Using OVHcloud High Performance (S3) Object Storage as Terraform Backend to store your Terraform state

Find out how to use an OVHcloud High Performance (S3) Object Storage as a Terraform Backend to store your Terraform state

Last updated 12th July 2022


It is possible to store Terraform state on a remote data store/backend like an AWS S3 bucket, a Google Cloud Storage (GCS), etc. but are you aware that you can also store your Terraform states on an OVHcloud High Performance (S3) Object Storage container?

In this tutorial you will:

  • create an OVHcloud High Performance (S3) Object Storage container
  • create a Terraform remote backend
  • initialize your Terraform backend


Before you begin


Terraform is an open-source infrastructure as code (IaC) tool created by Hashicorp in 2014, and written in Go. It aims to build, change and version control your infrastructure. You can define and provision your infrastructure by writing the definition of your resources in Hashicorp Configuration Language (HCL).


This tool has a powerful and very intuitive command line interface (CLI). If you are interested in leveraging your knowledge about Terraform CLI, a Cheat Sheet exists.

At OVHcloud we created a Terraform provider that you can use to interact with and manage OVHcloud resources.

Terraform states and backend

Terraform has several concepts, one of them is the state.

A Terraform state is a snapshot of your infrastructure from when you last ran the terraform apply command. By default, the state file is stored locally in a terraform.tfstate file. But the common usage in production environment, is to store it remotely.

Terraform state schema

For example, you can store your Terraform state on an OVHcloud High Performance (S3) Object Storage container.

In order to do that you need to configure a backend in your Terraform HCL configuration files.

Terraform States are not encrypted at rest when stored inside an Object Storage container.


Creating a High Performance Object Storage container/bucket

First, you need to have a High Performance Object Storage container. If you don't already have one, you can follow the Creating a High Performance Object Storage container tutorial.

For this guide, our Object Storage container is named terraform-state-hp, its solution is High Performance and its region is GRA.

terraform state container in OVHcloud Object Storage

In order to store your Terraform states on an Object Storage, and generally if you want to interact with the Object Storage, you need to have the rights to manage an Object Storage. So, at this point of this tutorial, you should have a High Performance Object Storage container, a user and you can interact with the aws CLI and list the OVHcloud High Performance Object Storage containers that the user is linked to:

$ aws s3 ls
2022-07-11 16:20:48 my-container
2022-07-11 16:55:20 terraform-state-hp

Initializing Terraform configuration

Create a file with the following content:

terraform {
    backend "s3" {
      bucket = "terraform-state-hp"
      key    = "terraform.tfstate"
      region = "gra"
 #or sbg or any activated high performance storage region
      endpoint = ""
      skip_credentials_validation = true
      skip_region_validation = true

In this file you define a S3 Terraform backend in the gra region. Do not hesitate to change this parameter if you created an Object Storage container in another region.

Terraform Init

Now you can initialize your Terraform configuration with the terraform init command.

The terraform init command is used to initialize a working directory containing Terraform configuration files. This is the first command to run after writing a new Terraform configuration or cloning an existing one from version control. It is safe to run this command multiple times.

This command initializes the backend (remote or local state).

After executing this command, you should obtain a result like this:

$ terraform init

Initializing the backend...

Successfully configured the backend "s3"! Terraform will automatically
use this backend unless the backend configuration changes.

Terraform has been successfully initialized!

You may now begin working with Terraform. Try running "terraform plan" to see
any changes that are required for your infrastructure. All Terraform commands
should now work.

If you ever set or change modules or backend configuration for Terraform,
rerun this command to reinitialize your working directory. If you forget, other
commands will detect it and remind you to do so if necessary.

Now you can define your Terraform configuration files and providers and after running the terraform apply command, your Terraform state file will be stored in an OVHcloud Object Storage container.

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