As an attempt to diversify, I have been using Vercel to build and host this website since its inception, as opposed to going with the more common choice of Netlify.

After being pleasantly surprised with the initial setup-and-first-build flow (the automatic HTTPS on custom domains is awesome), I stumbled upon something that baffled me: the default Hugo version Vercel uses to build your site dates from September 2019, and you have to jump through hoops to find out about it.

Getting the version of Hugo used to build your site

This came out due to the many discrepancies I was seeing between my local dev version (using the latest and shiniest v0.82.1) and the deployed site. It took me a couple of weeks before I realized that Vercel was not using the latest stable version as I was naïvely thinking, but was in fact using version… 0.58.2 from 2019-09-13!! 😨

In order to get this basic information, you need to change the build command to something like:

hugo version && hugo -D --gc

I’d hope Vercel would make this the default build command, as this undocumented[1][2] peculiarity made my first blog-and-deploy experience far more annoying than it ought to be.

I really don’t understand why they’d use such an outdated version, without even so much as a warning. Quite some things happened in Hugo-land since the somewhat “dramatic” changes in v0.60, which may have prompted this version pinning.


If someone at Vercel reads this, please either use the latest version by default or include the one you are using in your Docs and offer a way to specify a “latest” as the HUGO_VERSION environment variable.