An environment variable is a variable whose value is set outside the program, typically through a functionality built into the operating system or microservice. An environment variable is made up of a name/value pair, and any number may be created and available for reference at a point in time.
Environment variables are excellent for decoupling application configurations. Typically, our applications require many variables to be set in order for them to work. By relying on external configurations, your app can easily be deployed on different environments. These changes are independent of code changes, so they do not require your application to be rebuilt to change.
They externalize all environment specific aspects of your app and keep your app encapsulated. Now you can run your app anywhere by modifying the environment variables without changing your code and without rebuilding it!
Some specific examples of common scenarios when you should consider using environment variables.
- Which HTTP port to listen on
- What path and folder your files are located in, that you want to serve
- Pointing to a development, staging, test, or production database
Thanks to our Console in the SetUp Infrastructure area it's possible to manage your Environment Variables.
Mia-platform uses the prefix concept to manage the differentiation between variables.
Each variable is in fact associated with a prefix indicating the environment in which the variable is to be interpolated.
How do prefixes work?
Prefixes can be of two types:
global for all the platform, that is valid in any environment. The global prefix is
differentiated according to the environment
The variables differentiated by environment instead have a different prefix based on the environment. the prefixes are as follows:
- Test environment:
- Preprod environment:
- Production environment:
Remember to add a prefix to your variable in the creation phase.
When you start with a new project you will find variables already configured. to add a new variable press the button at the bottom of the table "create a new variable" and fill in the form:
- the key is mandatory and identifies your variable. Remember to use the prefix to manage the differentiation between environment.
- the value is the value you want to attribute to your variable, the one that will be interpolated.
When a value contains some
$ characters it is required to add another
$ just before the original ones, otherwise the variable will be truncated just before the dollar sign.
- Desired value to interpolate:
- Actual value to write:
Changing the value of an existing variable is very simple. Click on the edit button in the same row as the variable you want to edit. Once you press the vsi button a modal will open. The key is an unchangeable value. Once the value has been changed, you just have to press the save button.
To delete a variable, press the delete button corresponding to the desired variable. A modal will open. To cancel the variable you will be asked to enter the name of the key. The name of the key must be identical otherwise you will not be able to delete it.