Ansible - Stop halt or exit a playbook using meta end_play

The end_play parameter can be used to end a playbook. Take for example the following plays.

- debug: 
    msg: "Hello"

- meta: end_play

- debug: 
    msg: "World"


The following will be returned. Notice that "Hello" was printed but "World" was not printed, because the play was ended.

PLAY [all]

TASK [debug]
ok: [] => {
    "msg": "Hello"

PLAY RECAP : ok=1  changed=0  unreacable=0  failed=0


Typically, end_play is used when some condition evaluates to true or false. For example, end_play could be used along with x.stat.exists to end a play if a certain directory exists.

- name: determine if directory exists
    path: /path/to/directory
  register: out

- name: directory exists ending play
  meta: end_play
  when: out.stat.exists == true


Multiple hosts problem

However, this is not a great approach if a play is being run against two or more hosts, as the play will end while executing against the first host, and never move onto the next host. A better solution would be to apply a when statement to each task in the play to skip the task when a condition evaluates to true or false.

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