Feeds

back to article How to be a Puppet master: Make Amazon, VMware dance for you

Puppet, if you haven't heard of it, is automation software that takes on a role similar to Active Directory's group policy. Puppet can also handle application deployment, image deployment and anything else you can imagine that you would typically manage with scripts. Puppet is both cross platform and very simple to use. Born as …

COMMENTS

This topic is closed for new posts.
Gold badge
Thumb Up

Very cool

Very cool. I've never heard of Puppet. But it sounds like a nice "swiss army nice" automation tool, which is something that (although also useful for cloud as discussed here) would be useful for all sorts of uses. Having it also work on OSX and Windows is all the better.

1
0
Megaphone

The plural of box...

IS BOXES!

0
1
(Written by Reg staff) Silver badge

Re: The plural of box...

It's a play on 'oxen', as in, plural of ox.

C.

2
0
Silver badge
Pint

Re: The plural of box...

Did you really feel the need to reply to that?

Have a drink, today ends in 'y.'

2
0
Gold badge
Coffee/keyboard

Re: The plural of box...

Exactly how old are you? It's an honest question, because you are either young enough to never have used a modem where you had to put the phone on the modem to get it to work, or you never paid any attention to the history of the craft which this website reports on.

To wit: boxen contain blinkenlights. Use that newfangled tubular interwebnets to do a Google and discover the 411 on the wiki. (Did I get that right?)

Now get off my goddamned lawn.

1
0
Bronze badge

Re: The plural of box...

You must be a youngling:

http://www.outpost9.com/reference/jargon/jargon_17.html#TAG188

0
0
Megaphone

Re: The plural of box...

Yeah, I remember about the boxen with the blinkenlights, but good lord it's irritating to see in a semi-formal article. The joke wore pretty thin back in the day.

0
0
Bronze badge

puppet is obsolete

<voice of one of the bosses in "office space"> I'll make sure you get another copy of that memo. </voice>

The world has moved onto chef.

Myself I hate chef(been using it for 2 years - for the most part I try to avoid dabbling in it and let other folks in the team do the work), but that's just personal opinion of course, I prefer cfengine.

0
0
Linux

I love puppet, but it can at times be a little like playing high stakes kerplunk with your servers

0
0
Bronze badge
Mushroom

Group Policy is not Automation Software.

The equivalent of Puppet from Microsoft would be a small part of Systems Centre Configuration Manager, plus some of Systems Centre Orchestrator. (Unfortunately Puppet doesnt offer any of the features of Systems Centre Service Manager or Systems Centre Operations Manger.)

0
4
Gold badge
Pint

Oh look, everyone, it's Richto! Here to tell you that anything that doesn't put more money into Microsoft's coffers is inevitably bad! Of course, he hasn't the foggiest clue in hell what he's talking about - as usual - but he'll not let that stop him, will he? Charging valiantly onto the battlefield of a dead thread, Richto bravely explodes his heart upon heart upon any possibility of usefulness from a company that isn't Microsoft. Well, charging bravely between the hours of 9 and 5, Monday to Friday.

That said, yes Richto, Group Policy is indeed automation software. It is both configuration deployment and software deployment automation software. In fact, it is some of the most sophisticated configuration deployment software developed ever developed. It is why Microsoft slaughtered Novell at the turn of the millennium.

You are correct in that System Center Operations Manager provides [i]even more[/i] automation possibilities than Group Policy…but not by much. OpsMan mostly provides Agentful Monitoring and some integration with WSUS. Orchestrator extends even more configuration capabilities, and System Center Virtual Machine Manager would be required to fill our the rest of what Puppet can do.

That said, Puppet can indeed match GPOs, GPPs, SCOM, SCO, and SCVMM damned near feature-for-feature on the configuration automation front (not absolutely, no product is perfect,) while offering things that none of them can otherwise offer. Critical functionality that Microsoft’s offerings lack. Namely: cross platform support. Single-pane-of-glass configuration for multiple operating systems (and cloud services) where settings are the same. (Set NTP servers across all OSes from one place? De nada.)

Puppet is about automating configuration deployment. Which is pretty much [i]exactly[/i] what group policy was designed for. The fact that to meet Puppet’s full extent you need not one, but [i]three[/i] add on software packages from Microsoft - [i]and CALs[/i] – is the strongest advertisement for Puppet in a Microsoft shop there is.

But please do respond to this comment with alacrity. I do very much look forward to your very well researched, detailed and through analysis of exactly which elements of configuration automation that Puppet is missing, which Microsoft provides through their products. I am especially eager for you to explain – in detail – how those configuration items justify per-seat cost delta between all the MS CALs you’ll have to buy when compared to Puppet’s cost.

I’ll give you bonus points if you can do it without bringing systems monitoring into the conversation. Because we really don’t need to get into a catfight about “what Puppet can monitor versus what SCOM can monitor.” Real-time monitoring isn’t Puppet’s target, but it sure is making a heck of a lot of inroads into both monitoring [i]and[/i] configuration simulation.

Specifically, the integration work that has been done to tie it to Nagios has been extraordinary. And Nagios ****ing flattens SCOM for monitoring. Of course, if you hate Nagios, Puppet also has been made to work well with both Zenoss and icinga.

So please, Richto, if there are flaws in Puppet’s configuration automation as compared to Microsoft’s (very expensive) offerins, [i]do tell[/i]. I will be very happy to point the community at your response so they can promptly resolve the minor gaps in feature coverage.

Also, can you point me in the direction of Microsoft’s offerings which provide configuration automation for Linux, OSX, OpenStack, GCloud and EC2?

Answers on a postcard,

--Trevor.

2
0
Bronze badge
Mushroom

Wrong,. Group policy is - as it says - policy mangement - it in no way provides automation funtionality - which is what Systems Centre Orchestrator does.

SCOM was leagues in front of Nagios in the 2007 R2 version with far more intelligence in event correlations and issue resolution - and the gap has only widened since with the release of the 2012 version and the integration to Service Manager - for which there is simply no comparison for Nagios.

1
3

This post has been deleted by its author

Bronze badge
Mushroom

nb - SCOM includes monitoring legacy OSs out of the box too (seeing as that will be relevant for most Puppet users): http://blogs.technet.com/b/momteam/archive/2012/07/30/now-available-system-center-2012-operations-manager-monitoring-pack-for-unix-and-linux-operating-systems.aspx

.

0
3
J.T

I saw a demonstration where puppet discovered a number of servers from HP, Dell, and Cisco, and then with a couple of commands deployed full vmware clusters with vcenters in a couple of minutes with a cluster for each server type. Was amazing.

0
0
Bronze badge
Mushroom

Most automation systems could do that. Chef, Bladelogic, etc. The real value is in how easy is it to use and integrate and what capability does the whole setup give you? So for instance a customer requests 10 Hyper-V or ESX clusters with 20 different VMs, with installed applications - across multiple sites - some of which sit in an external cloud - can your system automate the whole request, approval, deployment, monitoring and capacity management for that?

See some examples here: http://blogs.technet.com/b/orchestrator/archive/2012/05/22/private-cloud-demo-extravaganza-videos.aspx

0
4
This topic is closed for new posts.