Use an existing application in Cloud Code for IntelliJ

If you have an existing project already configured with Kubernetes manifests, a Dockerfile, or Jib to build your images, you can open and use it with the plugin. The only additional configuration necessary is a Skaffold YAML file which either can be generated for you automatically or created using the provided template.

After you're done with configuring your Skaffold YAML, be sure to specify where your container images are stored where the project image is about to be pushed.

Automatic project bootstrapping

Your project must have one or more Kubernetes manifests. If Cloud Code detects any Kubernetes manifests in the project, Cloud Code will try to bootstrap.

If Cloud Code doesn't detect an existing Skaffold configuration, you will be prompted to help set it up.


Your project must meet the following prerequisites in order to be prompted to create a skaffold.yaml file and run any necessary configurations:

  • (Option 1) Your project has a Dockerfile and is configured for Jib, or

  • (Option 2) Your project is buildable using Buildpacks and has Kubernetes resources.

Set up Kubernetes run configuration

If the prerequisites are met, Cloud Code will prompt you with a notification to create a skaffold.yaml file (if one doesn't already exist) and any necessary run configurations:

Notification with a link to create your Cloud Code Kubernetes run configurations

  1. Click the notification. This automatically creates your configuration if possible.

    If automatic Skaffold configuration creation is not possible due to multiple images or builders being detected, Cloud Code will display a dialog asking you to provide mappings between the detected images and builders.

    Specify build settings to be used in your Skaffold configuration

    Alternatively, you can also set up a Skaffold configuration by navigating to Tools > Cloud Code > Kubernetes and selecting Add Kubernetes Support.

    This option analyzes your project's Kubernetes resources and generates a skaffold.yaml file (if one doesn't already exist) as well as necessary run configurations. The two run configurations generated include one to run your project on Kubernetes and one for development on a Kubernetes cluster.

  2. After support is added, you can start running and debugging your project on Kubernetes using the newly added run configurations.

Manually create a Cloud Code Skaffold configuration

You can choose to manually create a new skaffold.yaml file or add an existing one to your project.

To create a skaffold.yaml file manually using live templating, follow these steps:

  1. Create a new file named skaffold.yaml in the root directory of your project (right-click > New > File).

  2. With the cursor in the new file, press Ctrl+Space to bring up the live template suggestions and then choose the desired Skaffold template.

    Using the Skaffold YAML template

  3. Populate the image field with your project image name and the manifests field with a list of the Kubernetes resources you want to deploy from the IDE.

  4. After Cloud Code determines that your skaffold.yaml file is valid, click the prompt to create Kubernetes run configurations.

    Create Kubernetes run target notification

Examples of Cloud Code Skaffold configurations

  • Dockerfile based builds:

        - image: image_name
          - k8s/web.yaml
          - k8s/backend.yaml
  • Build section for Java Maven/Gradle projects with the Jib plugin (deploy section stays the same as the example above):

    - image: image_name
      jib: {}
  • If you'd like to define build, test, and deployment configurations for different contexts, you can have different profiles. Here's an example of a Cloud Build profile to configure Cloud Code to build images with Cloud Build:

    # use the cloudbuild profile to build images using Google Cloud Build
    - name: cloudbuild
        googleCloudBuild: {}
  • If you'd like to deploy your project with Helm, see the Helm documentation.

Specifying where container images are stored

Container image storage

Before you deploy your application, you'll need to define a default image repository to use with your project.

By default, the project is configured to use the image name specified in your Kubernetes manifests. You can also customize this image specification. Once you have your preferred repository set up (Artifact Registry, Container Registry, DockerHub, private repository, etc.), edit the run configurations and specify it as a default image repository in run configuration settings. For Google Container Registry images, the field comes equipped with autocomplete to help you find your Container Registry repository faster.

These are accessible from the Run/Debug configurations dialog on the top taskbar under Edit Configurations > Develop on Kubernetes > Image repository.

Default image repository in run configuration being set with the '' format and being presented autocomplete options based on current project and active cluster

For more on specifying your container image preferences, refer to the Configuring container image settings guide.

Build settings

Once you set your container image, you can configure its build settings. Cloud Code supports Docker, Jib, and Buildpacks artifact types.

On the Build / Deploy tab of your Run configuration settings (Edit Configurations > Develop on Kubernetes), you can configure the build settings for your default profile.

Build settings displayed in Build/Deploy tab

For more on specifying the build settings for your image, refer to the Configuring container image build preferences guide.

What's next

Get support

To submit feedback or report an issue in your IntelliJ IDE, go to Tools > Cloud Code > Help / About > Submit feedback or report an issue to report an issue on GitHub, or ask a question on Stack Overflow.