TALK: Tech Talk 0x08 - Configuration Management and the Death of System Administration
|Tech Talk 0x08 - Configuration Management and the Death of System Administration
Configuration management and the death of system administration (we have systems to do that now) presented by Luke Williams.
Being a sysadmin is hard work. You maintain complex, changing systems using an arcane library of command-line incantations to inspect and modify elaborate configurations. Quick fixes congeal into messes of dirty undocumented hacks. Repetitive tasks are traditionally automated with scripts: sequences of commands where every line is a potential point of failure that can leave the system in an unknown state to be painstakingly resolved by hand.
Configuration management (CM) takes the mystery out of system administration. Instead of explicitly listing steps that (hopefully)result in the desired system state, a high-level description of the desired state is processed by the CM platform to determine the steps to reach it, using package adapters to reason about the current system state and generate commands to alter it.
In this talk I'll introduce Puppet, a mature configuration management platform with adapters for thousands of server applications, and Vagrant, an automatic VM provisioning tool that we can use with puppet to effortlessly spin up new environments. We'll see how a single command can rebuild an entire system, how version control makes rolling back to a previous state as simple as checking out a revision and how to use layering to avoid duplicating configuration information common to your servers.
If you'd like to follow along with your laptop, I'll be around the clubroom half an hour before the talk helping people get set up. Hope to see you there!
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