Puppet is a configuration management tool that has enjoyed phenomenal growth over
the last few years. Propelled by increasing demands on sysadmins, and the continuous
growth of infrastructure (both physical and virtual), Puppet has been one of the key
technology components of the DevOps movement. This cultural shift focuses on breaking
down the silo between development and operations. Tools like Puppet are important
to this movement because it allows application deployment knowledge to be expressed
as code to build automated release platforms.
Puppet is also helping lead the path towards software-defined infrastructure (or infrastructure
as code). As more systems in data centers support better APIs, the importance
of centralized configuration management increases. Puppet is leading this trend by leveraging
its model to manage more than the roles of individual systems. It also supports
network devices, load balancers, and managing virtual machine instances.
All system configurations in Puppet are expressed as resources that model complex
configurations using Puppet’s Domain Specific Language (DSL). Puppet supports a large
set of native resources for modeling the desired state of a system. Resources already exist
for managing most common elements of a system (users, groups, packages, services).
These native resources are implemented in Ruby using Puppet’s type and provider APIs.
The power of Puppet lies in its ability to manage the state of complex systems using this
simple resource model. This book discusses the highly extensible resource model and
the framework around it. It explores the extension points and how to leverage them to
expand Puppet’s functionality.
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