": 2.0,
        "mem": 4096
    "storage": {
        "host-volume": "/mnt/jenkins"

Then, install Jenkins by running the following command:

dcos package install jenkins --options=options.json

If you don’t have a file share set up and are looking for a solution, continue to the next section for instructions on how to set up a shares using CIFS on Microsoft Azure or NFS on Amazon EFS.

Creating a CIFS file share on Microsoft Azure

First, you need to create a Storage Account in the same resource group in which you’ve launched your DC/OS cluster.

In this particular example, let’s create the storage account mh9storage in the resource group mh9:

Azure Portal: Storage Account

Now, create a file share. In this example, I used jenkins:

Azure Portal: File Service

Mounting an Azure CIFS file share on Debian

Next, login to the DC/OS master node. To determine the master, look up the SSH connection string labeled SSHMASTER0 in the Outputs section of the Microsoft.Template.

Azure Portal: Deployment Output

Next, add the private SSH key locally:

ssh-add ~/.ssh/azure
Identity added: /Users/mhausenblas/.ssh/azure (/Users/mhausenblas/.ssh/azure)

And now, login to the master node. Note that the -L 8000:localhost:80 is forwarding port 8000 from your local machine to port 80 on the remote host.

ssh -A -p 2200 \
    -L 8000:localhost:80

On this node you can now mount the File Share we created in the previous step. First, let’s make 100% sure that the CIFS mount utils are available:

sudo apt-get update && sudo apt-get -y install cifs-utils

Now we can mount the file share:

azureuser@dcos-master-415F65E0-0:~sudo mkdir -p /mnt/jenkins
azureuser@dcos-master-415F65E0-0:~sudo mount -t cifs    \
  // /mnt/jenkins \
  -o vers=3.0,username=REDACTED,password=REDACTED,dir_mode=0777,file_mode=0777

Be sure to replace the REDACTED value for the username and password options with your username and password. Note that the value for password is KEY2 from Access keys, as shown here:

Azure Portal: Storage Account Access Keys

To check if the file share works, we upload a test file via the Azure portal:

Azure Portal: Storage File Upload

If all is well, you should be able to list the contents of the mounted file share on the DC/OS master node:

azureuser@dcos-master-415F65E0-0:~ls -al /mnt/jenkins
total 1
-rwxrwxrwx 1 root root 19 Mar 20 11:21 test.txt

Finally, using the pssh tool, configure each of the DC/OS agents to mount the file share.

sudo apt-get install pssh
cat pssh_agents

parallel-ssh -O StrictHostKeyChecking=no -l azureuser -h pssh_agents "if [ ! -d "/mnt/jenkins" ]; then mkdir -p "/mnt/jenkins" ; fi"
parallel-ssh -O StrictHostKeyChecking=no -l azureuser -h pssh_agents "mount -t cifs // /mnt/jenkins -o vers=3.0,username=REDACTED,password=REDACTED,dir_mode=0777,file_mode=0777"

Creating an NFS file share with Amazon EFS

To start, open the Amazon EFS console, click Create file system and then Create file system. Ensure you are in the same availability zone as as your DC/OS cluster.

Select the VPC of your DC/OS cluster and click Next Step:

Amazon EFS: Configure Access

Optional settings can be left blank, or you can add tags to the volume if desired. Click Next Step:

Amazon EFS: Optional Settings

You will see a “Review and create” screen. Double check that the appropriate availability zone is selected, then click Create File System:

Amazon EFS: Review and Create

Once your EFS volume has been created, Amazon provides a link (click here) on instructions for mounting on Amazon, Red Hat, and SuSE Linux:

Amazon EFS: Created

See below for instructions on mounting an NFS volume on CoreOS.

Mounting an NFS file share on CoreOS

First, get the link to the EFS NFS fileshare you created in the previous step, replacing xxxxxxxx with your unique EFS ID:

echo $(curl -s

Next, follow our documentation for mounting NFS volumes to mount your EFS NFS filesystem on each of your DC/OS agents.

Building a Docker image and deploying it to Marathon

Note: for this example, I’ll assume you already have your own Docker Hub account or access to a Docker image registry.

By default, the Jenkins package is configured with a Docker-in-Docker agent that allows you to build Docker images on top of DC/OS. Nothing else is needed on your part!

Mesosphere maintains an open source Marathon plugin for Jenkins, which allows you to easily deploy an application to Marathon. To install it, perform the following steps:

  1. Download the .hpi file for the latest Marathon plugin here:
  2. Upload the .hpi plugin file via the “Advanced” tab within the Jenkins plugin manager: Jenkins plugin installation
  3. Restart Jenkins to load the new plugin.

Next, you’ll configure a Jenkins job that clones a repository, builds the image, pushes it to Docker Hub, and deploys it to Marathon.

Configure Git repository

For the build step, you may use (or adapt) the following build script:


docker build -t $IMAGE_NAME .
docker push $IMAGE_NAME

Finally, configure a post-build step using the Marathon plugin:

Marathon deployment post-build step

An example of a Marathon deployment follows:

Marathon deployment post-build configuration

Uninstalling Jenkins

Using the DC/OS CLI, run the following command:

dcos package uninstall jenkins

Further Reading