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Salt Essentials by Thomas Hatch, Craig Sebenik

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Chapter 10. Brief Introduction to salt-cloud

Overview

This entire book has used examples running on virtualized systems. But the setup and install of those systems was a bit manual. More and more companies are using virtual machines to quickly introduce new applications and to expand existing ones. Hopefully, the advantages of virtual machines are evident. As powerful as they are, though, virtual machines still require an operating system to be installed and managed. This is where salt-cloud can help. It provides an abstraction layer that makes interacting with the different vendors easier.

There are several very large vendors that provide cloud services and a number of smaller ones. Amazon is one of the leaders in cloud services, offering a number of different services above and beyond basic virtual machines. In order to keep this chapter focused on the basics, we are going to focus on Amazon’s service, Amazon Web Services (AWS). The salt-cloud documentation has examples for many other providers.

We are going to assume some basic familiarity with AWS. There are numerous sites that can help you get started quickly. A simple web search should provide you with plenty of options to get your feet wet.

Setup: AWS and salt-cloud

The first thing we need to do is create a user specific to our new infrastructure. While using your existing credentials will work, it is advised that you keep your primary credentials to yourself. If you, for example, happen to check in your keys accidentally, ...

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