Chef Infra Sessions

Mise en place - Preparing your Organization for a Successful Chef Infra Journey

Speakers:

Justin Rivait, Infrastructure Engineer, CUNA Mutual Group

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The hardest part of integrating Chef Infra into an organization isn’t learning the technical aspect - it’s helping others to understand “The Why”, and to build a solid community of practitioners. Culinary students often learn the concept of “Mise en Place”, or “Everything in its Place”. From champions, to technical challenges - come learn from my organizations’ lessons that enabled us to scale Chef out, and the epics and features that would have helped us grow faster and become more successful earlier in our journey.

As organizations look to bring new tools in to increase the quality of their infrastructure and speed software delivery, it’s often engineers that identify what may be able to improve these processes. Generally what follows is a business case presented to leadership in order to secure funding, an initial purchase order, and then a discovery period for those engineers and their product or service owners on how to make the tool work well in their unique ecosystems. For many, it’s tempting to start automating and delivering right away - to just get something out there to show value. Often there is low hanging fruit that can be pointed to as a success story - but it’s the more complicated patterns that can slow adoption down. In order for real success to happen there must be a strong community and willingness to change the ways in which we work, as well as support from the bottom of the organization all the way to the business leaders that partner with IT. We can increase velocity and adoption of new tools and ideas by following the concept of “Mise en place”, or “Everything in its Place” by laying a solid foundation for Chef, or any other new tool or concept in our organizations to remove friction and make new ideas become successful realities.

Come learn how we developed a community of practitioners, built support for Chef, and laid the groundwork for Chef to not only survive, but to excel in our organization. In this talk we’ll share how to build a strong business case for Chef to garner support and build new champions. We’ll also cover some epics and features that we think are critical to the success of Chef in an organization. Finally, we’ll talk about some thoughts around removing friction from the development lifecycle for Chef Infra to make it easier to learn and use.

Chef Infra for Dummies: How SAP Ramps Up New Developers

Speakers:

Dan-Joe Lopez, DevOps CoE Global Lead, SAP

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Having trouble picking a talk? Not sure where to start? Are you new to Chef, configuration management, or automation in general? Are you looking for a quick intro to get you started? This talk is for you!

The SAP DevOps Center of Excellence is a global enablement team, helping our developer teams to adopt the DevOps culture and practices. We act as a knowledgebase on topics, technologies and best practices surrounding automation, continuous integration, continuous delivery, micro architecture, etc.

We often work with the development teams to create custom solutions and pipelines, most of which include some chef management. As we work with new development teams, or add members to our own team, we have to quickly ramp up their knowledge of Chef Infra.

In this talk, we’ll share with you how we ramp up knowledge in SAP to get our colleagues working with Chef fast and efficiently. You can expect to learn:

  • The basic concepts of declarative configuration management and how it differs from scripted automation.
  • Important terms you’ll hear at ChefConf.
  • The anatomy of a Chef cookbook.
  • The process of a Chef client execution.
  • How the Chef Infra Client and Server work together.
  • Where to find resources to expand your knowledge and get your questions answered.

JM Family’s Journey with Chef: The First Five Years

Speakers:

Steven O’Neill, JM Family, Cloud Engineer
Terry Arroyo, JM Family, Technical Architect

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Are you part of an enterprise that has recently started your automation journey or one that is a few years in? Starting 5 years ago, JM Family started with Chef and it has been a key tool to bootstrap our automation capabilities. Join us as we talk about our journey so far, the thrill of automation and the agony of emergent problems, and what we think we want to build on in the future.

In this session, Terry Arroyo and Steven O’Neill will present the evolution of JM Family’s automation workflows for Chef, including: cookbook development, provisioning Chef Infra, and application deployment. We will then highlight what we think are our opportunities to improve as we move forward.

Terraform & Chef: Better Together

Speakers:

Matt Ray, Regional Manager, Customer Architect APJ, Chef

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HashiCorp’s Terraform is a popular open-source Infrastructure as Code tool that allows us to quickly provision and manage infrastructure across the cloud. There are a wide variety of complementary integrations between Chef Infra, Habitat, and InSpec with Terraform that enhance the ease of managing infrastructure, applications, and compliance. This talk will dive into what’s available and provide live demos of the Terraform integrations working together as we discuss how these complementary technologies achieve the goals of Infrastructure as Code.

Chef Infra Server API - Care, Feeding and Use

Speakers:

Mark Gibbons, Senior Engineer II, Nordstrom

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Sometimes the knife command just isn’t what you want when interacting with the Chef server. Chef Manage is going away or gone. The Chef Infra Server API offers convenient access to the functions behind the knife commands. Web apps using the API can allow access to sensitive interfaces in a controlled manner.

Third Time’s a Charm: Introducing and Evolving a Chef Infra Implementation

Speakers:

Graham Davison

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This talk will follow a five-year journey with Chef Infra. We will start with its introduction to an existing on-premise infrastructure and scaling as the environment grew. As we scaled, we extended some of the Chef command-line tools to ease deployment.

Next, we will explore the successful and less successful approaches to moving into a hybrid cloud infrastructure in AWS. We built AMIs using Packer and Chef Infra, but ended up with forked cookbook implementations for on-premise and cloud environments.

Finally, we will explore a cloud-centric deployment integrating AWS features with Chef Infra and Chef InSpec, and adopting Policyfiles.

Is Effortless Effortless in Practice?

Speakers:

Yonathan Koren, DevOps Specialist, Indellient / ShuttleOps

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This talk begins with an overview of Chef Effortless’ debut in 2019 and the historical challenges stemming from Chef Infra which Effortless attempts to solve. This talk will recount a first-hand experience of an organization’s movement away from Chef Server to Chef Effortless inside their own datacenter, and how the gradual retirement of the datacenter’s Chef Server was met with challenges in regards to Secrets Management and Configuration Management. We will delve into why these challenges were encountered - because the organization was reliant on Encrypted Data Bag Items and environment-based Cookbook workflows, both features which disappear when moving to the Habitat-driven Chef Effortless model - and how these challenges were overcome.

Chef Plumbing: Prefabricating Success

Speakers:

Chad Larkin, DevOps Solution Architect, Early Warning

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Early Warning is a fintech that partners with many of the country’s largest banks. Given the evolving customer needs across the financial services industry, there has been an increased expectation for Early Warning to rapidly launch new product lines. However, legacy processes meant that requests for new Development Environments typically took 1 to 2 months to complete, often impeding progress in achieving ambitious goals. Using the tools provided by Chef, Early Warning developed a solution. In just a week using Chef Infra, Habitat, some domain-specific scripting, and the company’s CI/CD pipeline, Early Warning was able to prefabricate a path for new development projects that reduced time to start, build, and deploy from the month-plus timeframe down to an hour, a 98% improvement.

https://github.com/Early-Warning-Services/habitat-springboot-project-template

Automating Machine Identity

Speakers:

Carl Bourne, Venafi
Ryan Bonner, Indellient

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Learn how the Venafi Machine Identify platform can be used to fully automate the key and certificate lifecycle within Chef Infra, Habitat and ShuttleOps


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