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Pro Puppet (Expert's Voice in Open Source) [Paperback]

James Turnbull , Jeffrey McCune
3.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (14 customer reviews)

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Pro Puppet Pro Puppet 3.1 out of 5 stars (8)
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Book Description

May 3, 2011 1430230576 978-1430230571

Pro Puppet is an in-depth guide to installing, using, and developing the popular configuration management tool Puppet. The book is a comprehensive follow-up to the previous title Pulling Strings with Puppet. Puppet provides a way to automate everything from user management to server configuration. You'll learn how to create Puppet recipes, extend Puppet, and use Facter to gather configuration data from your servers.

Puppet is a must-have tool for system administrators, and Pro Puppet will teach you how to maximize its capabilities and customize it for your environment.

  • Install and configure Puppet to immediately start automating tasks and create reporting solutions
  • Learn insider tricks and techniques to better manage your infrastructure
  • Become a Puppet expert!

What you’ll learn

  • See how to install Puppet on a variety of platforms
  • Learn how to manage infrastructure with Puppet
  • Discover how to scale Puppet to suit small, medium, and large organizations
  • Learn how to integrate Puppet with other tools such as Cucumber and Nagios
  • Discover advanced Puppet techniques to make managing your environment easier
  • Learn how to develop and extend Puppet to suit your environment

Who this book is for

Systems administrators, implementers and systems integrators.

Table of Contents

  1. Getting Started with Puppet
  2. Building Hosts with Puppet
  3. Working with Environments
  4. Puppet Scalability
  5. Externalizing Puppet Configuration
  6. Exporting and Storing Configuration
  7. Puppet Consoles: Dashboard and The Foreman
  8. Tools and Integration
  9. Reporting with Puppet
  10. Extending Facter and Puppet
  11. Marionette Collective
  12. Working with Puppet

Frequently Bought Together

Pro Puppet (Expert's Voice in Open Source) + Puppet 2.7 Cookbook + Pulling Strings with Puppet: Configuration Management Made Easy (FirstPress)
Price for all three: $101.96

Buy the selected items together

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

James Turnbull is the author of five technical books about open source software and a longtime member of the open source community. James authored the first�and second books about Puppet, and works for Puppet Labs, running client services. James speaks regularly at conferences including OSCON,, FOSDEM, OpenSourceBridge, DevOpsDays and a number of others.�He is a past president of Linux Australia, has run and serves on the program committee of and OSCON.�James is Australian but currently lives in Portland, Oregon. His interests include cooking, wine, political theory, photojournalism, philosophy, and most recently the Portland Timbers association football team.

A bio is not available for this author.

Product Details

  • Series: Expert's Voice in Open Source
  • Paperback: 336 pages
  • Publisher: Apress (May 3, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1430230576
  • ISBN-13: 978-1430230571
  • Product Dimensions: 0.9 x 7.5 x 9.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.3 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (14 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #476,300 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

James Turnbull is the author of seven technical books about open source software and a long-time member of the open source community. James authored the first (and second!) books about Puppet and works for Docker as VP of Services. He was formerly VP of Engineering at Venmo and at Puppet Labs running Operations and Professional Services.

James speaks regularly at conferences including OSCON,, FOSDEM, OpenSourceBridge, DevOpsDays and a number of others. He is a past president of Linux Australia, a former committee member of Linux Victoria, was Treasurer for 2008, and serves on the program committee of and OSCON.

In his spare time his interests include cooking, wine, political theory, photojournalism, philosophy, poetry, and cats.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
20 of 21 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars One might also title it Pro Deployments May 20, 2011
Just finished reading Pro Puppet and I'm pretty impressed. If I were to summarize in a few short words I'd say this book could have easily been titled "Pro Deployments" as it really covers a whole host of tools that support Puppet and configuration management in general.

I am fairly new to puppet though I have a strong conceptual understanding of configuration management in general. Although puppet may be thought of as a tool to be used for very large environments, it can also be used to good advantage at smaller sites just for the versioning of your configs, and better testing.
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Good overview of puppet; poor book editing July 13, 2011
This is a great overview of Puppet software and the associated administration tools. I finished reading it on a flight from Orlando to Los Angeles, but the number of spelling mistakes and other editing errors I encountered irked me so much that I stopped marking them down. The editor should seriously have someone review the content again.

Other than the editing issues, I would give the book content four stars for touching on most of the features of puppet and how to integrate with other related software packages, such as mcollective. The author does point out many areas where puppet can be frustrating, but he recommends numerous methods to workaround such issues. The author goes on to talk about upcoming features in puppet 2.7 and beyond, so the content is forward-looking, even in the fast-paced community of puppet development.

I would recommend this book to those looking to gain mastery of puppet >= version 2.6.
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Excelent Content but could use some serious editing December 21, 2011
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I have really enjoyed the book so far, it has definitely made learning puppet a much nicer experience.

I would have given it 5 stars except that this book and the source code that goes with it, is replete with typos and poor grammatical structure.
There are several sections in the book that seem quite disjointed, like the author knew where he was going in his head but spaced out a paragraph here or there.
The scary part is that I am only to chapter 2.

Most of the code examples do not run as is and need editing.

IMHO, this is a beta version book, and was rushed out with great content but very little editing or review.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Love Puppet, Love the book May 29, 2011
This book is an excellent Puppet book for beginners and professionals alike.
I manage a software team and have read this book cover-to-cover in order to study Puppet for our team's use on a daily basis.

Despite step-by-step instructions for the initial installation, I needed some tinkering since different OSs have slightly different distributions, but once I had a server and agent running on two different VMs (Ubuntu) - there was an "Aha!" moment when the agent had emacs automatically installed on it! Getting past the initial installation phase allowed me to really enjoy the rest of the book as well as enjoy Puppet itself.

Puppet is not trivial, but the book covers its concepts very clearly and one "gets" it quite early on (especially if you get your hands dirty and follow along the examples).

The book then expertly guides the reader to its "pro" section detailing use of Puppet with configuration management tools such as git and db-based storage.

It then goes on to detail how to use AMQ with Puppet for scaling. I doubt I will use such a robust configuration, but was thrilled to see how flexible and extensible Puppet is by use of load-balancers and integration with Apache/Passenger.

Overall, the book is well written, and I would highly recommend it as a *text book* for Puppet. This is a readable text book on the subject - not a reference manual, although it has countless links to the reference manuals.

I always wanted to learn Puppet, and this book certainly is the one to read if you're dealing with configuration management whether as a developer or a DevOps person.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best single source July 27, 2012
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I've been through the official puppet training and I still learn from this book. It is the best single source introduction to some difficult concepts. I would have paid a fortune for it last year when I wrote most of my puppet code. Now I have to go back and refactor my code to fix all the design flaws this book has revealed.

Do yourself a favor and start here, you can just read the first 2-3 chapters to get a decent grasp of the correct way to proceed. Don't just muddle through with the online docs and no real idea of how to structure your code and modules like I did.

Only deficiency that I see is that the high availability docs do not fully support Puppet Enterprise but that probably reflects the state of the product when the book was written. Still a worthwhile book if you are using Puppet Enterprise like we are.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
1.0 out of 5 stars Poor Writing/Organization
Trying to get up to speed on Puppet for a new project to which I've been assigned. Found a copy of the book and am having a truly difficult time reading through it. Read more
Published 8 months ago by skykam
4.0 out of 5 stars Book Review
Great book lots of detail helped me get up to speed in no time. After some basics I was able to get a Puppet Master and Client working.
Published 9 months ago by Marcus
2.0 out of 5 stars Poor editing of OK content
This book was frustrating to read.

The high frequency of errors (in both the prose and the code, but mostly the code) makes it hard to focus on the content. Read more
Published 10 months ago by econerd4ever
4.0 out of 5 stars Great, but be aware of versions
This was a great book to take you to the next level with Puppet. My only negative statement is that there is a newer major version of puppet. Read more
Published 14 months ago by Koli
1.0 out of 5 stars Did anyone actually proofread or edit this book?
Yet another tech book that was rushed out the door before anyone (especially not a "disinterested" party) was allowed to read the manuscript. Read more
Published 15 months ago by M. Herzog
4.0 out of 5 stars Great book, lousy editing
James Turnbull has a deep mastery of the subject matter, and it shows throughout. However, with a product of this complexity like Puppet, the demands upon the editors and technical... Read more
Published 16 months ago by Magnus
3.0 out of 5 stars Broad in scope, not comprehensive
I had hoped for a more comprehensive coverage of puppet. The book is written well, and covers puppet topics across a broad spectrum of topics that will be of interest to very large... Read more
Published on June 1, 2012 by David G. Douthitt
5.0 out of 5 stars One heck of an introduction to Puppet!
This is a really good book that gets into an awful lot of the topics I need in my professional environment(s). Read more
Published on October 2, 2011 by RouxTheDay
5.0 out of 5 stars Pro Puppet
I just finished reading James Turnbull's excellent Pro Puppet. I am new to Puppet and while an elegant solution it does cover a broad landscape. Read more
Published on July 16, 2011 by Jonathan Craig
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I'd very much like this on kindle too..
Jun 9, 2011 by D. Braekhus |  See all 3 posts
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