netplan-generate - generate back-end configuration from Netplan YAML files


netplan [--debug] generate -h|--help

netplan [--debug] generate [--root-dir ROOT_DIR] [--mapping MAPPING]


netplan generate converts Netplan YAML into configuration files understood by the back ends (systemd-networkd(8) or NetworkManager(8)). It does not apply the generated configuration.

You will not normally need to run this directly as it is run by netplan apply, netplan try, or at boot.

Only if executed during the systemd initializing phase (i.e. “Early boot, before is reached”), will it attempt to start/apply the newly created service units. *Requires feature: generate-just-in-time*

When called as a systemd.generator(7), all the parsing and validation errors will be ignored by default. If network definitions are skipped due to parsing errors, they might be incomplete. That means that the back end configuration emitted might not be fully valid.

For details of the configuration file format, see netplan(5).


-h, --help

Print basic help.


Print debugging output during the process.

--root-dir ROOT_DIR

Instead of looking in /{lib,etc,run}/netplan, look in /ROOT_DIR/{lib,etc,run}/netplan.

--mapping MAPPING

Instead of generating output files, parse the configuration files and print some internal information about the device specified in MAPPING.


There are 3 locations that netplan generate considers:

  • /lib/netplan/*.yaml

  • /etc/netplan/*.yaml

  • /run/netplan/*.yaml

If there are multiple files with exactly the same name, then only one will be read. A file in /run/netplan will shadow - completely replace

  • a file with the same name in /etc/netplan. A file in /etc/netplan will itself shadow a file in /lib/netplan.

Or, in other words, /run/netplan is top priority, then /etc/netplan, with /lib/netplan having the lowest priority.

If there are files with different names, then they are considered in lexicographical order - regardless of the directory they are in. Later files add to or override earlier files. For example, /run/netplan/10-xyz.yaml would be updated by /lib/netplan/20-abc.yaml.

If you have two files with the same key/setting, the following rules apply:

  • If the values are YAML boolean or scalar values (numbers and strings) the old value is overwritten by the new value.

  • If the values are sequences, the sequences are concatenated - the new values are appended to the old list.

  • If the values are mappings, Netplan will examine the elements of the mappings in turn using these rules.


netplan(5), netplan-apply(8), netplan-try(8), systemd-networkd(8), NetworkManager(8)