Red Hat satellite is an open source system management tool , that can manage the Product life-cycle environment in production.
It allows administrators to directly deploy resources or content in the product life cycle Stage eg: Development,QA etc
Red Hat Satellite is based on upstream project TheForeman and katello. It also consists of puppet for config management, pulp is responsible for content storage and management.
So , in brief ,we could say that Red Hat satellite is life cycle management tool , with provisioning capabilities and integrated config management.
To this day , Satellite 6.1.9 is the major release, with beta 6.2
Satellite also encompasses some useful plugins which are helpful in Hosts management , and auditing some of the plugins are :
- OSCAP - The OpenSCAP ecosystem provides multiple tools to assist administrators and auditors with assessment, measurement and enforcement of security baselines. We maintain great flexibility and interoperability, reducing costs of performing security audits.
- Discovery Plugin -The satellite is not only capable of provisioning hosts , but can also discover the hosts directly from the specified subnet and later provision them. (Also capable of Bulk Provision)
- foreman_templates- When the provisioning is done , we can pre-defined , what the satellite should do next with those provisioned hosts, this can be written in the form of scripts and stored as Provisioning templates , where we can handle the settings while doing provisioning , this provides flexibility, to customize provisioning according to need.
- Katello - katello is another open source project , which helps in content management. It helps to provide hosts content and mimic the traditional environment path (Dev → QE → Stage → Production)
- Remode Code Execution- This features lets user , run commands on to the hosts diresclty , currently it it uses ssh to do so , but the plan is to add more communication providers. Communication goes through the smart proxy so Foreman does not have to have direct access to the target host and can scale to control many hosts. A command can be customized similarly to provisioning templates.
There are some of many features , that are used very often and makes this tool different from the traditional bunch.
To learn and view all plugins: http://projects.theforeman.org/projects/foreman/wiki/List_of_Plugins
The another feature that interesting is The Provisioning part :
Red Hat Satellite supports all major Providers except Azure (soon to change), the provisioning on these resources is automatically done via Satellite ,and with similar settings and users don't have to provide , provider specific settings. Satellite creates a extra layer of abstraction between the user and providers.
These providers are considered as Compute resources in satellite.
Once the computer resource of any type is added , user has to go to new host page and specifiy the compute resource to deploy host and this would be similar for all providers.
Red Hat Satellite is still gaining it's pace and continuously growing by the hour , it is slowly changing the traditional approaches for life cycle Management and content management.