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Should you use Puppet or Ansible for your automation?

Which tool to use?

As your environment grows, the need for automation and tools to manage that environment become all the more necessary. If you are using Linux, a common question is "Should I use puppet or ansible?". Some proper planning early on can save you quite a lot of trouble later!

Don't forget, that the way your environment is laid out now is not necessarily the way it will be in the future. You need to plan the ability to grow it later and architect things for security as well. I won't cover that in this posting, but it is something to keep in your mind as you are going along.

What's so great about Puppet?

Puppet has been around longer than Ansible and thus has more scripts and extensions. However the original web GUI for puppet (puppet-dashboard) is no longer being developed, and there is a community project called Foreman however my experience with it and other variants is that it is trickier to maintain and sometimes harder to setup. So if you have a strong scripting background you may want to choose Puppet.

What's so great about Ansible?

If you are new to automation, and don't have any experience with scripting Ansible is likely a better choice. It is arguably easier to get up and running than puppet and although it may not have as much extensions it is still very customize-able. Ansible doesn't have an agent, it uses SSH and runs commands. Note that puppet can also run arbitrary commands, you just have to code them into a module.

Which is best for you?

To really find out which is best for you, you should create a test environment and try both of them out. They function slightly differently in how they push updates out and the configuration is different.

Contact RDA for help

If you would like to hear how RDA can help you with your automation, contact us today!

Links

Managing Windows with Puppet
Ansible vs Puppet Overview

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