CloudForms ships as an appliance as a means of greatly minimising the deployment and configuration required. Whilst this deployment method removes a substantial amount of complexity by shipping with all packages and configuration needed to get a working appliance in a very short time, it isn’t entirely without human intervention.
At a minimum you will need to:
- Set hostname and network configuration, particularly if you wish to use a static IP address.
- Create a new Virtual Management Database (VMDB) and associated Region, or join an existing one.
- Configure encryption keys, particularly if you are joining an existing region.
- Set up external authentication via IPA, if your deployment method calls for it.
- Start the EVM server processes.
These steps can all be performed using the appliance console that ships with the appliance. Unfortunately, this menu-based interface doesn’t lend itself to automation (unless you want to get your hands dirty with expect).
If you’ve got one or two appliances that’s not a big impost. But if you’ve got 5? 10? Then we start to look at Ansible and think “I wonder if I could automate this?”
Turns out, you can!