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Chef Automate (First 10 nodes free)

Chef | 1.8.85

Linux/Unix, CentOS 7.2 - 64-bit Amazon Machine Image (AMI)

Reviews from AWS Marketplace

18 AWS reviews

External reviews

46 reviews
from G2

External reviews are not included in the AWS star rating for the product.


    Mario C.

Automating deployment with Chef

  • April 13, 2016
  • Review provided by G2

What do you like best?
Chef is a standard in automated deployment. Is used in Facebook and it's really REALLY powerful. It's a very serious thing about deployment automation and it's capabilities are huge. Maintains states (software, configuration...) of the entire cluster, and I'm talking about hundreds of nodes. Cookbooks are very popular and you can find them to do almost everything in the open source community.
What do you dislike?
Chef is terribly complex to deploy by itself, not only needs a Chef Server that internally will install a RabbitMQ, a SQL database, a Nginx... it can really take a lot of resources of your machine.

Not only this, you need to install a daemon, Chef Client, on each Chef node you want to manage. Of course if this Client fails... your node is "lost" for Chef and you cannot manage it anymore until you restart the client.
What problems is the product solving and how is that benefiting you?
We were automating the installation of 8 to 10 linux packages over a set of 4 to 20 machines. We were using a "root" machine to start the installation and, using a web ui, let a user select a set of technologies to install them on the rest of the nodes.
Recommendations to others considering the product:
If you really, really need to manage a big set of nodes to do very complex things, you can give Chef a try (you also have Puppet). But if need something relatively simple I don't think is worth the effort. As I mention before, Chef is quite complex if you want to do simple things (maybe Ansible fits better in this case)


    Kevin V.

Great tool for system configuration management

  • April 07, 2016
  • Review verified by G2

What do you like best?
Chef is pretty solid for configuration management of Windows machines and ensuring that they are all setup and provisioned the same way. The setup and scripting of recipes is pretty extensive, and Windows support is solid. There are a variety of recipes to do most windows configuration needed, as well as Linux.
What do you dislike?
The setup is pretty complex, it can take awhile to just setup a server and figure out how to connect a client to it. It would be nice to have more functionality exposed in the Chef GUI, using command line for a majority of tasks can be tedious at times. Chef is mainly geared toward ensuring a server is configured properly, but it would be nice to have the option for 'one off' tasks. When you have agents already running on your systems for Chef it would be nice to run a task on a subset of machines instead of yet another agent and management system for that. It also runs best if you have a person dedicated to the configuration and on going maintenance of Chef. It takes some effort to keep up on your recipes.
What problems is the product solving and how is that benefiting you?
Chef solves the system configuration management issue pretty well, it is able to ensure that machines are setup similarly. The 'configuration as code' aspect makes it clear to the organization what is involved in setting up and configuration of a server. It helps to document the process as long as you follow through on continuously adding recipes as you move along.
Recommendations to others considering the product:
If you are using Azure, check out Microsoft's Azure lab on setting up Chef, it significantly speeds up the implementation process. Be sure to run through some tutorials and documentation on the Chef website as it is very difficult to setup straight out of the box. There aren't really any wizards or in-product tutorials.


    Todd P.

Chef is Awesome!

  • March 31, 2016
  • Review verified by G2

What do you like best?
The shear amount that you can do with the product from Linux to Windows, configurations to application deployments, Chef is delightfully AWESOME!!!!!
What do you dislike?
I personally don't have any dislikes for Chef as a product. The only caveat is when creating resources, you'll need to increase your Ruby knowledge and skills.
What problems is the product solving and how is that benefiting you?
When I jumped on the infrastructure as code bandwagon, I was testing both Chef and Puppet to Linux and Windows deployments. I chose Chef as they fixed a pending reboot issue with RDSH first. As a Solution/managed Service provider, the ability to reduce deployment time with a standard automated deployment methodology is invaluable.
Recommendations to others considering the product:
To learn Chef, I highly recommend using the http://learn.chef.io . Even for an OPs guy, Chef is awesome!


    Computer & Network Security

Chef is Infraestructure as a Code

  • March 10, 2016
  • Review verified by G2

What do you like best?
Not biased to said that everything from Opscode - Chef was well design, from their solo version to the Chef Provisioning module. You can write and deploy your whole infraestructure.
What do you dislike?
Chef Server Operation could give trouble as in performance issues.
What problems is the product solving and how is that benefiting you?
Infraestructure as Code. Continuos Delivering and Integration.
Recommendations to others considering the product:
Design well and do not forget to have clever metrics from your CI and CD workflow


    Liam B.

Chef is an excellent tool for Server Configuration

  • February 08, 2016
  • Review verified by G2

What do you like best?
I have been using Chef as it helps me to automate my applications in configuring and getting deployed in my web network easily.
It has got various features such as Chef Management console, Chef Analytics, and Client Reporting. It helps me to keep my server up all the time and saves up a lot of time in this area.
It also allows me to keep the track of my applications in terms of version control. So, the applications remains in synchronization with the help of different versions available for each built.
What do you dislike?
The setup document and tutorials could have been a little better. They have provided all the documentation in a single web page with no references to any external links.
What problems is the product solving and how is that benefiting you?
We are using it for the automation for our server configuration which saves a lot of time and energy required for manual configuration each time the server gets down. I like the Chef Development Kit where all the command line tools are available for help if you are stuck somewhere.
Recommendations to others considering the product:
I would recommend you to choose between the free version and the paid version of Chef as per your needs and requirements. Getting an initial demo from the team would be a good idea.


    Information Technology and Services

Powerful but Quirky

  • January 26, 2016
  • Review verified by G2

What do you like best?
* Keeps recipes in version control.
* Simple to modify system recipes
* Keeps systems in sync
What do you dislike?
* Can revert developer/administrator changes with little notice.
* Documentation can be out of date, suggesting commands that don't work with no clear suggestion for replacements.
* Individual node configuration is kept separate from recipes, not version controlled.
What problems is the product solving and how is that benefiting you?
* Keeps a variety of servers maintained with proper configuration.
* Propagates changes to many servers simply.
* Makes transferring server roles between hardware much simpler.


    M. Serhat D.

Made for DevOps and Easy Deployment

  • January 15, 2016
  • Review verified by G2

What do you like best?
Chef is one of my favorite tools lately. It makes painful and risky deployments easy and fast. Chef is also providing a quite flexible infrastructure which lets you to manage many nodes easily. You can simply integrate your other DevOps practices with Chef. It helps you to understand your infrastructure better and minifies security risks before your service goes down. Definetely Chef is a great tool to minimize your downtime. I'm a Ruby developer and Chef has a good support for both Ruby and Rails environments. Also Chef recipes written with Ruby, which is time saving for me.
What do you dislike?
Hosted and premium versions are more expensive than I can afford. Also management console, analytics and high availability features are not included in free version.
What problems is the product solving and how is that benefiting you?
Chef makes our deployments easy and efficient. In the past deployments were stressful and time-consuming for us and Chef helped us to deal with deployments. Also check and read about Puppet, Ansible, Capristano and other DevOps tools which you can use together with Chef.
Recommendations to others considering the product:
Before going with Chef, I suggest you to read well written documentation first and then check cookbooks for ready-to-use solutions before writing your own.


    Online Media

Best infrastructure as code tool!

  • January 13, 2016
  • Review verified by G2

What do you like best?
The DSL is ruby based, it makes sense, and there is a vibrant community that is very helpful.
What do you dislike?
Initial setup can be a bit confusing. Chef-solo, chef-client, chef-zero, etc. Managing cookbooks is also confusing until you set up berkshelf, which is a third-party tool.
What problems is the product solving and how is that benefiting you?
It solves the problem of having 'snowflake' servers - with Chef, every server is set up identically, which leads to a much more dependable environment. It also saves time when spinning up new machines.
Recommendations to others considering the product:
There are both free and paid options. Since chef 12, the enterprise and open source versions are very similar - but there are some paid options that are interesting, like analytics and chef delivery.


    Paul B.

Effective and smart way of config management, with a bit of a learning curve

  • January 11, 2016
  • Review provided by G2

What do you like best?
Once you get running with Chef it's a very useful tool for config management, and a huge step forward over traditional methods.
What do you dislike?
The learning curve can be a bit steep, there is plenty of terminology and patterns to wrap your head around. Once it clicks though it's easy enough to use.
What problems is the product solving and how is that benefiting you?
Used in the past to deploy and manage small - medium clusters.


    Nagarjuna Y.

Devops made easy

  • January 07, 2016
  • Review verified by G2

What do you like best?
Awesome documentation & training resources given by the Chef are easily understandable.I have used only the opensource and free versions of chef-solo (except for the trail period) in all the organisations I have worked with till now.I use chef in conjunction with vagrant to improve & automate the stuff in development life cycle.Librarian-chef is most useful bundler plugin for chef based infrastructure which one must try automates the things with simple commands.
What do you dislike?
They divided the Chef tool into three categories for the sake of business which is very disappointing
1. Hosted Chef
2. Enterprise (On-Premise Version)
3. Opensource Version which comes with less add-on and no support

Though there is a vast community present who are using chef for businesses it tuff to rely on opensource chef unless we have very experienced professionals.Pricing disappoints me a lot being a small organisation.Chef commitment to opensource is still doubtful which is an scary thing.
What problems is the product solving and how is that benefiting you?
Cloud Deployment, Build Automation, Server configuration Management
Recommendations to others considering the product:
Do you wanna save the amount of time managing server configuration for your systems? Then yes I would recommend Chef for you.For small organisation hire a experienced professional to save money that need to be spend on tech support while using chef otherwise train them to get expertise so that they can confidently manage your infrastructure.

Choosing Hosted chef is best option for the organization with newly trained staff which would save organisation from critical situations.