Oh, the fun things we can write!

boring text

So now we've used Puppet to manage a file on our computer. The /etc/motd file is now owned by root and has a fun little sentence in it. We can write all we want out to that file. But sooner or later, we're going to want to put something a little more interesting. Perhaps we'll want the hostname or operating system installed?

We'll take a little side trip first, though, and learn about $variables.

So what is this Puppet thing anyway?

Puppet Zero

So you keep hearing about this Puppet thing and how it's going to solve all of your DevOpsy configuration management problems. But what is it? How do you write a Puppet script? Well, as it turns out, the key concept is unlearning the habit of thinking about scripts. But all in good time. We'll get there. First, let's write some code.

Let's start out with something easy. You all know what the /etc/motd file is. It's the message of the day file that's dumped to your screen every time you log in.

Rapidly iterating training materials

The traditional development cycle for training courses, technical or otherwise, is a little different from the software development you may be used to. Think of all the artifacts in a typical training course. You probably get manuals to take home. There might be a few videos to watch. Instructors must be trained on the material. Labs and exercises must be designed and tested and tested again. Marketing assets must be generated and distributed. Facilities must be booked, along with any network requirements. If it sounds exhausting, that's because it is. That's why most training courses have a measured development cycle. A course is developed, proofread, tested, debugged, and then released. Put a fork in it, because it's done. Time to start again on the next course--scheduled for release in 6-8 months if you're lucky.

My Puppet Labs training is a little different. We move at a different cadence and might release three times in a week, if needed. Read on to find out why and how we manage this without losing our sanity.