Review - Puppet 3 Beginner's Guide

I got Puppet 3 Beginner's Guide as I wanted to learn some of the open source configuration management tools. I do not really like Ruby, so i thought a beginners guide could be more suitable for me. In summary i think the book is pretty good and i think it is a good read for puppet noobs like myself :)

The thing i really liked about the book was the no-nonsense approach. I liked the examples and i think explanations were quite detailed and right to the point. Book is really focused and there is no waffling of any sort.

I actually went through some of the examples in the book and implemented them to see how it all works and if it works. I did not hit any road blockers so i assume book does not contain errors and manages to explain things pretty well.

The only issue i had with the book is that it does not cover remote server management. I am not sure if using git to periodically pull configuration changes and apply them on "random" schedule is the best idea. I was hoping to learn about puppet master and more detailed control over the servers. If i was to redeploy my servers i dont want the deployment process to impact my customers in any way so i would prefer a synchronized deployment model where you take servers out of rotation (from load balancer or virtual ip) and upgrade them in batches or one after another.

Something that i might have missed is how does puppet actually apply changes and how does it treat failures. Book does not explain that and i would feel better knowing if changes are rolled back in case of errors or how can you make the puppet apply process more robust and failure tolerant.

Finally i wish book covered some best practices on how to structure your deployments to guard yourself from common mistakes. I am sure there are many pitfalls as configuration management and software dependencies are pretty tough problems.

In general, I liked the book and I am happy to recommend it to anyone who wants to learn basics of puppet. I have not seen puppet before checking out the book and I got off the ground in a matter of one weekend. I think that is a good result.

Final score 8/10

Comments

Post new comment

Image CAPTCHA

About the author

Artur Ejsmont

Hi, my name is Artur Ejsmont,
welcome to my blog. I am a passionate software engineer living in Sydney and working for Yahoo!

Web Scalability for Startup Engineers

If you are into technology, you can order my book Web Scalability for Startup Engineers on Amazon. I would love to hear what are your thoughts so please feel free to drop me a line or leave a comment.

Follow my RSS