Puppet Enterprise Review

Versatile and stable with a simple configuration management profile

What is our primary use case?

Our use case is provisioning and then configuration management for on-prem servers primarily. We use it for applications as well. We were using Puppet for database configuration management. Basically,  we mainly use it for configuration management for on-prem servers of infrastructure and then use it a bit on the application side as well.

What is most valuable?

I like the way it keeps the configuration management profile simple. The programming in it is based on the stage-based coding in BYML, which is very comfortable for us to use. 

The organization of the overall product in terms of usage is very good. 

The number of modules available and the compatibility with a large number of devices makes it simple to use. It was very helpful in managing the server infrastructure on both Linux and Windows platforms, as well as on the network side on the Cisco switches. 

The versatility is great.

What needs improvement?

Puppet may be already working on this, however, it would be helpful if they made the product agent-less or making an option for agent-less. They may offer that in Puppet Bolt. I haven't explored that much. 

The compliance side needs work. Puppet doesn't have much in terms of dealing with compliance. Chef has inSpec. On Red Hat, we are getting Insight so that we can run some standard templates for compliance, like CIS or DSR, PCI, or something of that nature. We can use those templates to harden the environments and perform a security checklist within those environments.

There's a lot of scope for enhancement on the DevSecOps side. They should definitely include features for compliance, for both the Linux and Windows side of the devices, as well as for network devices. Compliance is something they need to work on.

It would be great if there was integration with some InfoSec tools like Lenovo.

The pricing of the solution is a bit high.

For how long have I used the solution?

I've been using the solution since about 2016.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

It's quite a quite stable product. I actually never had to reach out to Puppet for support, as the product itself is quite stable and it never reached a situation where we were unaware of what was happening and needed the help of technical support. For the last two or three years, it's been perfectly fine. It's pretty much customizable and very stable. It's very good.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

Scalability-wise, we tried going with the two nodes for high availability purposes. In terms of clients, as far as the endpoint, you can add as many as you want. The versatility is also good. You can have different types of endpoints from the app ranging from application to the network devices, to Linux servers, to Windows servers. Everything can be added on. It's good. The scalability is fine.

How are customer service and technical support?

We've never had any issues with the product, therefore we've never had to reach out to technical support. I can't speak to their level of responsiveness or knowledge, however, I can say, for us, the solution works fine without any issues that require support.

How was the initial setup?

The initial setup was not too complex. You need to have a good vision about how you want to implement it across the organization and the use cases. If you have that in place, then you can implement it with relative ease. The installation of it is straightforward, so you just need to follow the documentation and the steps.

What about the implementation team?

We didn't use an integrator or consultant. We handled the implementation ourselves.

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

The pricing is a bit on the higher side. It can be done more at a more reasonable rate. However,  that depends on the size of the environment we are dealing with and the best deal we can get after negotiation. The pricing is something they can work on to reduce a bit.

What other advice do I have?

We're just customers. We don't have a business relationship with Puppet.

I would recommend it to others who have large-scale environments. It's a very good product for that type of organization. For example, if you have 5,000 or 3,000 plus servers, it's definitely a go-to.

Overall, on a scale from one to ten, I'd rate the solution at an eight.

Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

Hybrid Cloud

If public cloud, private cloud, or hybrid cloud, which cloud provider do you use?

Amazon Web Services (AWS)
**Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
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