What is Ansible? – Important Things You Need To Know In 2021


if you are from a technical background then there is a high chance that you would experience difficulty in getting familiar with Ansible and working with it. Through this article on the Ansible Software, we aim at enhancing your skills and understanding of the concept and its various applications in today’s world.

  1. What is Ansible?
  2. Architecture
  3. Design Goals
  4. Ansible Fest 
  5. Ansible Integrations
  6. App Deployment
  7. Configuration Management
  8. Provisioning 

1) What is Ansible?

Ansible was developed by Michael Dehaan and was ultimately bought by Red Hat in 2015. It serves as an open source, agentless software which makes it easier to deploy applications more efficiently, provision software and configuring management. It makes use of its own distinctive language to analyze system configuration. It connects remotely via SSH or Windows Remote Management and runs in almost the same way for Unix like systems and microsoft windows.

2) Architecture

Unlike most softwares in role today, Ansible does not make use of a centralized controlling machine. Any device where Ansible is installed can make use of its capabilities and can leverage multiple files/directories at the same time by orchestrating different nodes. For sensible data, something known as the Ansible vault comes into play where the data can be stored in the form of encrypted files and inventories.

3) Design Goals 

  • Removal of additional and added workload on the device environment by making configuration easier
  • Improvement inconsistency 
  • Since Ansible is agentless and works on nodes, it tends to be safer 
  • Unparalleled reliability
  • Minimal skills and knowledge required to work with it

4) Ansible Fest 

Ansible fest is an annual event of users and contributors.

  • 2016 – London
  • 2016 – San Francisco 
  • 2017 – London 
  • 2018 – Austin, Texas 
  • 2019 – Atlanta
  • 2020 – Virtual conference due to COVID – 19 restrictions

5) Ansible Integrations 

  • Security automation – standardize security tasks (narrowing down the actions taken on a similar group of devices and technologies), automate security processes (end to end security activities with minimal manual intervention) and integrating the security and IT portfolios (consistency and stability in dealing with multiple security and IT technologies simultaneously).
  • Infrastructure automation – physical devices (cobbler, stacki, red hat satellite, cisco, juniper, arista, NetApp, pure storage and Hewlett Packard Enterprise), virtualization (VMware, red hat virtualization, Xenserver, Vagrant) and operating systems (Linux, Windows, UNIX, OS X, IBM z/OS, IBM power systems).
  • Network automation – security (storing network credentials), delegation (using RBAC – role-based access control), power (API), control (identifying jobs for automated playbook runs), flexibility (launch job templates), integrations (version control) and compliance (run jobs for audits).
  • Cloud support – servers and operating, cloud-native networking, virtual private networks, load balancers and autoscaling policies.
  • DevOps tools – Atlassian, datadog, chocolatey, sensu, Splunk, CyberArk, Dynatrace.

6) App Deployment 

  • Power of playbooks – repeatable and reliable (easy installations, upgrades and day to day management), simple to write and maintain, agentless (more secure, more performance and less effort).
  • Batteries included 
  • Zero downtime – updating applications in production without getting noticed by users 
  • Super flexible – ansible works efficiently with all types of workflows
  • Cloud ready 

7) Configuration Management

  • Accessible IT automation – extremely low learning curve for administrators, developers and IT managers.
  • Goal oriented, not scripted – avoiding the potential failures that arise due to errors in scripting and script based solutions is made easier with ansible that ultimately prevent irreversible mistakes.
  • Secure and agentless – low attack surface area 
  • Batteries included 

8) Provisioning 

  • Automating, configuring and managing all stages of an app cycle (provision – configure – manage – deploy)
  • Infrastructure platforms (baremetal, virtualized)
  • Networks – multi vendor environments 
  • Storage 
  • Cloud – public cloud and private cloud 
  • Self service with ansible tower (API)

After reading this article we hope you have a better understanding about the working, importance and the various aspects of the ansible software, we hope you are now familiar with the whole concept and will use it to develop and manage applications.


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