This might not be the most elegant way to deal with this problem, but often enough I find myself in a situation in which I try to run bootstrapping-stuff in my puppet-manifests or run a simple apt-get update command before provisioning with Puppet.

One way to solve this dilemma is to bootstrap custom Vagrant boxes with a tool like Veewee, which has served me well for more than a few times now.

But if it is a really simple task I’d like to get done, then I just fall back to the shell provisioner, and touch a file when I’m done, so the provisioner only runs on the very first time.

In your Vagrantfile

Add a provisioner right before your puppet or chef provisioner.

config.vm.provision :shell, :path => "your/path/to/"

In a separate Shell-Script e.g.

Add your bootstrapping-code and wrap it in a conditional expression.

if [ ! -e $STAGE ]; then
  # Your bootstrapping-code
  # * Add a user
  # * give sudo rights
  # * add ssh key, etc.
  touch $STAGE

Not that fancy, but it gets stuff done for your dev boxes.