Skip to main content

Perform remote installs using yaml runbooks

Project description


Installtool is a python based CLI utility for scripting "one-off" installs of software packages on Linux based servers. It is more light-weight then your typical CM tool like Puppet or Chef, but since it is agentless, it does borrow from the philosophy of Ansible. Unlike Ansible however, the programming model is more like assembly language, on the retro tip. The manifiest or runbook as it is called, is rendered in YAML and containes 4 basic sections:

hosts:                # Put a list of Hosts that the actions will be applied to
resources:            # These are files and instaln packages that live in BLOBDIR
actions:              # How to do the install
verify:               # verify that the install was successful

The hosts section specifys a list of Host entries. Each entry is a dict with the following fields:

    ip : <addr or fqdn>
    user : <userid>
    password : <string>  OR sshkey : { resource: <key_resource>}

The resources section contains resource definitions. It is a dictionary where the key is the resource name, and the value is a dict which contains various key-value pairs depending on the value of the mandatory key, type. For example:

  roguekey :
    type : key-object
    filename : "roguekey.pem"

Defines an ssh key resource which is contained in the file named "roguekey.pem". All files that are specified in this section are located in the path specified by the --blobdir option on the command line. If that option is missing, then the current working directory is assumed.

Here are the operands that will be used by instructions in the actions section of the following example:

resources:            # These are files and install packages that live in BLOBDIR
  hello :
    type : file-object
    filename : "hello.php"
    user : "root"
    mode : "755"
    destination : "/var/www/html/index.php"

  indexhtml :
    type : file-object
    filename : "index.html"
    user : "root"
    mode : "755"
    destination : "/var/www/html/index.html"

  htaccess :
    type : file-object
    filename : "htaccess"
    user : "root"
    mode : "700"
    destination : "/var/www/html/.htaccess"

The actions section consists of an array of arrays. Each individual array element in the actions array is an instruction. Instructions have a single operator and can be followed by zero or more operands. One way to look at this layout, is as an assembly language or microcode program. Here's a snippet of "code", that will install Apache, PHP, and load an index.php file into the Web server's html directory.

actions:              # How to do the install
  - [NOP]
  - [XEQ, "apt-get --yes update"]
  - [XEQ, "apt-get --yes install php5-common libapache2-mod-php5 php5-cli", timeout : 300]
  - [XFER, file-object: hello]
  - [XFER, file-object: htaccess]
  - [XREM, file-object: indexhtml]
  - [XEQ, "service apache2 restart"]
  - [END]

The XEQ operator MUST be followed by at least one operand, which is a string containing a bash shell command that will be executed on the remote host. There can also be some optional operands that control certain behavior (like timeout ) or provide resource identifiers which are how files in the BLOBDIR are referenced by the instructions. Here the resource identifiers of the XFER instructions, describe various files and where they should be loaded, the resource identifier of the XREM instruction, describes the path to a file that needs to be removed.

The verify section contains special instructions to verify the results of the operations performed in the actions section on each host specified in the hosts section. Currently, the only instruction that is available is a simple "health check":

CRL                 # operand is an http path, i.e. "/" will perform a GET on http://<host>/

There are two input components to the overall tool, a configuration file or runbook, composed in YAML and a "blob dir" which contains artifacts that will be transferred to the host to be configured based on descriptions found in the runbook under the resources section. A nifty feature of this tool is that you can provide a YAML answer-file to automate the installation of some 3rd party apps that insist on requiring human keyboard interaction.

This tool requires Python 3, the pexpect, yaml, json and inspect libraries.

usage: [-h] [--file FILE] [--blobdir BLOBDIR] [--debug]
                      [--quiet] [--verify] [--threads THREADS]
                      [--loglevel LOGLEVEL]

install a site via remote execution

optional arguments:
  -h, --help            show this help message and exit
  --file FILE, -f FILE  yaml config file
  --blobdir BLOBDIR, -b BLOBDIR
                        If present, directory to get deploy artifacts from
  --debug, -d           Enable various debugging output
  --quiet, -q           silence all output
  --verify, -v          Perform only the verification actions on the host list
  --threads THREADS, -t THREADS
                        perform host actions with M concurrent threads
  --loglevel LOGLEVEL, -l LOGLEVEL
                        Log Level, default is WARN

There are currently 5 "operators" available for use in the actions section :

NOP                   # Just send a \n to the session
XEQ                   # followed by a command to execute remotely
XREM                  # Remove a file from the remote hosts
XFER                  # Transfer a file to the remote host via scp
END                   # Don't expect any more "instructions"

To get a sense of how the tool works, take a look at phpinstall.yaml which will install Apache, PHP, and set an index.php file to display "Hello World!" when you browse to http://<host_name>/. The runbook gainstall.yaml together with the answer-file in the resources directory ga570-answers.yaml is an example of using the tool to install a third party app that requires human interaction, in this case, the GoAnywhere MFT.

The command -df phpinstall.yaml -b resources

Will perform the runbook phpinstall.yaml with verbose output utilizing resources that will be found in the directory resources

Enjoy and Deploy!

Project details

Download files

Download the file for your platform. If you're not sure which to choose, learn more about installing packages.

Files for installtool, version
Filename, size File type Python version Upload date Hashes
Filename, size installtool- (10.7 kB) File type Wheel Python version py3 Upload date Hashes View

Supported by

AWS AWS Cloud computing Datadog Datadog Monitoring DigiCert DigiCert EV certificate Facebook / Instagram Facebook / Instagram PSF Sponsor Fastly Fastly CDN Google Google Object Storage and Download Analytics Microsoft Microsoft PSF Sponsor Pingdom Pingdom Monitoring Salesforce Salesforce PSF Sponsor Sentry Sentry Error logging StatusPage StatusPage Status page