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Working with Go Embed

With the release of Go-1.16, Go released a core package called embed. This post will cover the various ways we can use Go Embed and build applications with ease.

Building a Web Application

Golang being a versatile language, it is very much capable of being used to write server for web applications.
We would be using React as the front-end for this and expose the full scale web application from a single Golang binary.

App Structure

In the Project root, we maintain the server in the root and expose the client from within the client folder.

main.go --> main driver of the application from which the server is started and the client is exposed statically


//go:embed client/build
var content embed.FS
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Golang 1.16 comes with the go:embed directive.
We just specify the target folder which we want to map to our server.

Exposing the app on the root of your running server

mux.HandleFunc("/", rootHandler)
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Create a function called rootHandler.
rootHandler exposes the static content onto the / endpoint.

func rootHandler(w http.ResponseWriter, req *http.Request) {
    upath := req.URL.Path
    if !strings.HasPrefix(upath, "/") {
        upath = "/" + upath
        req.URL.Path = upath
    upath = path.Clean(upath)
    fsys := fs.FS(content)
    contentStatic, _ := fs.Sub(fsys, "client/build")
    if _, err := contentStatic.Open(strings.TrimLeft(upath, "/")); err != nil {
        req.URL.Path = "/"
    http.FileServer(http.FS(contentStatic)).ServeHTTP(w, req)
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This is enough for exposing the static build of the react app via a Golang server.

Building the Golang Binary

GOOS=linux go build -o server main.go
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Running the server binary

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Now once this is tested on a localhost, we can build a Docker Image for this WebApp.


FROM alpine:latest

ADD server /opt/app/

WORKDIR /opt/app/

RUN ls -lrt


CMD ["./server"]
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Docker Build and Run Command

docker build -t server:v1.0 .
docker run -d -p 9000:9191 server:v1.0
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Overall we can say that introduction of go:embed has made some previous complicated tasks much simpler. We can now expose a full fledged web application with a single golang binary and expose it on any platform.

To read more about go:emebed use the following references:

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