Intro to Chef for Mac Admins

Speakers: Sebastian Nash

Level: Intermediate, Lecture

Excerpt: Chef is a powerful automation platform that transforms infrastructure into code. In this session we’ll be covering everything you’ll need to evaluate or get started managing your Macs using Chef.

Description: Chef is a configuration management tool and a leading technology in the ‘Infrastructure as Code’ movement. As well as orchestrating fleets of servers, Chef can and is used to manage Macs (e.g. Facebook). The session will initially provide an overview of the platform:

* Chef components, methodology and nomenclature
* Chef Solo or Chef Server?
* Chef Server options
* Bootstrapping Macs
* Reporting
* The Chef community for Mac management (notable recipes, tools, etc.)

We’ll also discuss what it’s like to leverage Chef at a smaller shop, using our ongoing experiences of implementing the tool ustwo, managing a group of around 300 Macs. We’ll cover:

* Why we felt we needed configuration management tool
* Why we chose Chef
* How Chef fits in our toolset (MDM, Munki, etc.)
* Tips and the mistakes we learned from along the way
* How Chef has benefitted the IT team and the organisation as a whole

So, wash your hands, grab your ingredients, don your toque blanche and let’s get cooking!

About the speaker

Sebastian Nash (Twitter: @sebbo) – IT Manager – ustwo

Seb founded, a Mac-focused consultancy and managed service provider over 10 years ago. Thanks largely to the great work of Graham Gilbert, is the birthplace of Sal a tool relied upon by many business and admins to manage their Macs.

After some time in the wilderness (Tajikistan!), Seb is now an IT Manager at ustwo, a digital product studio. ustwo builds digital experiences from locations in London, Malm, New York and Sydney be it for clients (Google, Sky, Ford), for themselves (Moodnotes, Pause) or for fun (Monument Valley).

Seb’s previous speaking engagements include talks at London Apple Admins and the Apple’s retail stores.

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