Ansible Galaxy: Doin’ It Right

July 18, 2018 by Chris Houseknecht

Ansible-Galaxy-Blog-Post

Over the years many things have contributed to the success of Ansible, including the flexibility of the tool itself, and a vibrant community that has contributed nearly 1,700 modules to the Ansible project, and imported nearly 17,000 roles to Ansible Galaxy. Not sure where to start or need an example of how to automate a thing? There’s probably a module for that and a few roles on Galaxy to get you started. This is all thanks to the community!

Since its inception, the Galaxy website hasn’t really changed much. There’s been a few minor releases with bug fixes here and there, but nothing big and exciting. For much of its existence, Galaxy has been maintained by the community team to keep it humming along as an open hub for the publishing of shared Ansible roles. In this way, Galaxy helps to facilitate the community’s enthusiasm for sharing Ansible roles.

Now, we’re changing up the status quo, with some big, cool updates planned for Galaxy. The goal is to make it an even better place for the community and partners to find and share Ansible content. Today, the expanded and dedicated Galaxy team is pleased to announce the release of an all new Ansible Galaxy hub.

What's New:

  • Migrated to a new containerized infrastructure provided by Red Hat OpenShift Dedicated, giving us a more reliable and scalable platform to operate from, and enabling us to release bug fixes and enhancements more quickly
  • An improved user interface based on Patternfly 3.0 and the latest Angular javascript
  • Refactored and modernized the Galaxy server code, moving from ElasticSearch to Postgres full-text search, upgrading the underlying Django framework libraries and improving Python 3 compatibility
  • Improved data model ready to support the addition of more public source code management platforms and other content types
  • A tech-preview release of the next generation content manager tool for installing and managing Ansible content code named Mazer
  • A tech-preview of multi-role repositories. Yep, you can try it now using Mazer, and soon it will be a production-ready experience, delivering a collection of roles in a single source repository
  • Added hooks for static analysis of content as it’s imported into Galaxy -- we've begun basic YAML and python content checks
  • Made it easier to find the most popular content with results ranked using a “best match” score that combines filter matching with number of download counts
  • Expanded the Galaxy server and tool documentation and published them to their own dedicated site
  • We also added support for OpenShift Ansible Broker content, Ansible Playbook Bundles (APBs), on Galaxy

This release marks the start of our commitment to making Galaxy the place for finding and sharing great Ansible content from the community and partners. These changes all may not be easily perceived, but they are “big” and we’re really excited for the Ansible community to try them out. 

More Features to Come

We’re not stopping there. The Galaxy team is already busy working on new features and upcoming releases. Here’s some of the things you can expect to see over the coming months:

  • Continuing to improved the search result ranking and presentation to make it even easier to find the best content
  • Expand the static analysis and visually indicate the quality and status of new content when it is imported
  • Introduce versioned content that hosted on the public Galaxy server
  • Further enhance the content management features Mazer that includes the ability to do updates of versioned content
  • Full support for multiple roles delivered in a single repository
  • Begin to introduce metrics collection and analytics to understand and display content usage patterns


Yep, that’s an ambitious list, but we want to keep making Galaxy even better!

Please share your feedback with us as you try out the new release of the Ansible Galaxy hub. To file an issue, visit the ansible/galaxy or ansible/mazer GitHub projects or reach out to us directly on IRC in the freenode.net, #ansible-galaxy channel.

Oh and in case you were wondering, releases of Ansible Galaxy v3 are going to be named after Daft Punk tracks. This release was “Doin’ It Right” and look forward to our next release: “Harder, Better, Faster, Stronger.”

 

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Topics:
Ansible, Ansible Galaxy


 

Chris Houseknecht

Chris is the Principal Engineer, Ansible, Red Hat. Starting as employee number five, Chris keeps watch over Ansible Docker modules, maintains Ansible Galaxy and is the lead Engineer for Ansible Container. When he’s not working he spends his time cooking, walking his dogs or outside on his mountain bike or motorcycle. He can be found on twitter at @chouseknecht.


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