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puppet There are 6 posts in this category

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When you want to develop a new Puppet module, it's best to work outside of your production environment. You could use Puppet's built-in environments feature to slice up your site, but there are a handful of caveats and it's not always the most convenient. Enter Puppet Sandbox... Puppet Sandbox¬†is a multi-VM Vagrant-based Puppet development environment that can be used for creating and testing new modules independent from your production servers. It's also a great way to get your feet wet if you're new to the whole world of Puppet and automated configuration management software. While you could manually configure this type …

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As is probably obvious from our blog posts on Yubikey SSH/WordPress two factor authentication and Google Authenticator SSH two factor authentication, we at MNX Solutions are big proponents of multi-factor authentication schemes to add security to infrastructure. On the other side of things, though, we have to be agile system administrators in order to offer customers efficient and timely service when a problem occurs. While we still really enjoy our Yubikeys (especially for WordPress), we've found that the offering from Ann Arbor, MI based Duo Security is the one for us. Numerous Points of Integration Directly related to us, Duo easily integrates …

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A problem that Puppet administrators have likely noticed when deploying its built-in Nagios functionality (called Naginator) is that creating configuration is very easy but 'cleaning' old configuration isn't as straight-forward. If you are like me, you'd delete the affected file(s) that had cruft and let Puppet re-build the service configuration without the old services or hosts. This is both a tedious and terrible practice but out of the box it seems like "the way to do it". Having tired of the problem I was able to find out a proper way to handle the situation. If you add the following block …

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To help the community deploy software that we actively use here at MNX Solutions, we've decided to create a public yum repository for packages that are generally found spread across many separate repositories. By organizing these open-source offerings in one location, we hope that people will be more inclined to deploy great technologies such as Puppet, Puppet Dashboard, mCollective, and Foreman. If your environment plans to deploy Puppet or already is utilizing it, you can also look at various modules that we've published on Github. To add our repository to your yum repository set, execute the following: [code] echo > /etc/yum.repos.d/mnxsolutions.repo << "EOF" name=MNX Solutions …

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In the second part of our series on great tools to help with infrastructure management, we are going to talk about mCollective (Marionette-Collective). This project was recently acquired by Puppet Labs and helps to sensibly manage day-to-day system administrator tasks with an RPC framework. With so many people trying to write complex SSH for-loops to handle tasks that should be treated more elegantly, mCollective can offer what a system administrator has been missing: consistency! Pulling Strings with Ease By using an RPC framework, mCollective stands apart from 'mass-host-execution' programs or scripts. Plugin creation for mCollective is written in Ruby, leveraging base frameworks …

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This blog series will showcase some of the better technologies that we implement for our customers to create a truly scalable, fault-tolerant, easily managed, and well configured infrastructure. A challenge of any system administration team is to not only ensure that applications are working as expected, but deploying them in a way that consistency is kept and nothing is ever in an 'unexpected state'. Our first post will be about Puppet, a configuration management application that will help once again give sanity and continuity to your vital infrastructure. Update: Part 2 is now available. Puppet Configuration Management All too often an employee will …

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