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Version: v2.x

Preview Apps


With Preview Apps you can automatically create an app on Hasura Cloud for every pull request you make to your GitHub repo enabling quick and easy testing of changes as you work.


Hasura Cloud enables creating Preview Apps from a branch on GitHub on each. This allows you to spin up a Hasura Cloud Preview App on each pull request in order to automatically preview changes.

This can be achieved using either of the following:


This feature is currently in beta. Please reach out through our support channels with any questions or concerns or open an issue on the Hasura Cloud Preview Apps GitHub action repository.

Usage Limit

For users with only Free tier projects on Hasura Cloud, usage of the Preview App API is limited to 60 calls per month. More plans are coming soon.

Preview Apps GitHub Action

Hasura Cloud enables automatically creating Preview Apps with Migrations and Metadata from a branch on a GitHub repo by triggering a new deployment using the official Hasura Cloud Preview Apps GitHub action.

GitHub Action Workflow steps

This GitHub Action will do the following:

  • Clones the repository from the given branch.
  • Creates a Hasura Cloud Preview App and applies the Migrations and Metadata. Refer to the GitHub action docs for more options.
  • Provides the following action outputs in the workflow so that you can use them for the subsequent jobs:
  • graphQLEndpoint: GraphQL endpoint of the created Hasura Cloud project.
  • consoleURL: Console URL of the created Hasura Cloud project.
  • projectName: Name of the created Hasura Cloud project.
  • projectId: The project ID of the created Hasura Cloud project.
  • Comments on the pull request in the configured format.

For more detailed information, please refer to the GitHub action docs action docs.

Configure the Hasura Cloud Preview Apps GitHub Action

Follow the steps below to configure the Hasura Cloud Preview Apps GitHub Action in your GitHub repository.

Step 1: Create a Hasura Cloud Personal Token

Personal Access Tokens are used to authenticate requests made to Hasura Cloud APIs. A personal access token can be created by navigating to Account Settings section by clicking the button My Account on the bottom left of your Hasura Cloud dashboard and selecting the Access Tokens submenu.

Create a Hasura Cloud personal access token

Copy the generated personal access token, this will be needed in further steps.

Step 2: Add a Hasura Cloud personal token to GitHub repository secrets

On GitHub, navigate to the repository with which you want to set up the Hasura Cloud Preview Apps GitHub Action and select the Settings tab.

Select Secrets from the submenu on the left and click Actions. Click on New repository secret to add a new secret.

Create Access Token

Populate the Name field with HASURA_CLOUD_ACCESS_TOKEN and Value field with the personal access token generated in step 1 and click Add secret to save.

Create Access Token

A successfully added secret will result in this screen.

Create Access Token

Step 3: Database setup

Hasura Preview Apps apply Migrations and Metadata on new database/s. This means that new database(s) are required for each Preview App.

If you use a Postgres database, the Hasura Cloud Preview Apps GitHub Action can create fresh, ephemeral databases for use in the Preview App, using the provided connection string to your Postgres server. The corresponding connection string of this fresh database gets added in the Hasura Cloud's project env vars as defined in the action's PG_ENV_VARS_FOR_HASURA env var.

Some points to keep in mind to ensure this works:

  1. The Postgres server should accept connections over the internet. You can follow this guide to set up a Postgres server on a DigitalOcean droplet or on a VM provided by another vendor of your choice.

To use Postgres in SSL mode, please provide the sslmode=require key-value pair as the last parameter in the connection string. Eg: postgresql://username:password@host:port/dbname?key=value&sslmode=require. :::

  1. In the Hasura Cloud Preview App Action's configuration YAML file, under the postgresDBConfig key, POSTGRES_SERVER_CONNECTION_URI and PG_ENV_VARS_FOR_HASURA must be configured.
  • POSTGRES_SERVER_CONNECTION_URI: Connection URI of your Postgres through which the action will create fresh ephemeral databases on your Postgres server. It's recommended that you not provide the value in the configuration file itself, instead the connection URI should be added to the respective GitHub repository's secret, as done in Step 2 for a personal access token, in order to keep it secure.

  • PG_ENV_VARS_FOR_HASURA: This key accepts Hasura Cloud env vars corresponding to the Postgres data sources to be automatically populated by the action in the Hasura Cloud Project created for the Preview App. These env vars are typically referenced in your Hasura Metadata. When the action creates new ephemeral databases, the env vars defined here will get populated with the connection URI corresponding to the new ephemeral databases.

A sample configuration for the above two keys in the action's configuration file would look like this:

postgresDBConfig: |

The above snippet will create three temporary databases and expose their connection string to the created Preview App through PG_DB_URL1, PG_DB_URL2 and PG_DB_URL3 Hasura Cloud env vars.


If you use databases other than Postgres, you can create the ephemeral databases yourself and pass the env vars in the hasuraEnv field of the action's configuration file.

Step 4: Add a workflow to your GitHub repo

For creating the action's configuration file, we have created a YAML generator to ease the process of creating one.

  1. Navigate to the Hasura Cloud Preview Apps GitHub Action YAML Generator.
Create Access Token
  1. Populate the fields as per the required configuration and click Generate YAML.
FieldYAML keyDescription
Repository Nameunder hasura/hasura-cloud-preview-apps job: nameThe GitHub repository to be configured with this action, without the author/organization name. For example, if the repo is located at, the input to the field will be test-repo.
Path to Hasura Project (in repo)under hasura/hasura-cloud-preview-apps job: hasuraProjectDirectoryPathPath to the Hasura Project directory (typically created by the Hasura CLI) containing Migrations and Metadata. The path should be relative to the project's root directory.
Project Regionunder hasura/hasura-cloud-preview-apps job: region and tierHasura Cloud project region to create projects in. The regions are available in two tiers: Free tier and Standard tier across various regions, and under two cloud providers: AWS and GCP.
Environment Variablesunder hasura/hasura-cloud-preview-apps job: hasuraEnvEnv vars to be set in the Hasura Cloud project created.
Commentunder hasura/comment-progress job: messageContent to be displayed in the comment on the PR for which the Preview App is created. If you do not want a comment to be posted, clear this field.
Postgres Connection URIunder hasura/hasura-cloud-preview-apps job: postgresDBConfig: POSTGRES_SERVER_CONNECTION_URIPostgres server connection URI. For more information, check Step 3.
Ephemeral Database Setup: Environment Variableunder hasura/hasura-cloud-preview-apps job: postgresDBConfig: PG_ENV_VARS_FOR_HASURAEnvironment variables for connecting to your newly created databases. For more information, check Step 3.

By default, the generated YAML gets triggered on all pull requests to the main branch and on pushes to the main branch. If you'd like to alter this, please change the generated YAMl appropriately. Please refer the official GitHub docs for more information.

  1. Create a file .github/workflows/hasura-cloud-preview-app.yml and populate it with the content generated above.

A sample file would look like this:

name: 'preview-apps'
on: # rebuild any PRs and main branch changes
- main
runs-on: ubuntu-latest
- uses: actions/checkout@v2
- uses: hasura/hasura-cloud-preview-[email protected]
name: 'preview-repo-name-${{github.env.GITHUB_HEAD_REF}}${{github.event.number}}'
postgresDBConfig: |
hasuraProjectDirectoryPath: hasura
region: us-west-1
tier: cloud_free
hasuraEnv: |
- uses: hasura/comment-[email protected]
github-token: ${{secrets.GITHUB_TOKEN}}
id: preview_app_comment
number: ${{github.event.number}}
repository: ${{env.GITHUB_REPOSITORY}}
message: |
Console URL available at ${{steps.hasura_cloud_preview.outputs.consoleURL}}
GraphQL Endpoint available at ${{steps.hasura_cloud_preview.outputs.graphQLEndpoint}}

Step 5: Set up the deletion of Preview Apps

You can set up cleanup for the above workflow. Preview Apps, along with the ephemeral databases created for it, need to be deleted to avoid unnecessary costs.

Create a file .github/workflows/delete-hasura-cloud-preview-app.yml in your git repo and add the following code:

types: [closed]

runs-on: ubuntu-latest
- uses: actions/checkout@v2

- name: Hasura Cloud Preview Apps
uses: hasura/hasura-cloud-preview-[email protected]
name: 'repo-name-${{github.env.GITHUB_HEAD_REF}}${{github.event.number}}'
postgresDBConfig: |
delete: true
GITHUB_TOKEN: ${{secrets.GITHUB_TOKEN}} # ${{ secrets.GITHUB_TOKEN }} is provided by default by GitHub actions
HASURA_CLOUD_ACCESS_TOKEN: ${{secrets.HASURA_CLOUD_ACCESS_TOKEN}} # Hasura Cloud access token to contact Hasura Cloud APIs

This will make sure that whenever the pull request is closed, the Preview App gets deleted.


If you have used postgresDBConfig in the creation workflow, make sure that you also include it in the deletion workflow so that the created databases get deleted when the pull request gets closed/merged.

Preview Apps API

If the hasura/hasura-cloud-preview-apps GitHub action does not suit your needs, you can also directly contact the createGitHubPreviewApp API to manually setup Preview Apps for your GitHub repo.

A GraphQL mutation to create a Preview App will be of the following format:

mutation createGitHubPreviewApp {
payload: {
githubPersonalAccessToken: "<github_access_token>"
githubRepoDetails: { branch: "main", owner: "my-org", repo: "my-repo", directory: "backend/hasura" }
projectOptions: {
cloud: "aws"
region: "us-east-2"
plan: "cloud_free"
name: "my-app_name"
envVars: [
{ key: "HASURA_GRAPHQL_AUTH_HOOK", value: "" }
{ key: "MY_ENV_VAR_1", value: "my value 1" }
) {
githubPreviewAppJobID # job ID of the Preview App creation job

This mutation queues the creation of the Preview App and returns a UUID: githubPreviewAppJobID.

You can get the creation status of the Preview App by running the following query at

query getPreviewAppCreationStatus($jobId: uuid!) {
jobs_by_pk(id: $jobId) {
tasks {
task_events {

Make sure to set the githubPreviewAppJobID in the id argument to the GraphQL query.

How it works

Hasura Cloud exposes the GraphQL mutation createGitHubPreviewApp which can be triggered programmatically using your Hasura Cloud personal access token. This mutation creates a Hasura Cloud project with the given set of environment variables and the Migrations and Metadata from a branch of a GitHub repo.

When the mutation is triggered, Hasura Cloud queues the Preview App for creation. If a Preview App with the same name already exists for a user, it is cleaned up and Migrations and Metadata are applied on a fresh Preview App. The cleanup is done so that every deployment is declarative and reproducible.