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Puppet’s downtown Portland office. (Puppet Photo)

Puppet’s latest edition of its flagship infrastructure automation software includes additional support for Bolt, an open-source project that the company believes makes it easier for customers to move into the automation era.

Puppet Enterprise 2019.1, which will become generally available next week, will also enjoy additional support for YAML, the beloved and bemoaned data serialization language that is closely associated with the Kubernetes container-orchestration project, now that Bolt supports the language. The product is the Portland company’s first major release under new Puppet CEO Yvonne Wassenaar and since the departure of Omri Gazitt, Puppet’s chief product officer, in March.

“It shouldn’t be the vendor’s choice to say, you have to implement automation in this way using this language and using this particular technology direction,” said new Puppet head of product Matt Waxman, in an interview with GeekWire. “That’s how we have rebuilt Puppet Enterprise” as part of an ongoing project dating back to last year, he said.

The new version will provide a better way of dealing with both agent and agentless workflows, Waxman said. Some applications use agents, small bits of software that report back to a central server, to monitor performance and security, while others use an “agentless” structure more common in cloud computing deployments that monitor those developments through an API (application programing interface).

Matt Waxman, head of product, Puppet (Puppet Photo)

It will also provide better hooks into Bolt, an open-source project developed by Puppet that is somewhat akin to training wheels for Puppet Enterprise. Individual operations engineers can use Bolt to help them automate server and network configuration tasks, but as a company scales they need some of the additional bells and whistles available in Puppet Enterprise, Waxman said.

In addition, the new version of Bolt and Puppet Enterprise allows users to employ their YAML skills to automate infrastructure maintenance tasks, Waxman said. “What we’re seeing is that there are development teams that are wanting to do automation tasks and do them very quickly, and for those teams, a more natural programming interface is to use something like YAML, and not have to go learn more of an operations oriented language like the Puppet language,” he said.

Puppet also improved the continuous delivery aspects of Puppet Enterprise, making it easier for customers to figure out how changes to their Puppet code will impact their infrastructure.

The new version will be generally available next week for companies that are using Puppet to manage on-premises infrastructure, and the cloud version delivered through Amazon Web Services’ OpsWorks service will follow later, Waxman said.

[Editor’s note: This post was updated to clarify that Bolt now supports YAML, and that Puppet Enterprise has new integrations with Bolt.]

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