Getting Started with Puppet

Back at the Church IT Roundtable in October I began sharing about how we have implemented a Mac Management solution using Open Source Tools and I promised to provide tutorials on how to get started. I’ve spent the time rebuilding the Docker Container to automate the setup of a new Puppet Server because of some issues that my original container experiences on occasion. This post is going to cover the basics of getting Docker & Puppet up and running on a Ubuntu 14.

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Our path to Mac Management

Where we Started

“In the beginning God created…” the Mac… “and it was good”

Ok maybe I went a little far in that one. I came on staff at Real Life Church in 2012 and at that time we were mostly a PC shop with the exception being Pastors exclusively having a Mac (With Local Admin Access and no admin account for IT). Over the next 2 years we realized that we got significantly more support requests on our PCs than for our Macs. We were running on an aging SBS 2008 server that was maxed out on licensing and we were continuing to grow. After numerous conversations with my Director and leadership the decision was clear that we needed to make the transition to a 100% Mac shop in our church.


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Pi Cam Matrix v2

After a few days in production I discovered that over time the Pi’s would lose connection to the RTSP feeds. The only two ways to resolve this were to reboot the Pi or SSH into the Pi. Because of this I started back at the beginning and was able to develop another way of running this matrix that would automatically reload the RTSP feed if it was lost. The initial Pi Setup instructions are identical to my last post, Raspberry Pi Camera Matrix, the differences come in with setting up the new code base.

For those that are interested in how to make this happen here’s the instructions and code:

What you’ll need:

  • Raspberry Pi2 (I got the Canakit Raspberry Pi 2 - Complete Starter Kit off of Amazon, comes with everything you need for this project)
  • Unifi NVR Software running the most recent stable release
  • HDTV or Computer Monitor capable of 1080p
  • MicroSD to SD Card Adapter (Optional, only needed if you have to re-install raspbian)
  • Keyboard for initial setup


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Raspberry Pi Camera Matrix

I have posted version 2 of this script HERE Over the last few months we’ve been upgrading our Security Cameras, replacing a 10 year old vitek system with the Ubiquiti Unifi Video system. We just finished installing the last of these Cameras and that included the need to find a new solution for our Children’s Cameras to be displayed onto two TV’s. I found a Forum Post on the Ubiquiti Community that documented one person’s script to display a 2x2 Camera Matrix on a Raspberry Pi

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Welcome to my Blog!

Hey Guys! Thanks for checking out my blog. I don’t have much here yet but I soon hope to start posting some of my setup and code soon to use Munki, PuppetServer, Simain, Sal, MunkiReport, Crypt, MacNamer, and Imagr to set up a full fledged automated mac management configuration and reporting solution.

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