Chef is a configuration oversight tool that maintains infrastructure by writing code instead of utilizing a manual procedure. This facilitates its easy automation, testing, and deployment. Chef comes with a Client-server architecture and is also compatible with various cloud platforms such as Google Cloud, AWS, and OpenStack. To have a better understanding of Chef, we shall first establish what configuration management means.
What is Configuration Management?
Here is an example to help us understand configuration management. Assume you’re a system engineer and you need to either update or set up an operating system or software on multiple systems in an organization in a day. While this can be executed manually, it may be marred by errors. In some cases, the software will crash while updating and you may not be in a position to go back to the previous version.
This is where configuration comes in to help solve such problems. Configuration management monitors and repairs all the hardware and software-based data in an organization. Further, it sets up and updates the application complete with its automated processes.
Configuration management executes the task of numerous system developers and administrators who oversee numerous applications and servers. Some mediums used in configuration management include Puppet, Chef, Ansible, SaltStack, and CF Engine.
Why Choose Chef?
Assume you’ve moved your office to a different region and need your system administrator to install, update, and configure the software on multiple systems within a day. Should your system administrator execute the task manually chances are that some software won’t function appropriately, and it’ll be filled with human error.
This is where you should utilize Chef, a robust automated tool that converts infrastructure into code. Chef can automate an applied set up, distribution, and management across the network whether you’re operating it on hybrid or cloud. You can utilize Chef to accelerate the distribution of an application.
Chef is an excellent tool for speeding up software delivery. The speed of software development can be described as how fast the software can be adjusted in response to requirements and circumstances.
What are the Benefits of Chef?
Speeding up of Software Delivery
When you automate your infrastructure, all software needs such as creating new environments for software distribution and testing become swift.
Increased Service Resiliency
Automating infrastructure prepares it to be on the lookout for errors and bugs and controls them before they occur. Automated infrastructure is can also recover errors fast and with ease.
Chef cuts down risk and enhances compliance at all deployment stages. It lowers conflict in the evolution and production environment.
Chef can be adapted to a cloud environment with ease and the infrastructure and servers can be automatically set up, installed, and managed by Chef.
Managing Cloud Environments and Data Centers
Chef can operate on multiple platforms. Under Chef, you’re able to control all your on-premise and cloud platforms including servers.
Streamlined IT operation and Workflow
Chef creates a way for constant deployment beginning from development to testing, delivery, overseeing, and troubleshooting.
Features of Chef
- Manage multiple servers with a few employees
- It maintains a draft of the whole infrastructure
- It offers centralized management. This means that a single server can be utilized as the hub of distributing the policies
- You can easily manage it with operating systems such as Windows, Linux, and FreeBSD
- It’s compatible with all major cloud service providers
Pros of Chef
- It’s one of the most flexible solutions for middleware management and OS
- It offers Saas and hybrid solutions for Chef Servers
- It’s specially designed for programmers
- It can be executed sequentially
- Its reliable, stable, and mature especially for huge deployments both in private and public environments.
- The initial configuration process can be complex
- It’s push deficient meaning that there are no immediate actions following change. The pull process follows a defined schedule.
- It involves a steep learning curve
How does Chef Work?
Chef comprises of three components: workstations, Chef Server, and Nodes. The Chef server is the hub for all operations and its where changes are reserved. Nodes are machines managed by Chef. users can interact with chef server and chef through Chef Workstation. Knife and Chef Command-line tools are utilized for interacting with Chef Server.
Chef Node is a cloud or virtual machine that’s supervised by chef. Each node is set up with Chef Client. Chef server reserves all parts of the setup and ensures that all the components are in the appropriate place and functioning accordingly.
Here are some of the courses you’ll cover in a Chef automation class.
Chef Essentials: Mastering the Basics of Config Management
This course will take you through the basics of Chef such as writing recipes and cookbooks, how to install the Chef Development Kit, how to evaluate your recipes locally, and how to utilize recipe sub-components. This course incorporates simple examples and reference materials specially designed to help you develop a robust foundation of Chef and configuration management knowledge.
While this course is executed in video lecture format it incorporates quizzes to test students and practical projects to develop an actual-world experience. Accomplishing Chef essentials takes approximately a week depending on how much time you dedicate to the course per day. It’s divided into two main sections. A Deep Divine section and an Overview section. The Deep Dive section consists of physical labs and lecturers to teach learners about: recipes, cookbooks, attributes, templates, troubleshooting, and libraries. The Overview section is designed to display the competence of Chef, illustrate Chef-centric terminology, and illustrate fundamental concepts.
This course is designed for you if you’re a novice in the IT sector. However, you’ll need some basic experience in Linux system administration. You’ll also need to be passionate about automation. Formal programming or development experience is not required.
- Utilize cookbooks and recipes to automate server configuration
- Understand Chef concepts and terminology
- Use Erubis templates for setting up applications and servers
- Understand configuration management approaches such as idempotence
- Understand precedence and apply attributes
Chef for the Absolute Beginners – DevOps
This course will introduce a DevOps beginner to the basics of Chef with easy to execute practical exercises that they can practice from their browsers. The course covers basic Chef use cases and an introduction to Chef resources, cookbooks, recipes, roles, run lists, and Ohai.
Each lecture comes with a set of lab and coding exercises enabling users to gain experience in developing Chef node. Learners will be given the assignment to test their knowledge. This course is designed for total beginners in automation, those with no scripting knowledge, and learners who wish to automate without coding.
- Understand Chef language
- Use Chef to automate daily repetitive tasks in your environment
- Use Chef Console to manage Automation
- Configure Chef on Cloud environments such as AWS
Chef Fundamentals: A Recipe for Automating Infrastructure
Before taking this course, learners will need some experience in writing code. You’ll also need to understand how to utilize a command-line text editor, Emacs, like Vi, or Nano in file editing. Further, learners will need a basic experience of system administration such as the meaning of installation and configuration of start services and packages.
The Chef fundamentals class will tackle the basics of infrastructure as code. Begin by learning about Chef architecture and the tools incorporated in the ChefDK (Chef Development Kit) You’ll then learn how to utilize a Chef Server to distribute your cookbooks to multiple servers while pushing your application to production.
This course is designed for DevOps engineers who are interested in using Chef to learn Configuration Management. Development and operations personnel who want to become DevOps engineers can also take this course.
- Describe the execution of configuration management with Chef
- Understand Chef’s core components, terminology, architecture, and become conversant with the popularly used tools
- Become technically savvy in the installation and configuration of servers in an on-premise data center and the cloud
- Use and describe Chef terms such as resources, cookbooks, recipes, roles, the Chef server, data bags, and environments
Learn And Understand Chef: The Complete Guide
This course is designed for software developers, web developers, programmers, and anybody interested in Chef. the course takes learners on a comprehensive tour of Chef’s functionality ranging from advanced development to its core features.
- Install all the Chef components
- Get conversant with the Chef ecosystem and its affiliated components
- Use Chef to model your infrastructure
- Learn how to develop custom Ohai
- Extend the functionalities of Chef
- Use Test Kitchen to test your cookbooks
- Explore different aspects of the Chef API
Are you searching for the best courses to help you learn everything about Chef Automation? Choose one of the courses described above depending on your needs.