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FOSDEM'14: Configuration Management in an Enterprise Linux Team


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About a year ago I accepted a new job in an enterprise Linux environment, running ~450 Linux servers. These servers were running on an internal network and had never been updated. Most work was done ad-hoc and in response to issues or failure.

I transformed the team to a pro-active way of working where automation was key. By solving the most frequent problems first, we found the time to automate more and more. Every server was updated and configuration management was introduced.

One interesting year later I've automated myself out of my job. The team can easily handle the (now much lighter) workload without me. Users are happy, so mission completed!

Configuration management is done using CFEngine 3 and we use other DevOps style tools like Git and Vagrant.

In this talk I'll talk about the journey we took and answer:

- What was the problem with the old way of working?
- How did we implement configuration management in an already running environment?
- Why did we choose CFEngine 3?
- What is the new way of working?
- What are the lessons learned?
- How to automate yourself out of your job?

The presentation will also focus on the process of getting there and the lessons learned, so others can benefit.

The presentation was given in the FOSDEM Configuration Management devroom at February 1st 2014 @12:00

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FOSDEM'14: Configuration Management in an Enterprise Linux Team

  1. 1. agement ration Man ux Team se: Configu erprise Lin Use ca in an ent How I automated job myself out of my FOSDEM’14 - Feb 1st, 2014 - Brussels @remibergsma
  2. 2. @remibergsma
  3. 3. Today’s story: 1 Use case with results. 2 How to do it yourself. @remibergsma
  4. 4. I am Remi Bergsma Engineer with a passion for automation. @remibergsma
  5. 5. Enterprise? Semi-government organization. @remibergsma
  6. 6. @remibergsma
  7. 7. users Too many of the same incidents. @remibergsma
  8. 8. To go from fire fighting prevention. to @remibergsma
  9. 9. The building blocks are Git, CFEngine3 and Vagrant. @remibergsma
  10. 10. Workflow Dev Beta PreProd Feature Feature @remibergsma Production
  11. 11. Git repository
  12. 12. Involve users, they look from a different perspective. @remibergsma
  13. 13. @remibergsma
  14. 14. users Significant drop in incidents. @remibergsma
  15. 15. Phase 1: WTF! Find out what problems to fix. @remibergsma
  16. 16. Phase 2: Save time by applying quick wins. @remibergsma
  17. 17. Phase 3: Implement configmgmt and build your baseline. @remibergsma
  18. 18. Phase 4: scale out up. @remibergsma and
  19. 19. Phase 5: Relax, you’re now in control. @remibergsma
  20. 20. “ automate Every 18 months, yourself out of your job ” --- Someone @Google, long time ago (Thanks Kris!) @remibergsma
  21. 21. Recap Replace manual work with configmgmt 1. WTF: Find out what to fix 2. Save time with quick wins 3. Setup configmgmt baseline 4. Scale out & scale up 5. Relax: full control! your code ys version Alwa @remibergsma
  22. 22. Whatever happens, use configmgmt. And please spread the word! @remibergsma
  23. 23. Get in touch! Follow me on Twitter I will post the slides soon. @remibergsma
  24. 24. Thank you! @remibergsma
  25. 25. Credits Changing permissions animation: http:// Fireman Sam Team: 63500102343_00.jpg Fireman Sam relax: 5905236905/sizes/l/ Kris Buytaert mentions the quote “Every 18 months, automate yourself out of your job” in his presentation: on slide 38. @remibergsma
  26. 26. License This work is licensed under a Creative Commons AttributionShareAlike 4.0 International License. @remibergsma