ZetCode

Go embed

last modified February 15, 2022

Go embed tutorial shows how to access embedded files from within a running Go program.

The embed package allows to access static files such as images and HTML files from within a running Go binary. It was introduced in Go 1.16.

Go embed a text file

In the first example, we embed a text file into a slice of bytes.

data/words.txt
sky
blue
rock
water
array
karma
falcon

We have a few words in the text file.

main.go
package main

import (
    "bytes"
    _ "embed"
    "fmt"
)

var (
    //go:embed data/words.txt
    data []byte
)

func main() {

    fmt.Println(string(data))

    fmt.Println("----------------------")

    words := bytes.Split(data, []byte{'\n'})

    for _, w := range words {

        fmt.Println(string(w))
    }
}

We embed a text file into the program and print the data.

var (
    //go:embed data/words.txt
    data []byte
)

Embedding is done by using the //go:embed directive above the variable declaration.

$ go build
$ ./txtfile.exe
sky
blue
rock
water
array
karma
falcon
----------------------
sky
blue
rock
water
array
karma
falcon

Go embed multiple files

In the following example, we embed two text files.

data/langs.txt
Perl
Raku
F#
Clojure
Go
C#

This is the langs.txt file.

data/words.txt
sky
blue
rock
falcon
war
tree
storm
cup

This is the words.txt file.

main.go
package main

import (
    "embed"
    "fmt"
)

//go:embed data/*
var f embed.FS

func main() {

    langs, _ := f.ReadFile("data/langs.txt")
    fmt.Println(string(langs))

    words, _ := f.ReadFile("data/words.txt")
    fmt.Println(string(words))
}

We embed two text files and print their contents.

//go:embed data/*
var f embed.FS

With the * wildcard character, we embed all files within the data directory.

$ go build
$ ./files.exe
Perl
Raku
F#
Clojure
Go
C#

sky
blue
rock
falcon
war
tree
storm
cup

Go embed static files

In the following example, we embed static files into a binary of a web application.

public/index.html
<!DOCTYPE html>
<html lang="en">
<head>
    <meta charset="UTF-8">
    <meta name="viewport" content="width=device-width, initial-scale=1.0">
    <title>Home</title>
</head>
<body>
    <p>
        Home page
    </p>
</body>
</html>

This is the index.html file.

public/about.html
<!DOCTYPE html>
<html lang="en">
<head>
    <meta charset="UTF-8">
    <meta name="viewport" content="width=device-width, initial-scale=1.0">
    <title>About</title>
</head>
<body>
    <p>
        About page
    </p>
</body>
</html>

This is the about.html file.

main.go
package main

import (
    "embed"
    "io/fs"
    "net/http"
)

//go:embed public
var content embed.FS

func handler() http.Handler {

    fsys := fs.FS(content)
    html, _ := fs.Sub(fsys, "public")

    return http.FileServer(http.FS(html))
}

func main() {

    mux := http.NewServeMux()
    mux.Handle("/", handler())

    http.ListenAndServe(":8080", mux)
}

The code example runs a server which serves two static files. We embed a whole directory.

//go:embed public
var content embed.FS

The embed.FS allows to embed a tree of files.

func handler() http.Handler {

    fsys := fs.FS(content)
    html, _ := fs.Sub(fsys, "public")

    return http.FileServer(http.FS(html))
}

The handler serves static files from the public directory. In Go, the http.FileServer is used to serve static content.

In this tutorial, we have showed how to access static files from within a running Go program using the embed package.

List all Go tutorials.