Day 54: Understanding Infrastructure as Code and Configuration Management (Jan 19, 2024)
In this blog, we will delve into Infrastructure as Code and Configuration Management, as well as explore the differences between the two.
🔶What's the difference?
In the cloud, Infrastructure as Code (IaC) and Configuration Management (CM) work together. IaC uses a model to manage things like networks, virtual computers, and load balancers. With an IaC model, you always get the same setup.
Configuration Management (CM) makes sure that a product's performance, function, and design stay the same throughout its life.
Read more about IaC and Config. Management Tools
Infrastructure as Code:
As the name suggests, code is used to create the infrastructure. This includes building servers, configuring tools, setting up environments, and more. Developers don't need to manually manage servers, database connections, operating systems, testing software feedback systems, storage, and so on. Also, tools remove the need to set up and prepare IT infrastructure for each new project.
Version control is essential for IaC, and your configuration files should be under source control like any other software source code file. Deploying your infrastructure as code means you can break your infrastructure into smaller parts that can be combined in different ways through automation.
Benefits of IaC:
Better infrastructure consistency
Prevent configuration drift
Configuration Management Tools:
Configuration management tools help administrators maintain system consistency, also known as configuration enforcement. This process ensures that new machines, software packages and updates are installed and configured according to the desired state. Consistent system components reduce support incidents, shorten IT problem resolution and help maintain compliance. CM tools also provide version control and change control to keep consistency across various IT sites. Popular open-source configuration management tools include Chef, Puppet and Ansible.
Configuration management software provides an accurate historical record of the system state, which is helpful for project management, auditing, and debugging. These tools increase efficiency and stability and visibility into changes that occur in an application and streamline a company’s change control process. These platforms also integrate with version control systems, software testing products, bug-tracking tools, and other software development tools.
Advantages of Configuration Management tools:
Automation of configuration policies and management for prompt remediation
Scalability with tools capable of onboarding an extensive infrastructure over time
Flexibility with varying tool capabilities and seamless integration into existing solutions
Cloud compatibility to meet the needs of multiple environments in a hybrid infrastructure
Protection against future risks with a system devoted to configuration policies
Give differences on both with suitable examples
The main difference between Infrastructure as Code (IaC) and Configuration Management (CM) is that IaC deals with managing and setting up infrastructure using code, while CM automates the setup and management of software applications, operating systems, and servers.
Infrastructure as Code (IaC) is a way to manage and set up IT infrastructure with code. IaC lets teams handle infrastructure in a repeatable, scalable, and automated way. With IaC, components like virtual machines, networks, and storage can be defined as code, which can be controlled, tested, and deployed like any other codebase.
Configuration Management (CM) is about automating the setup and management of software applications, operating systems, and servers. CM tools help teams automate software package installation and configuration, enforce security policies, and manage system settings.
While IaC focuses on the infrastructure layer, CM focuses on the application layer. However, both ideas work together to help teams automate and manage their IT infrastructure more efficiently.
What are most common IaC and Config management Tools?
Terraform - An open-source tool by HashiCorp that uses HCL (HashiCorp Configuration Language) to define infrastructure as code. It works with many cloud providers like AWS, Azure, and Google Cloud Platform.
Pulumi - An open-source tool that lets developers use familiar languages like Python, TypeScript, and Go to define infrastructure as code. It supports multiple cloud providers, including AWS, Azure, and Google Cloud Platform.
CloudFormation - An AWS service that uses JSON or YAML templates to define and deploy infrastructure resources. It can manage various resources, such as EC2 instances, S3 buckets, and VPCs.
Config. Management Tools:
Ansible - Ansible is a free automation tool for managing configurations, deployments, and orchestration. It uses a YAML-based language to define infrastructure and settings, and works with on-site or cloud infrastructure.
Chef - Chef is a free tool for managing configurations that uses a Ruby-based language to define and handle infrastructure settings. It has a client-server structure, with the client on the managed nodes and the server holding the configuration data.
Puppet - Puppet is a free tool for managing configurations that uses a clear language to define and handle infrastructure settings. It has a client-server structure, with the client on the managed nodes and the server holding the configuration data.