One tool to manage them all

 

I’ve been waiting to give the chef-client MSI a try ever since I noticed it had been released. I wanted to see if it really has made the numerous ( albeit fairly straight forward) steps to get chef-client working on Windows 2008 R2 that much easier.  After all the easier it becomes the more converts there will be as the barriers to adoption are removed.

Running the MSI is simple. It takes care of installing ruby( version 1.9.2p290)  and installing chef-client . Now all you need to do is set up a couple of files to allow your client to authenticate with your Chef server as detailed quite nicely here:

http://wiki.opscode.com/display/chef/Installing+Chef+Client+on+Windows

That’s it you’re good to go.  First impressions a big thumbs up.

I then had a quick look into how things have got better in the windows  recipe development  department. I started by checking out

The opscode supported  windows cookbook

This is looking really promising as the ability to install roles & features, and more importantly install MSI’s can be treated in the same way as you would install services and install packages  on Linux . Meaning you could actually have one person who is capable of  writing  high level recipes for both platforms. You will always need someone who understands the target O/S but this just means you can get admin staff using Chef  ( yeah I know I’m talking about the hosted version)  and it doesn’t really matter which O/S they are more comfortable with . Opscode in my  humble opinion have removed a layer of obstruction to adoption by the work they’ve done here.

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