How to create an alias in Ansible Inventory File?

Creating Aliases in Ansible Inventory Files: A Step-by-Step Guide

When working with Ansible, one of the crucial components is the Inventory file, which includes the list of all hosts that Ansible manages. Sometimes, it’s more convenient to use aliases instead of full domain names or IP addresses. In this guide, we’ll explain how you can create aliases in an Ansible Inventory file.

What are Aliases?

In Ansible, an alias is a shorter, more convenient name that you can assign to a host. It’s particularly useful when working with long or complex hostnames or IP addresses.

Creating Aliases in an Ansible Inventory File

To create an alias, you simply specify the alias name and connect it to the actual host using the ansible_host variable. The following is the general format:

Here, alias is the name that you want to use in your playbooks, and your_actual_host is the actual hostname or IP address of the host.

Example of Using Aliases

Imagine you have a server with the IP address, and you want to refer to it as my_server in your playbooks. Here’s how you can set that up in your inventory file:

Now, when you write your playbooks, you can use my_server instead of This makes your playbook easier to read and understand.

Here’s an example of a simple playbook using the my_server alias:

When you run this playbook, Ansible will execute the df -h command on the server with the IP address


Creating aliases in your Ansible Inventory file is a simple way to improve the readability and maintainability of your Ansible playbooks. By using meaningful aliases instead of raw IP addresses or complicated hostnames, you can make your automation tasks more straightforward and understandable.