New level of automation with Ansible – RHD Blog

Ansible is a simple agent-less automation tool that has changed the world for the better. It has many use cases and wide adoption.
This article is going to demonstrate Ansible. The intention of this article is not to teach you the basics of Ansible, but to motivate you to learn it.

Shell has been the comfort zone of every single Linux sysadmin. This article claims that Ansible should become part of the comfort zone for automation beyond shell scripting. A claim I can agree to – I just started learning Ansible and I see place for it. 


  1. Tomi Engdahl says:

    A sysadmin’s guide to Ansible: How to simplify tasks

    There are many ways to automate common sysadmin tasks with Ansible. Here are several of them.

  2. Tomi Engdahl says:

    How to use Ansible to patch systems and install applications

    Save time doing updates with the Ansible IT automation engine.

  3. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Creating a load-balanced web service on cloud with Ansible

    Through a practical example, we will show how to automate creation of one of the most basic web services, with three instances of Apache as a backend and a load balancer as frontend. All this will be created directly on the Google Cloud Platform.

  4. Tomi Engdahl says:

    4 Ansible playbooks you should try

    Streamline and tighten automation processes in complex IT environments with these Ansible playbooks.

    Managing Kubernetes objects
    When you perform CRUD operations on Kubernetes objects, Ansible playbooks enable you to quickly and easily access the full range of Kubernetes APIs through the OpenShift Python client.

    Mitigate critical security concerns like Meltdown and Spectre
    In the first week of January, two flaws were announced: Meltdown and Spectre. Both involved the hardware at the heart of more or less every computing device on the planet

    While Meltdown and Spectre are not completely mitigated, the following playbook snippets show how to easily deploy the patches for Windows

    Integrating a CI/CD process with Jenkins
    Jenkins is a well-known tool for implementing CI/CD. Shell scripts are commonly used for provisioning environments or to deploy apps during the pipeline flow.

    Starting a service mesh with Istio
    With a cloud platform, developers must use microservices to architect for portability. Meanwhile, operators are managing extremely large hybrid and multi-cloud deployments. The service mesh with Istio lets you connect, secure, control, and observe services instead of developers through a dedicated infrastructure

  5. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Ansible Examples
    This repository contains examples and best practices for building Ansible Playbooks

  6. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Tutorial: Immutable infrastructure for Azure, using VSTS, Terraform, Packer and Ansible

  7. Tomi Engdahl says:

    4 Ansible playbooks you should try

    Streamline and tighten automation processes in complex IT environments with these Ansible playbooks

  8. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Yay! Ansible 2.7 has been released.

    There is a reboot module that should be useful when you need to update Linux, FreeBSD, OpenBSD kernel. Learn how to reboot a machine, wait for to come back. #sysadmin #DevOps

  9. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Manage your OpenStack cloud with Ansible: Day two operations

    Automate upgrades, backups, and scaling with Ansible playbooks.

    Managing an application on OpenStack presents a host of challenges for the system administrator, and finding ways to reduce complexity and produce consistency are key ingredients to achieving success. By using Ansible, an agentless IT automation technology, a system administrator can create Ansible playbooks that provide consistency and reduce complexity.

  10. Tomi Engdahl says:

    An introduction to Ansible Operators in Kubernetes

    The new Operator SDK makes it easy to create a Kubernetes controller to deploy and manage a service or application in a cluster.

  11. Tomi Engdahl says:

    How to run AWX on Minishift

    Put Ansible in a container using the Minishift container orchestrator.

    The upstream version of Red Hat’s Ansible Tower product is AWX. It’s a containerized solution, which means you need a container orchestrator to run and look after it. A neat local installation option is Minishift, which runs OKD, Red Hat’s version of Minikube, which makes it easier to run Kubernetes locally.

  12. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Testing Ansible roles with Molecule

    Learn how to automate your verifications using Python.

    Test techniques play an important role in software development, and this is no different when we are talking about Infrastructure as Code (IaC).

    Baby steps and fast feedback are the essence of TDD (test-driven development). But how do you apply this approach to the development of ad hoc playbooks or roles?

    When you’re developing an automation, a typical workflow would start with a new virtual machine. I will use Vagrant to illustrate this idea, but you could use libvirt, Docker, VirtualBox, or VMware, an instance in a private or public cloud, or a virtual machine provisioned in your data center hypervisor (oVirt, Xen, or VMware, for example).

    When tests are not automated, you’ll face issues similar to those when you do not automate your infrastructure.

    Luckily, tools like Testinfra and Goss can help automate these verifications.

    I will focus on Testinfra, as it is written in Python and is the default verifier for Molecule. The idea is pretty simple: Automate your verifications using Python

  13. Tomi Engdahl says:

    OpsMop: Config management and app deployment from the creator of Ansible #sysadmin #unix #macos #devops #sysadmin

  14. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Top 5 configuration management tools

    Learn about configuration management tools and figure out which will work best for your DevOps organization.

  15. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Maximize your Ansible skills with these 7 how-tos

    A collection of playbooks, guides, and tutorials to maximize your Ansible skills.

  16. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Automating deployment strategies with Ansible

    Use automation to eliminate time sinkholes due to repetitive tasks and unplanned work.

    In The Practice of System and Network Administration, the authors categorize the biggest “time sinkholes” in IT as manual/non-standard provisioning of OSes and application deployments. These time sinkholes will consume you with repetitive tasks or unplanned work.

    Incidents or unplanned work consume a lot of your time and, even worse, your greatest talents.

    What about manual deployment? Imagine 20 binaries deployed across a farm or nodes with their respective configuration files? How error-prone is this? Inevitably, it will eventually end up in unplanned work.

    The State of DevOps Report 2018 introduces the stages of DevOps adoption, and it’s no surprise that Stage 0 includes deployment automation and reuse of deployment patterns, while Stage 1 and 2 focus on standardization of your infrastructure stack to reduce inconsistencies across your environment.

    lack of automation not only increases your lead time but also the rate of problems in your process and the amount of unplanned work you face.

  17. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Ansible for the Windows admin

    Boost your efficiency by automating mundane tasks with Ansible for Windows, and learn a little about Linux and Ansible along the way.

  18. Tomi Engdahl says:

    A quickstart guide to Ansible
    Download the Ansible Automation for SysAdmins guide.

  19. Tomi Engdahl says:

    What you need to know about Ansible modules

    Learn how and when to develop custom modules for Ansible.

  20. Tomi Engdahl says:

    How to manage access control lists with Ansible

    Automating ACL management with Ansible’s ACL module is a smart way to strengthen your security strategy.

  21. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Using Testinfra with Ansible to verify server state

    Testinfra is a powerful library for writing tests to verify an infrastructure’s state. Coupled with Ansible and Nagios, it offers a simple solution to enforce infrastructure as code.

    By design, Ansible expresses the desired state of a machine to ensure that the content of an Ansible playbook or role is deployed to the targeted machines. But what if you need to make sure all the infrastructure changes are in Ansible? Or verify the state of a server at any time?

    Testinfra is an infrastructure testing framework that makes it easy to write unit tests to verify the state of a server. It is a Python library and uses the powerful pytest test engine.

  22. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Ansible as a gateway to DevOps in the cloud

    Eventually, Ansible became my gateway to the cloud. In this article, I’ll provide an introduction to DevOps with Ansible.

    the three pillars of DevOps:

    Source control
    The platform
    If you can get these three things working together, you’ll be a rockstar. The beauty of open source is that there are many different implementations of these pillars, and you’re free to choose whichever stack works best for you.

    For my experiment, I chose Git, Ansible, and Kubernetes.

    When a Git commit is made to the repo, a Git post-commit hook triggers an Ansible play to take advantage of the ReplicationController object in Kubernetes. The play tears down the existing application pod, forcing a rebuild of the container with the latest code. A cut-rate continuous integration/continuous deployment platform! It may not be enterprise-ready, but it’s great for a lab and learning about all this new technology.

    And I’m not done yet. Now I get to learn all about Jenkins and automated testing. Ansible continues to evolve as well.

  23. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Hardware bootstrapping with Ansible

    At a recent Ansible London Meetup, I got chatting with somebody about automated hardware builds. “It’s all cloud now!” I hear you say. Ah, but for many large organisations it’s not—they still have massive data centres full of hardware. Almost regularly somebody pops up on our internal mail list and asks, “can Ansible do hardware provisioning?” Well yes, you can provision hardware with Ansible…

    Bootstrapping hardware is mostly about network services. Before we do any operating system (OS) installing then, we must set up some services. We will need:

    D H C P
    P X E
    T F T P
    Operating system media
    Web server

    Usefully, Ansible has some remote management modules. We’re working with an HP server here, so we can use the hpilo_boot module to save us from having to interact directly with the LOM web interface.

  24. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Car2Go decided to stop requiring background checks, and it ended in disaster. People in Chicago used stolen credit cards to rent cars to joyride in and steal parts off the cars. People also used stolen email addresses and passwords to steal cars.

  25. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Automating with Red Hat Ansible Tower

    Red Hat Ansible Tower is a simple, agentless method for automating IT. Thousands of companies are using Ansible Tower to simplify their infrastructure and accelerate DevOps initiatives.

    The webinar will focus on the benefits and value of Ansible Tower.

  26. Tomi Engdahl says:

    A project manager’s guide to Ansible

    Ansible is best known for IT automation, but it can streamline operations across the entire organization.

  27. Tomi Engdahl says:

    How to navigate Ansible documentation

    Ansible’s documentation can be daunting. Here’s a tour that might help.

    Right from the start, Ansible boasts that it is simple, agentless, and that anyone can learn and be productive with it. Ansible makes it easy to do things like automate application deployments, configuration management, and orchestration. The hope and purpose of this article is to also show not only how to navigate Ansible documentation, but that it is straightforward and painless to apply.

  28. Tomi Engdahl says:

    10 Ansible modules you need to know
    See examples and learn the most important modules for automating everyday tasks with Ansible.

  29. Tomi Engdahl says:

    DNS configuration with Ansible
    The easiest way to learn Ansible automation is to dive in and give it a try.

  30. Tomi Engdahl says:

    How to check Ansible version on Linux/Unix

    Ansible is a free and open-source automation software that automates software provisioning, configuration management, and application deployment. It is written in Python. It works with SSH and no agent needed on the remote server.

  31. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Ansible is becoming a basic IT skill these days.

    This 20 minute intro covers a lot of ground to get started:

  32. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Ansible Playbooks for Beginners – Hands-On

    Ansible – Understanding YAML with Coding Exercises

  33. Tomi Engdahl says:
    Illustrated: Me using Ansible IT automation tool for new devices such as routers, switches, and Windows servers with trial and error method. Clip credit

  34. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Manage your Raspberry Pi fleet with Ansible
    A solution to the problem of updating difficult-to-reach Raspberry Pis in the enterprise.

  35. Tomi Engdahl says:

    //Keeping your box secure is an important task. Here is how to use the Ansible zypper update module for all packages on OpenSUSE/SUSE Linux and reboot the box if a new Linux kernel installed


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