My First Ansible Control Action (Video)

With this short video, we continue our series based on Red Hat Knowledge Base articles exploring how to take advantage of Ansible Automation inside Red Hat CloudForms. This post is a follow-up of our previous My First Ansible Service article.

As a summary, what we do in this video is to create a control policy that checks if the VM CPU or memory size has changed, and if so, resets the size to 1 CPU and 1GB automatically.

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Review and Future Directions of CloudForms State-Machines

This article seeks to explain the use of State Machines in Red Hat CloudForms for the use in the flow control of automation.

The topic of State Machines is sometimes perceived as rocket science, barely used but often taught. The first thing to dispel is the complexity in state machines, then we can compare how a state machine differs from other process automation like Workflows.

Finally the article is to dispel the myth that State Machines are RUBY or if you use Ansible Automation Inside you do not need state machines, again not a true statement.

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My First Ansible Service (Video)

With this short video, we start a series based on Red Hat Knowledge Base articles exploring how to take advantage of Ansible automation inside Red Hat CloudForms.

In this first video we show:

  • How to enable Embedded Ansible in CloudForms
  • Set up a new Ansible GitHub repository
  • Create a new Service Catalog and Service Item
  • Provision and retire the new Service

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Announcing General Availability of Red Hat CloudForms 4.5

Today marks the general availability of Red Hat CloudForms 4.5, as announced in the recent Press Release. One of the key highlights of the release is the introduction of Ansible Automation Inside, which provides a simple, powerful, human readable automation language, directly accessible from within CloudForms.

In addition, several enhancements are added to the multi-cloud management platform, including a new storage provider for Amazon Web Services, metrics and container improvements for OpenShift, and additional features for OpenStack. Let’s take a look at some of these improvements.

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Using an Ansible Job Template in a CloudForms Service Bundle

This is part 5, the last post of our series on Ansible Tower Integration in Red Hat CloudForms.

As you saw from previous articles, Job Templates can be launched from CloudForms via Ansible Tower to run playbooks on targeted hosts. In particular we have looked at launching them from a button on a VM and from the CloudForms Service Catalog. In this last article, we examine how to expose Job Templates as Service Items to utilize them as part of a Service Bundle.

In this example, we reuse our ‘Deploy PostgreSQL’ Job Template to automate the installation and configuration of a PostgreSQL database on a newly provisioned VM. Our service bundle will deploy a new RHEL7 instance on Amazon EC2 and launch our Ansible Job Template to configure the database on this host.

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Publishing an Ansible Job Template as a Service in CloudForms

This is part 4 of our series on Ansible Tower Integration in Red Hat CloudForms.

In the previous article, we have seen how Ansible Job Templates can be launched from a VM button in CloudForms. In this article, we explore how Ansible Job Templates can be published as Catalog Items and made available for end user consumption from a CloudForms Service Catalog.

In this example, we use ec2_elb_lb, an Ansible core module, to demonstrate how we can easily extend the capabilities of CloudForms by re-using automation already provided by Ansible. In particular, we provide the ability to create an Amazon Elastic Load Balancer (ELB) from CloudForms Service Catalog without having to write any Ruby code.

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Launching our First Ansible Job Template on a VM in CloudForms

This is part 3 of our series on Ansible Tower Integration in Red Hat CloudForms.

In this article, we will explore how to use the Ansible Tower integration in CloudForms by configuring the launch of an Ansible Template Job on a click of a button from a VM.

In this example, we use an Ansible Job Template created based on a role found on the Ansible Galaxy role library. In particular, we installed on our Ansible Tower the sfromm.postgresql role dedicated to managing PostgreSQL. Our associated Ansible Playbook is available on GitHub.

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Configuration of an Ansible Tower provider in CloudForms

This is part 2 of our series on Ansible Tower Integration in Red Hat CloudForms.

As mentioned in our previous post, CloudForms 4.1 brings native integration capabilities with Ansible Tower. This post explores the Ansible Tower requirements as well as the configuration of the provider in CloudForms.

Like all providers within CloudForms, the Ansible Tower provider is agent-less and only requires connectivity and credentials to the Ansible Tower API.

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Introducing Ansible Tower Integration in CloudForms 4.1

Ansible Tower is a management tool designed to help automate infrastructure operations. Ansible Tower features management of host inventory, Ansible playbooks, access keys and passwords, as well as detailed reporting and audit of infrastructure deployments. Ansible Tower is designed for team-based infrastructure management, and as such, facilitates user’s involvement at different levels of the infrastructure operations. It enhances basic Ansible CLI operations with a visual overview of the infrastructure states and provides management workflows across the enterprise. Using Ansible Tower, users can schedule Ansible playbook runs and monitor current and historical results, allowing for troubleshooting or identification of issues before they occur.

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