Pup­pet: The Pop­u­lar Choice for IT Au­to­ma­tion

Pup­pet is used to con­fig­ure UNIX-like com­puter sys­tems as well as Win­dows sys­tems. It uses its own declar­a­tive lan­guage or a do­main spe­cific lan­guage. Let’s get to know this tool a bit bet­ter.

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Pup­pet is an IT con­fig­u­ra­tion man­age­ment tool and key soft­ware in the IT au­to­ma­tion arena. In Pup­pet, you can de­fine your in­fra­struc­ture con­fig­u­ra­tions and ap­pli­ca­tion con­fig­u­ra­tions. It gives you good vis­i­bil­ity of what has gone wrong and, by re­port­ing all tasks, will help you to record all the changes. By us­ing Pup­pet, sys­tems ad­min­is­tra­tors can re­duce the time spent on repet­i­tive tasks, en­sur­ing con­sis­tent con­fig­u­ra­tion across their in­fra­struc­ture.

Pup­pet is an open source tool de­vel­oped by Pup­pet Labs. It can be used on Linux (most flavours), So­laris, AIX and Win­dows plat­forms.

Pup­pet comes in two ver­sions—the open source com­mu­nity ver­sion and the en­ter­prise paid-for ver­sion. Even on a paid ver­sion, you get a one-month trial with a learn­ing VM from Pup­pet Labs.

Be­fore in­stalling Pup­pet, let’s com­pare it with an­other sim­i­lar tool called Chef on the af­ford­abil­ity pa­ram­e­ter.

1. Chef uses Ruby, which is a dif­fi­cult lan­guage to learn for be­gin­ners, while Pup­pet uses DSL (do­main spe­cific lan­guage), which is op­ti­mised for the task of de­scrib­ing re­sources.

2. Pup­pet has a larger in­stalled base, as com­pared to Chef.

3. Pup­pet has a large de­vel­oper com­mu­nity.

4. It sup­ports more plat­forms than Chef.

5. Pup­pet is declar­a­tive while Chef is not.

Pup­pet be­ing a declar­a­tive lan­guage means that you are writ­ing the code, and you de­cide what the sta­tus of your ma­chine should be af­ter run­ning the code and what not to do. The pro­gram will de­cide what to do to achieve the tar­get state of the server.

We will now dis­cover how to in­stall Pup­pet and use it. For test­ing pur­poses, you can ei­ther down­load the learn­ing VM from the Pup­pet Labs site, or you can down­load Pup­pet and in­stall it on a ma­chine.

Pr­ereq­ui­sites for in­stalling Pup­pet

1. En­sure the server and client names are fully re­solv­able.

2. Con­fig­ure the NTP ser­vice and en­sure that it is run­ning.

3. Down­load the Pup­pet pack­age (wget https://github.com/ pup­pet­labs/pup­pet).

In­stall the Pup­pet pack­age (cre­ate a repo with the folder and run yum in­stall pup­pet).

In­stall Apache (yum in­stall httpd) us­ing the fol­low­ing com­mand: 4. 5.

#In­stall pup­pet­mas­ter-pas­sen­ger 6.

In­stall the pack­age pas­sen­ger (yum in­stall pup­pet­mas­ter­pas­sen­ger).

Start Pup­pet (ser­vice pup­pet­server start).

Make Pup­pet start when the server boots (chk­con­fig on pup­pet­server), or down­load the learn­ing VM from Pup­pet Labs.

In­stall the Pup­pet agent on all client servers.

Pup­pet uses SSL cer­tifi­cates to au­then­ti­cate com­mu­ni­ca­tion be­tween mas­ter and agent nodes. The Pup­pet

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