Welcome!

Apache Authors: Elizabeth White, Pat Romanski, Liz McMillan, Christopher Harrold, Janakiram MSV

Related Topics: @DevOpsSummit, Apache

@DevOpsSummit: Blog Post

Chef Recipes By @ScripRock | @DevOpsSummit [#DevOps #Containers #GuardRail]

Generating Chef Recipes from Existing Configs

Generating Chef Recipes from Existing Configs

We've covered the benefits and pitfalls of configuration management tools like Chef in many articles. But let's assume you've done your homework and decided Chef is the tool for you. How do you get started?

Funnily enough, one of the inspirations for ScriptRock was a not-so-successful Chef deployment. Only a poor craftsman blames his tools, so rather than pointing the finger at Chef we reflected on what we had done wrong. The problems we encountered trying to move a large, brown-field infrastructure to Chef, and to get culture, people, and processes to change at the same time, drove us to find a sound method for enterprise automation.

Essentially, we had put the cart before the horse: we started automating our infrastructure before we understood it. Without documentation of existing configuration state and scalable validation for the changes we were making, our automation efforts were bound to lead us in circles. 

So, what did we do? We came up with our "three waves" methodology: visibility, control, automation. While GuardRail is built to make those steps as easy possible, we think you'll benefit from following those steps regardless of what tooling you choose.

1. Visibility

The first step to making systemic changes to your infrastructure (or even just avoiding outages) is to know what you have. Historically this has been handled through barbaric methods like Word docs and spreadsheets. GuardRail starts by scanning nodes (Windows, *nix, cloud apps, etc) for configuration state, generating total state documentation that is completely up to date.

2. Control

Once you know what you have you want to be able to anticipate and validate changes to it. You expect test driven development from the dev team so why should there be a lesser standard for Ops? In GuardRail, this just means selecting the changed configuration items from a dev or QA environment and adding them to a policy. Scan data is turned into executable documentation to validate any changes so you know you're never going off the rails.

3. Automation

This is the golden ring, and if you've done the preparatory work you will reap your just reward. (The same goes if you rushed into automation without doing the prep work, but it will be an ironic Twilight Zone reward that's actually bad.) GuardRail has already captured the state of your development environment or existing infrastructure in a machine readable format, so now it's just a matter of selecting "Recipe" from a dropdown to get it as a Chef Recipe.

Get Started

If you want to compare Chef to other tools in your environment, GuardRail also exports to the syntaxes of PowerShell DSC, Puppet, Ansible, Salt, and Docker. You can see the whole thing in action in this video from TechEd 2014. It's free forever on up to five nodes and doesn't require a credit card to start. If you want to see it in action at ChefConf, come by and talk to us at booth #316.

Read the original blog entry...

More Stories By ScriptRock Blog

ScriptRock makes GuardRail, a DevOps-ready platform for configuration monitoring.

Realizing we were spending way too much time digging up, cataloguing, and tracking machine configurations, we began writing our own scripts and tools to handle what is normally an enormous chore. Then we took the concept a step further, giving it a beautiful interface and making it simple enough for our bosses to understand. We named it GuardRail after its function — to allow businesses to move fast and stay safe.

GuardRail scans and tracks much more than just servers in a datacenter. It works with network hardware, Cloud service providers, CloudFlare, Android devices, infrastructure, and more.

IoT & Smart Cities Stories
Early Bird Registration Discount Expires on August 31, 2018 Conference Registration Link ▸ HERE. Pick from all 200 sessions in all 10 tracks, plus 22 Keynotes & General Sessions! Lunch is served two days. EXPIRES AUGUST 31, 2018. Ticket prices: ($1,295-Aug 31) ($1,495-Oct 31) ($1,995-Nov 12) ($2,500-Walk-in)
Andrew Keys is Co-Founder of ConsenSys Enterprise. He comes to ConsenSys Enterprise with capital markets, technology and entrepreneurial experience. Previously, he worked for UBS investment bank in equities analysis. Later, he was responsible for the creation and distribution of life settlement products to hedge funds and investment banks. After, he co-founded a revenue cycle management company where he learned about Bitcoin and eventually Ethereal. Andrew's role at ConsenSys Enterprise is a mul...
Nicolas Fierro is CEO of MIMIR Blockchain Solutions. He is a programmer, technologist, and operations dev who has worked with Ethereum and blockchain since 2014. His knowledge in blockchain dates to when he performed dev ops services to the Ethereum Foundation as one the privileged few developers to work with the original core team in Switzerland.
René Bostic is the Technical VP of the IBM Cloud Unit in North America. Enjoying her career with IBM during the modern millennial technological era, she is an expert in cloud computing, DevOps and emerging cloud technologies such as Blockchain. Her strengths and core competencies include a proven record of accomplishments in consensus building at all levels to assess, plan, and implement enterprise and cloud computing solutions. René is a member of the Society of Women Engineers (SWE) and a m...
Digital Transformation and Disruption, Amazon Style - What You Can Learn. Chris Kocher is a co-founder of Grey Heron, a management and strategic marketing consulting firm. He has 25+ years in both strategic and hands-on operating experience helping executives and investors build revenues and shareholder value. He has consulted with over 130 companies on innovating with new business models, product strategies and monetization. Chris has held management positions at HP and Symantec in addition to ...
The challenges of aggregating data from consumer-oriented devices, such as wearable technologies and smart thermostats, are fairly well-understood. However, there are a new set of challenges for IoT devices that generate megabytes or gigabytes of data per second. Certainly, the infrastructure will have to change, as those volumes of data will likely overwhelm the available bandwidth for aggregating the data into a central repository. Ochandarena discusses a whole new way to think about your next...
CloudEXPO | DevOpsSUMMIT | DXWorldEXPO are the world's most influential, independent events where Cloud Computing was coined and where technology buyers and vendors meet to experience and discuss the big picture of Digital Transformation and all of the strategies, tactics, and tools they need to realize their goals. Sponsors of DXWorldEXPO | CloudEXPO benefit from unmatched branding, profile building and lead generation opportunities.
Dynatrace is an application performance management software company with products for the information technology departments and digital business owners of medium and large businesses. Building the Future of Monitoring with Artificial Intelligence. Today we can collect lots and lots of performance data. We build beautiful dashboards and even have fancy query languages to access and transform the data. Still performance data is a secret language only a couple of people understand. The more busine...
All in Mobile is a place where we continually maximize their impact by fostering understanding, empathy, insights, creativity and joy. They believe that a truly useful and desirable mobile app doesn't need the brightest idea or the most advanced technology. A great product begins with understanding people. It's easy to think that customers will love your app, but can you justify it? They make sure your final app is something that users truly want and need. The only way to do this is by ...
DXWorldEXPO LLC announced today that Big Data Federation to Exhibit at the 22nd International CloudEXPO, colocated with DevOpsSUMMIT and DXWorldEXPO, November 12-13, 2018 in New York City. Big Data Federation, Inc. develops and applies artificial intelligence to predict financial and economic events that matter. The company uncovers patterns and precise drivers of performance and outcomes with the aid of machine-learning algorithms, big data, and fundamental analysis. Their products are deployed...