Command-Line Tool

Command-line tool is named bzt and invoked like bzt <options> [configs]. Possible options are:

  • -h, --help - show help message and exit
  • -q, --quiet - only errors and warnings printed to console
  • -n, --no-system-configs - skip /etc/bzt.d and ~/.bzt-rc (see below)
  • -v, --verbose - prints all logging messages to console (sometimes a lot)
  • -l LOG, --log=LOG - change log file location, by default is bzt.log in current directory
  • -o OPTION, --option=OPTION override some config settings from command line, may be used multiple times

Configuration Files Processing

Taurus tool consumes configuration files as input format (start learning its syntax here), it automatically detects YAML and JSON formats. Internally, all configuration files are merged into single configuration object (see merged.config artifact), and each following config overrides/appends previous. There are some special config locations that allows having per-machine and per-user configs, that will be loaded for every tool run. In general, configs load sequence is:

  1. base-config.yml file from Taurus distribution
  2. /etc/bzt.d directory, contains machine-wide configs
  3. ~/.bzt-rc file, contained in user's home directory (holds per-user preferences) is added to list after per-machine configs
  4. all command-line passed configs (like bzt config-1.yml config-2.json) are added to list after per-user config
  5. all JMX shorthand configs generated and added to list (to support bzt my-existing.jmx launching)
  6. files list is loaded according to the merge rules
  7. included configs loaded and merged
  8. aliases applied
  9. all command-line option overrides (like bzt -o execution.0.scenario=my-test) are applied

Note that per-user config will not be copied into artifact directories, so those files are recommended to put API keys and tokens to improve security. Also, it is convenient place to set paths to tools and your favorite preferences.

There is special shorthand for JMeter JMX test plans: if a config filename ends with .jmx, an execution for JMeter with existing script will be generated. This allows using Taurus just like bzt test1.jmx test2.jmx.

A helper tool to validate YAML:

Command-Line Options Override

Any configuration option can be overridden from command line by using -o switch. Like this:

bzt stress.json -o modules.jmeter.path=alternate/jmeter/bin/jmeter -o provisioning=cloud

Rule for composing the override path is simple: it is built from dictionary keys and array indexes, separated by dot (.). If the array index is -1 then list is appended.

Consider the following Taurus configuration:

- concurrency: 100
  hold-for: 60s
  scenario: sample

    timeout: 500ms
    keepalive: true

The following override example creates the data-sources list (as it isn't specified in config) and sets the first element to data.csv:

bzt -o config.yaml

Note that Taurus parses overridden values as YAML. This means that you can override all types of values: numbers, strings, booleans and even lists and objects. Also, YAML is a superset of JSON, so you can use JSON syntax too.


# overriding JMeter property with a floating-point number
bzt -o script.yaml
# overriding requests list in scenario
# (note that you have to take whole override value in quotes because quotes and brackets have special meaning in shell)
bzt -o"['', '']" script.yaml
# overriding objects
bzt -o"{default-address: '', requests: ['/', '/reserve.php']}" script.yaml

And if you need to pass a string with quotations, you have to add an escaped level of quotes to it:

# this will set JMeter property `name` to value `"string with quotes"`.
bzt -o'"\"string with quotes\""' script.yaml

If you need to recursively override a value by giving only child node of the key:

# this will set all properties of 'default-address' under `scenario` to value `newValue`.
# (note that the replace works only on dictionaries and list of dictionaries)
bzt -o scenarios.*default-address='newValue' script.yaml


There is a way to create some config chunks and apply them from command-line like this: bzt -gui-mode -scenario1 Those aliases then searched in the config, in the section cli-aliases and applied over the configuration. Example:

        gui: true
        script: jmx2.jmx

URL Shorthands

There is a way to run a quick test on a URL (or a number of URLs) with a default load generator simply by using the target URL as a command-line argument.


This command will launch a quick test targeting You can combine it with other CLI options and aliases, such as -report, -cloud and others.


Each tool start creates artifacts directory under base dir (see settings.artifacts-dir command-line option). This directory is used to collect all files that were used with execution: configs (except personal), logs, generated scripts and everything else. Some of important artifacts are:

  • bzt.log - Taurus log, very detailed, great source for troubleshooting the tool
  • merged.yml and merged.json - configuration how it looks after merging all user's configuration files into one, saved in two formats
  • effective.yml and effective.json - configuration how it looks after applying defaults, shorthand rules and any other modifications during execution, saved in two formats. This is how Taurus sees its configuration instructions and how YAML maps to JSON

Exit codes

Taurus exit code signifies the way Taurus was ended.

  • 0 — No problems occurred.
  • 1 — Taurus finished with a generic error (networking, internal Taurus errors)
  • 2 — Taurus was manually shut down (Ctrl-C by user, process received SIGKILL, etc.)
  • 3 — Taurus was shut down automatically (e.g. Pass/Fail criteria, cloud tests failed, etc.)

Notice: Don't interrupt graceful shutdown after hitting Ctrl+C once, let the tool finish its cleanup. The tool is made to be obedient, so if you will insist on interrupting by pressing Ctrl+C for the second time, it will exit immediately. This will leave background processes unterminated, remote APIs will not be informed of the interrupt and, with high probability, some puppy or kitten might start crying. So let the tool shutdown gracefully, be patient.