What Are Ansible Towers and Why Do I Need Them?

What Are Ansible Towers and Why Do I Need Them?

After learning about Ansible playbooks, we now know how the software manages and maps different tasks and resources to provide an efficient IT solution. However; we have yet to explore how Ansible provides its services to end users. In this section we will discuss Ansible Tower, a web based solution through which Ansible provides access to IT companies. Ansible Tower is designed in such a way that it oversees all the automation tasks from a user perspective, thereby acting as a hub for all tasks. The main features of Ansible towers are:

  1. Being the hub of all automation tasks, as above. Ansible Tower also maintains logs of all the jobs which can later be used for improvement testing or debugging.
  2. Ansible Tower gives users permission to control accessibility across its infrastructure, and also allows transferring of SSH credentials.
  3. Tower integrates quite well with LDAP (Lightweight Directory Access Protocol), and the REST API can be leveraged for an amazing browsing experience.
  4. There is an option to link applications such as Jenkins through the command line integration which is available with towers.
  5. Ansible Tower is free to use up to 10 nodes, and brings with it Ansible’s support to help IT companies.
  6. It goes without saying that installation of Tower is done through Ansible playbooks.

Why do I need Ansible Tower?

You need Ansible Tower to make sure that all services provided by the software are effectively and readily available to you. Since Tower is web based, it means you can access it from your home or your office. It’s biggest advantage however is that it adds to the utility of the whole Ansible software. Imagine you are using Ansible but can’t access the application. That means you can’t connect with the command line to run other applications in synchronization with Ansible. You can’t check the logs either, which eventually means that you have no control whatsoever. Not such a good situation to be in, is it?

To be frank, users need Towers a lot more than Ansible wants you to use it.  Ansible Tower is like all the toppings and the flavor that you put on a pizza. A plain pizza base isn’t exactly tasty, but a pizza with sauce and fresh toppings makes it a meal worth having. So go grab a slice!

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