Introduction

StackStorm has the ability to run Ansible playbooks. In this post I will install and configure the Ansible pack and create a workflow to test out the functionality.

Lab Environment

I have StackStorm installed on a Centos7 host. The following software versions will be utilised as part of this lab.

  • StackStorm - 2.10.4
  • Ansible Pack - 0.5.7

Dependencies

There are a couple of dependencies to install so lets go ahead and make sure they are installed.

cmd

sudo yum install gcc krb5-devel
            

Installation

In order to interact with ST2 on the CLI you will need to first authenticate to receive and API token. The token will then need to be provided with every request.

cmd

sudo st2 auth st2admin -p SuperSecretPassword

# output
+----------+----------------------------------+
| Property | Value                            |
+----------+----------------------------------+
| user     | st2admin                         |
| token    | AUTHENTICATION-TOKEN             |
| expiry   | 2019-04-29T04:41:47.655393Z      |
+----------+----------------------------------+
            

Install the Ansible pack with the st2 pack install command. Use the -t flag to specify the token.

cmd

st2 pack install ansible -t AUTHENTICATION-TOKEN

# output
For the "ansible" pack, the following content will be registered:

rules     |  0
sensors   |  0
triggers  |  0
actions   |  8
aliases   |  0

Installation may take a while for packs with many items.

	[ succeeded ] download pack
	[ succeeded ] make a prerun
	[ succeeded ] install pack dependencies
	[ succeeded ] register pack

+-------------+--------------------------------------------------+
| Property    | Value                                            |
+-------------+--------------------------------------------------+
| name        | ansible                                          |
| description | st2 content pack containing ansible integrations |
| version     | 0.5.7                                            |
| author      | StackStorm, Inc.                                 |
+-------------+--------------------------------------------------+
            

Great, the pack installed successfully. It looks like this pack includes 8 actions. Lets have a look and see what they are.

cmd

st2 action list -t AUTHENTICATION-TOKEN | grep ansible

# output
| ansible.command                 | ansible     | Run ad-hoc ansible command (module)                |
| ansible.command_local           | ansible     | Run ad-hoc ansible command (module) on local       |
| ansible.galaxy.install          | ansible     | Download & Install role from ansible galaxy        |
| ansible.galaxy.list             | ansible     | Display a list of installed roles from ansible     |
| ansible.galaxy.remove           | ansible     | Remove an installed from ansible galaxy role       |
| ansible.playbook                | ansible     | Run ansible playbook                               |
| ansible.vault.decrypt           | ansible     | Decrypt ansible data files                         |
| ansible.vault.encrypt           | ansible     | Encrypt ansible data files                         |
            

Test Run

Lets perform a quick test run against the localhost to ensure it's working as expected.

cmd

st2 run ansible.command hosts=localhost args="hostname -A" -t AUTHENTICATION-TOKEN

# output
....
id: 5cc5329d52364c0905697b08
status: succeeded
parameters:
  args: hostname -A
  cwd: /opt/stackstorm/packs/ansible
  hosts: localhost
result:
  failed: false
  return_code: 0
  stderr: " [WARNING]: Unable to parse /etc/ansible/hosts as an inventory source
 [WARNING]: No inventory was parsed, only implicit localhost is available
 [WARNING]: provided hosts list is empty, only localhost is available. Note
that the implicit localhost does not match 'all'"
  stdout: 'localhost | CHANGED | rc=0 >>
    st2.lab.local '
  succeeded: true
            

Success! Now lest try execute a workflow on a remote host. Before we do, Ansible will run as the root user so we need to copy the root users ssh keys over to the target node in order to connect without a password.

cmd

sudo ssh-copy-id ansible-node01

# output
/bin/ssh-copy-id: INFO: Source of key(s) to be installed: "/root/.ssh/id_rsa.pub"
The authenticity of host 'ansible-node01 (192.168.255.110)' can't be established.
ECDSA key fingerprint is SHA256:+NdxuymH0r6hbqlykR9rlOQNmFSeajjzwT69BspFyKQ.
ECDSA key fingerprint is MD5:3b:06:63:e5:82:48:63:18:89:df:67:ed:ac:f9:bb:9c.
Are you sure you want to continue connecting (yes/no)? yes
/bin/ssh-copy-id: INFO: attempting to log in with the new key(s), to filter out any that are already installed
/bin/ssh-copy-id: INFO: 1 key(s) remain to be installed -- if you are prompted now it is to install the new keys
root@ansible-node01's password:

Number of key(s) added: 1

Now try logging into the machine, with:   "ssh 'ansible-node01'"
and check to make sure that only the key(s) you wanted were added.
            

Workflow

Lets create a workflow to test out some of the features of the Ansible pack. We will create a workflow that installs the cowsay package and executes acowsay command.

Create a pack directory and change into it.

cmd

sudo mkdir -p /opt/stackstorm/packs/cp_ansible/actions/workflows/
cd /opt/stackstorm/packs/cp_ansible/
            

ST2 will look for any playbooks and inventory in the path relative to the pack that is executing the actions.

Create a playbook called playbook.yaml in the cp_ansible directory.

file

---
# /opt/stackstorm/packs/cp_ansible/playbook.yaml
- name: "Cowsay Playbook"
  hosts: all
  tasks:
    - yum:
        name: "cowsay"
        state: latest
          

Create an inventory file called inventory in the cp_ansible directory.

file

# /opt/stackstorm/packs/cp_ansible/inventory
[nodes]
ansible-node01.lab.local
            

Create a metadata file called pack.yaml in the cp_ansible directory.

file

---
# /opt/stackstorm/packs/cp_ansible/pack.yaml
ref: "cp_ansible"
name: "cp_ansible"
description: "codingpackets ansible pack"
keywords:
  - "ansible"
version: "0.1.0"
author: "Brad Searle"
email: "bradsearle@lab.local"
            

Create an action file called cowsay.yaml in the actions/.

file

---
# /opt/stackstorm/packs/cp_ansible/actions/cowsay.yaml
description: "Cowsay action for ansible pack"
enabled: True
entry_point: "workflows/cowsay.yaml"
name: "cowsay"
pack: "cp_ansible"
runner_type: "mistral-v2"
            

The workflow contains two tasks. The first task installs the cowsay package. The second tasks runs the cowsay command. The first task also has an on-success parameter which forces the second task to wait until the first task completes successfully before executing.

Create a workflow file called cowsay.yaml in the actions/workflows/ directory.

file

---
# /opt/stackstorm/packs/cp_ansible/actions/workflows/cowsay.yaml
version: "2.0"
cp_ansible.cowsay:
  description: "A sample workflow that demonstrates Ansible playbook execution."
  type: direct
  tasks:
    task1:
      action: ansible.playbook
      input:
        playbook: "playbook.yaml"
        inventory_file: "inventory"
      on-success:
        - task2
    task2:
      action: ansible.command
      input:
        args: "cowsay 'Ansible cow says: MOOOOOO!'"
        inventory_file: "inventory"
        hosts: "all"
            

Install the action with the st2 action create command.

cmd

st2 action create actions/cowsay.yaml -t AUTHENTICATION-TOKEN

# output
+---------------+--------------------------------+
| Property      | Value                          |
+---------------+--------------------------------+
| id            | 5cc57eb452364c0905697b71       |
| name          | cowsay                         |
| pack          | cp_ansible                     |
| description   | Cowsay action for ansible pack |
| enabled       | True                           |
| entry_point   | workflows/cowsay.yaml          |
| metadata_file |                                |
| notify        |                                |
| output_schema |                                |
| parameters    |                                |
| ref           | cp_ansible.cowsay              |
| runner_type   | mistral-v2                     |
| tags          |                                |
| uid           | action:cp_ansible:cowsay       |
+---------------+--------------------------------+
            

Run the test playbook with the st2 run command.

cmd

st2 run cp_ansible.cowsay -t AUTHENTICATION-TOKEN

# output
.....
id: 5cc57f1752364c0905697b7a
action.ref: cp_ansible.cowsay
parameters: None
status: succeeded
result_task: task2
result:
  failed: false
  return_code: 0
  stderr: ''
  stdout: 'ansible-node01.lab.local | CHANGED | rc=0 >>
 ____________________________
< Ansible cow says: MOOOOOO! >
 ----------------------------
        \   ^__^
         \  (oo)\_______
            (__)\       )\/\
                ||----w |
                ||     ||'
  succeeded: true
start_timestamp: Sun, 28 Apr 2019 10:23:19 UTC
end_timestamp: Sun, 28 Apr 2019 10:23:28 UTC
+--------------------------+------------------------+-------+------------------+----------------------------+
| id                       | status                 | task  | action           | start_timestamp            |
+--------------------------+------------------------+-------+------------------+----------------------------+
| 5cc57f1752364c0905697b7d | succeeded (7s elapsed) | task1 | ansible.playbook | Sun, 28 Apr 2019 10:23:19  |
|                          |                        |       |                  | UTC                        |
| 5cc57f1e52364c0905697b7f | succeeded (1s elapsed) | task2 | ansible.command  | Sun, 28 Apr 2019 10:23:26  |
|                          |                        |       |                  | UTC                        |
+--------------------------+------------------------+-------+------------------+----------------------------+
            

Boom Shakalaka! The workflow ran successfully!

Summary

StackStorm is a very flexible and versatile automation tool. In this post we installed the Ansible pack and tested its usage by creating a workflow to execute Ansible actions.

stackstorm ansible