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Puppet, Chef or Ansible: Comparison of Popular Configuration Management Tools

Even in a time when configuration management tools have become essential rather than optional, companies are still doubtful about investing in one. In simple terms, Configuration management tools help you in automating the application of configuration states and saves the IT teams time. They reduce update errors, enable server audits and lay a strong foundation for scaling up. But the major reason why you need a configuration management tool is simple: To spend your valuable time on higher level things. A great many configuration management tools are available in the market like Puppet, Chef, Saltstack, Fabric and Ansible. We are going to compare three widely popular and upgraded tools in this article: Puppet, Chef and Ansible.

Puppet: Efficient System Configuration Automation

Puppet is an enterprise level configuration management tool that also offers an open source version with limited features. Capable of running on both UNIX and Windows, Puppet incorporates its own explanatory dialect to portray framework arrangement. Puppet, on a very basic level, makes it conceivable to share, test and implement changes over a server farm while guaranteeing to be perceptible and demonstrating consistency. But for advanced tasks, you will need to use the CLI, which is Ruby-based and hence Ruby is compulsory. It requires comparatively more resources than the other two in the list, as third party tools like MCollective are used to achieve additional functionality. Puppet is best used for system configuration automation and is trusted by a great number of customers.

Chef: Trusted for Infrastructure and Application Automation

Chef is a trusted tool for infrastructure and application automation. Written in Ruby DSL and Erlang, it also offers an open source solution, but with more features than Puppet. It gives broad libraries to working up a foundation that can be sent inside a product venture. It gives a Ruby-based DSL display framework, which empowers engineers and framework executives to assemble and plan adaptable situations without thinking about the working frameworks. It produces reliable, shareable and reusable segments. It utilizes less resources as most functionalities are built-in rather than using third party tools. Large and complicated code requirement often creates a problem while using Chef.

Ansible: Powerful in Python

Ansible, owned by Red Hat, is more up to date than other two and has picked up a considerable amount of popularity in recent times. The platform is composed in Python and enables clients to script commands in YAML as a basic programming worldview. Ansible offers numerous push models to send charge modules to hubs through SSH that are executed successively. Ansible doesn't require operators on each framework, and modules can live on any server. It is simple but DSL is a necessity unless deep expertise of the tool is obtained, which is a difficulty at times.

Which is the best: Puppet, Chef or Ansible?

All the three configuration management tools mentioned here are supported in all the platforms like Linux, Windows, AIX, OSX, Solaris, *BSD, HP-UX. Yet they differ in many aspects like, in scales, size of codes and the languages they are built in.

Which CM tool you choose will rely entirely on your requirements and inclinations. Chef and Puppet are kinds of the more established, more settled tools, making them useful for bigger ventures and conditions that esteem development and strength over stability. Ansible is a great alternative for those searching for quick and simple arrangements.