How to Get Started with Puppet: a Beginner’s Guide

In the time when DevOps is getting all advanced, we needed to manage all our configurations. Because with infrastructure getting bigger and more complex, system administrators could not keep up with all the work. What they did was a lot of repetitive tasks such as installing and configuring the servers. With extensive infrastructure, even doing that became harder for them.

Let us talk about configuration management. It is a systems engineering term that refers to the process of maintaining the product's performance, physical attributes, design, and other requirements, and it is a continuous process. We usually do this by automation of the process, in which building, testing, and even deployment take place automatically. As we know, the size of infrastructure is getting bigger, and we cannot just leave everything on a systems engineer. One little mistake can bring havoc on the organization. In configuration management, we are concerned with Databases, servers, operating systems, networking, and software.

As it was a hard job to do for systems engineers, we required something to make this easier for us. A tool that can automate everything, in the infrastructure, and a mechanism that can make the process of delivery faster. Right at that time, a tool named Puppet gets introduced in the market and fulfills the needs of every business.

What is Puppet?

A puppet is one of the first tools used for configuration management. Mainly, it is used to deploy, manage, and configure a lot of applications and services across the infrastructure of an organization. It was composed to manage the configurations of Windows and Linux systems. Puppet Labs developed this tool, and it was formed using the Domain Specific Language of Ruby. A puppet is a tool that can automatically deploy applications and software on the nodes. It uses infrastructure as a code that is very good in terms of configuration management.

Versions of Puppet

There are two versions of Puppet available in the market.

  • Open-Source Puppet

This version of the puppet is open-source and is free to use everywhere. Users can even modify and customize it according to their requirements. It can be good enough if the person is a master of the puppet.

  • Puppet Enterprise

There is an enterprise version of the puppet if your business needs some advanced controls. It is a commercial version that has many more features than the open-source version. Its features include API, GUI, role-based control, better scalability, and better user interface.

Why Use the Puppet?

With time, all the big organizations are getting decentralized and complex. The team of system administration that is overlooking and maintaining all the IT infrastructure like servers and data centers, they will eventually reach their critical point. Because IT needs and resources are exceeding, and it is not an easy task to take care of something this big.

It is the time when the puppet enters. With advanced automation, it can help small teams accomplish big tasks. Updating the data centers and servers is a matter of seconds with the puppet. It also keeps verifying the configurations after a certain amount of time. Well, we are offering training for the puppet you join it if you want to learn more.

Puppet Architecture

The architecture of puppet technology is developed on a master-slave basis, which is also called client-server. In which the client is the slave and server is the master.

  • Puppet Master

The role of a Puppet master is vital because it handles all the processes related to configuration, and it sends all of it to the nodes through the puppet agent. It is the one that runs on the servers and controls all the deployment process.

  • Puppet Slave

Puppet slave or agent is the middleman between the puppet master and the nodes. It runs on the client-server and does all the work.

  • Configuration Repository

It is the area where all the configurations and data related to it are stored. Any of these data can be retrieved at any time.

Special Features of Puppet

When we talk about the puppet being used with DevOps, there are a lot of features that stand it tall in the line. Let's discuss those features here, but if you want to explore more about the puppet and want to become an expert, we will recommend you to do a puppet certification.

  • Idempotency

It is one feature of the puppet, which makes it stand out when it comes to configuration management tools. This is the feature that lets you use the same configuration multiple times that too on the same machine. It also helps to update the machine in the long term.

  • Cross-Platform

There is this support in the puppet, Resource Abstraction Layer (RAL), that helps you targeting certain configuration systems.

  • Portable Infrastructure

With the help of the puppet, organizations can do the configuration management on their data centers and the public clouds.

  • Flexibility

There is enough flexibility provided by the puppet to match the right configuration with the right machine.

  • Scalability

Scalability is one feature of the puppet that helps organizations to grow because it fulfills all the requirements of infrastructure. It is much better than the manual approach of extending the resources when required.

What is Puppet Manifest?

All the programs of the puppet that are written in ruby to configure or manage any machine are called puppet manifest. It is with the help of manifest that users get access to all the resources. There are some components of manifest like file, resources, templates, nodes, and classes.

The main reason to develop manifest is to define the configuration of resources. All the resources and basic components of puppet code are declared in the manifest. We can call it the building block of large puppet modules like files and templates.

Conclusion

All the essential information that you needed to start with the puppet is here. Right now, the puppet is broadly used by organizations with extensive infrastructure. Its Master-Slave architecture is what's being beneficial for these organizations. The puppet has reduced the risk of system administrators with great support. That was all from our side, but f you need any information regarding the puppet, you can contact our experts.