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Cloud-init applies user data to your instances automatically, which is awesome and powerful. However, the more you embrace its usefulness, the more you work with large blobs of code (example) that can be difficult to validate, hard to version control, and easy to mess up. is a simple free tool that works like a "Docker hub for your cloud-init." Store snippets in and reference a single, concise url in your automation instead of a massive blob of code. Other benefits include built-in validation, version control, and easier access to some of cloud-init's more powerful (but hidden) features.