How to use Packer Windows to create images on Azure/AWS/GCP

Setup and install Packer on Windows Server for the Cloud.  Packer is a great devops automation tool for creating server machine images for any of the cloud platforms (Azure/AWS/GCP).  To start using Packer on any of the cloud platforms, the quickest and easiest way is to install a server with Packer installed and configured. You can deploy Packer from any of the cloud marketplaces below:

Setup Packer on Windows Server

Table of Contents

Packer Windows Server features

Packer is an image creator server too for Azure, AWS & GCP cloud platforms. It is a modern configuration management by encouraging you to use automated scripts to install and configure the software within your Packer-made images. Other main features include: 


  • Automates the creation of server images
  • Pre bakes images with software & configuration
  • Uses WinRM or SSH to build images
  • Builds images for other cloud platforms in parallel
  • Uses Packer with your CI/CD Automation
  • Uses scripts to automate any server config
  • Key Vault integration.
  • Fast infrastructure deployment. Packer images allow you to launch completely provisioned and configured machines in seconds
  • Detailed logging, detect issues faster
  • Multi-provider portability with running your production in multi cloud environments, staging/QA in a private cloud like OpenStack, and development in desktop virtualization solutions such as VMware or VirtualBox.
  • Extending Packer with Plugins, that can add: builders, Data source, Post-processors and Provisioners.

Getting Started with using Packer to Create Images

RDP (Remote Desktop Protocol) into new server

Once you have deployed Packer on Windows server, the first step is to RDP into the new instance once it has fully booted up.  The following links explain how to connect the VM once it has finished being deployed:



Once logged in, you’re now ready to start setting up your new server as per the following sections. 

Using Packer on Windows

Once logged in, you’re ready to start using Packer. You can use any Windows terminal (Powershell or Windows Command Prompt) by running the packer command

Packer Server Documentation

The following links to documentation explain how to use Packer for each cloud platform and to start building images for your desired platform:

Packer Server Support

Packer Support

Support for using Packer can be found on their community section:

Disclaimer: Packer is a registered trademark of HashiCorp, Inc and is licensed under Mozilla Public License v2. No warrantee of any kind, express or implied, is included with this software. Use at your risk, responsibility for damages (if any) to anyone resulting from the use of this software rest entirely with the user. The author is not responsible for any damage that its use could cause.

If you have issues with installing Packer in your cloud environment leave a comment below or contact us directly and we will assist it getting the server up and running

Avatar for Andrew Fitzgerald
Andrew Fitzgerald

Cloud Solution Architect. Helping customers transform their business to the cloud. 20 years experience working in complex infrastructure environments and a Microsoft Certified Solutions Expert on everything Cloud.

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