2012Q1 Grant Proposal: Cooking Perl with Chef

Category: Grants

Comments (12)

I like that this builds on an already successful project (Chef). David has a good track record of getting things done, which is a big plus.

Does this need any buy-in from the Chef developers, or can it stand on its own?

Also, why Chef and not Puppet or some other tool? Is there any agreement in the Perl community as to what the best choice is? FWIW, we've started using Puppet at my $DAY_JOB.

Overall, I think this looks like a useful project.

Definitely seems useful. Too often we in Perland are in a bubble and don't participate fully with outside non-perl projects.

My only nibble is like autarch, I wonder why Chef and not Puppet. In my experience Puppet is more popular and usage is on the rise.

My experience has been the opposite. Chef is more popular among the developers I've run into.

I'm hoping this happens. I'm just learning Chef and trying to automate the configuration of our Perl servers. I was probably going to end up writing some of this myself.

Chef is a Ruby-based tool.
Ruby breaks backward compatibility too often even with minor language version upgrade.

So, It's harder to maintain working language version across servers than do real sysadmin tasks.

I can't understand who use such unstable thing for tasks requiring robustness.

I think it's better to raise fund for Rex( http://rexify.org/ ) instead of Chef.
It's Perl's counterpart to Chef.

I have absolutely zero doubt that David will deliver what he promises. His track record in following through on what he starts is excellent.

As for the choice of tool, I'd also prefer to see puppet used as well, simply because $work uses it heavily. That being said, I believe that David's work on Chef would be valuable, not only standing on its own, but also as research and example on how other volunteers can build similar setups with other tools. His inclusion of documentation and learning material in the grant may go a long way towards sharing the design work.

I left a comment before, but it seems lost in the moderation queue, so I'll try again.

Re: Chef developer support -- no direct support needed. Their community cookbook site seems open to just about any reasonable contribution.

Re: Chef vs puppet -- I think this is like emacs-vs-vi. I looked at both and Chef fit my brain better. Support for standalone mode with Chef Solo also seems better than the equivalent with Puppet, which has nice properties that I won't go into here, but might blog about someday.

As Steffen said, I think the techniques/patterns I'm developing for Chef could be translated to Puppet by a reasonably skilled Puppet hacker.

I'd like to see better integration for Perl projects in such projects. Companies often want use the same tools for all applications they develop (no matter what language the application is written in). So I support this grant application!

I think it is very important to have such integration for Perl with multiple tools and I have seen what David is capable of so I am fully supporting this request.

IMHO integrating with Chef is a good first step but I'd like to see plans, e.g. a follow-up grant, either from David or from someone else, to create the integration with Puppet and Rex as well.

I am all for this. ... Assuming that some parts are built in a platform agnostic way.

What I would really love is a good interface to apt. I have tried to write a script to run immediately after installing a fresh Ubuntu. I finally gave up because I couldn't get useful information about what was installed, installable, which repositories were available, etc etc. That would be a great thing. Once that was running, I would be happy to incorporate it into Alien::Base or support its existence in some other installer mechanism.

Shoot, the above was meant for the CPAN::non post. Too many tabs fail I think. Sorry about that.

A huge +1 to this grant. It will be extremely useful in many contexts.

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