PuppetConf 2014 – Day 5

I was pretty wiped out last night and slept in a little this morning, but I still got over to the conference in time to get some breakfast before heading in to this morning’s keynotes. The first speaker was Dan Spurling of Getty Images. He discussed how and why they’ve integrated puppet in to their environment, as well as some of his philosophy on development, operations, and getting everyone to play nice together. The second keynote was delivered by Alan Green of Sony Computer Entertainment America. He also talked about how they use Puppet, but he also discussed how they support the many internal groups and their extremely varied IT needs. After that, Luke came back on to do a Q&A session, which helped give us some more insight into what’s going on in the Puppet universe.

Once the keynotes were done, we headed out to our technical sessions. I started with an introduction to MCollective, which is an asynchronous, queue driven job management service that comes with Puppet. I’ve got some really good ideas on how this will be put to use on my customers’ systems. After that session was done it was time to go get some lunch. I had a little longer of a break, so I headed back to the hotel room to drop off some more exhibitor loot before returning to PuppetConf 2014 to grab some lunch and get ready for the afternoon sessions.

The first session of the afternoon was one that discussed OpenStack and how it can be managed with Puppet. It’s a pretty complex system, but there are modules out on the forge that make it pretty simple and painless to set up, configure, and run using Puppet. Next up was what was supposed to be a tour of Puppet subsystems but really turned in to an overview of part of the execution path of the Puppet agent and master code. It was interesting, but wasn’t really what I was hoping for. After that I headed over to catch a session about managing a multi-tier architecture using Puppet. It seemed like a good idea because we have a lot of that at our customers’ sites. And then there was the session put on by F5 Networks, covering their new REST API for managing their network gear. That is going to come in really useful, and considering you’ll be able to do just about everything you can do on the command line using REST calls, it’s going to rock! Our last session of the day covered Elasticsearch’s ELK platform, and was delivered by Jordan Sissel. This was a product stack that I didn’t know too much about before now, but after this presentation, I’m going to be spinning up a VM to try it out. It looks like it might be a good replacement for Splunk, with a bunch of extra functionality to boot.

It was a good way to close out the conference, and I made my way back to the hotel pretty brain fried from all of the information that has been crammed in to my head over the last 5 days. The conference was great, and I hope I get the opportunity to go to it again next year.