One of my favorite tools is Ansible. Ansible is a configuration management/Infrastructure as Code/Magic tool that allows you to do, well... pretty much anything you want. Feel like starting a service across 100 servers? Sure, no problem. Want to build a new environment? Easy. Want to build out an entire network? Done. Ansible Tower is the paid version of Ansible that allows you to manage endpoints easier and allows you to utilize a nice interface.
The first thing we are going to do is head over to RedHat’s site and download the trial of Ansible Tower.
There are 3 ways we can utilize Ansible Tower:
1) ISO and build it out
2) EC2 instance on AWS
3) Vagrant (vagrant is a heavily utilized way to spin up and down Dev environments quick. Fast and easy similar to Docker)
We will be going through step 1 this time around. After you sign up, you will receive an email with licensing information. For this demo, I will be using a RedHat VM. You can also use CentOS. Please ensure your Linux box is patched and has network connectivity for the next steps. Follow the link below to copy the link URL for the newest Ansible Tower package. On your VM, do the following:
Pro Tip: Put installations into your /tmp directly. That way if you forget to clean them out, they expire after 10 days.
```wget https://releases.ansible.com/ansible-tower/setup/ansible-tower-setup-latest.tar.gz``` (or whichever the latest version is that you see at the time)
```tar -xvf ansible-tower-setup-latest.tar.gz```
Within your unzipped Ansible tower folder, you will see an inventory file. This inventory file is what controls the setup of Ansible Tower. You will see sections for the DB, the console itself, and an admin password. In production, you of course want to be a password that meets your company's compliance requirements. For our purpose, we will just choose a random password.
You will see multiple lines running, which are the configurations of the playbook/bash script that kicked off the playbook.
Please Note: The full installation will take a while, so feel free to go grab a coffee or a beer (hey, it’s 5PM somewhere).
Once the installation is complete, you will be prompted with your Ansible page by going to http://yourprivateIP
SSH back into your server and run: awx-manage changepassword admin You will be prompted to change your password. Log into your Ansible host and you will be prompted to put in your license key that you were sent earlier in the directions.
And with a little sprinkle of magic, there you have it!