15 August 2020

Rundeck - centralized script management, automation of IT tasks and ranbooks

Rundeck is an open source solution for runbook automation (a ranbook is a collection of routine procedures and operations performed by a system administrator or operator) that allows a company to centralize and automate the launch of commands, scripts, applications.

By automating routine tasks, the company takes operations to a new level: operations as a service. In your day-to-day work, Rundeck can help alleviate lengthy and repetitive tasks that take up too much of your team’s time. For technical support, Rundeck can help reduce the number of incidents and the time to resolve them, as well as reduce the number of escalations.

Rundeck makes it easy and simple to create workflows from any existing tool or script: bash / PowerShell and other scripts, ansible playbook, and more. Run Rundeck jobs
from the web interface, API, CLI, or on a schedule. Rundeck’s access control features make it easy to securely delegate the execution of IT tasks and scripts to those who
are not traditionally involved in operations, and built-in auditing will allow you to control all activities in the system.

The Rundeck project spun off from ControlTier in 2010. Gradually, almost all active participants moved to Rundeck. It differs from its parent in remarkable
integration with platforms such as Amazon EC2, Azure, Chef, Ansible, Git, Jenkins, Nexus, Puppet, Vagrant, VMware, Docker, k8s. Rundeck brings together disparate
controls that were previously difficult. For example, you can take server information from your Amazon EC2 account and deploy services to them via Chef / Ansible.
The launch takes place using the built-in Rundeck utilities that unite fundamentally different platforms.

Tasks are combined into groups, and those form projects. The execution of tasks can be configured in parallel or one by one, connecting certain servers according to the script.
You can receive notification of results by email or via Web hook at a given URL.

The self-service portal for IT tasks and scripts should only be accessible to those who have been given such authority.
Rundeck is fine with that. Granular rights management allows you to customize access for a specific task or project.
User authentication is implemented at the highest level through integration with LDAP / AD.

By default, SSH with key / password authentication and PowerShell are used to communicate with servers.
But other mechanisms are also supported, and it is also possible to write your own plugins.

You will quickly see how powerful administration tool Rundeck