fighting the lack of good ideas

ogsh/ogfs for fun and profit

The absolute coolest feature of HP’s Server Automation suite is the OGSH (or OGFS) – the Opsware Global SHell (or FileSystem).

I worked for Opsware before HP acquired them, and the OGSH was a new feature to the product (then called Opsware SAS (Server Automation System)). It’s a fuse module that gives a [limited] bash interface to the managed environment by presenting a live query/view into the database, and, ultimately, allowing manipulation of managed servers in the environment.

For example, to access a list of all managed servers, you login to global shell, then

cd /opsw/Server/@

The ‘@’ sign is used to indicate you are “there” – at the limit of that particular filter (in this case, “Server”).

Since it’s bash, you can run most common *nix utilities and commands. But the one that’s most handy, in my opinion, is rosh – the Remote Opsware SHell.

Remote shell opens an authenticated, logged session to a remote machine (*nix or Windows – doesn’t matter), based on your user’s/group’s permissions. For testing purposes, I always configure one group (and add myself) that can connect using root for *nix machines (and Administrator on Windows).

The basic command to connect to a machine is:

rosh -l [username] -n [machine]

You can also pass commands to rosh like it was an ssh session:

rosh -l [username] -n [machine] '[command]'

For the fullest power of rosh, though, use it in a script or loop. For example:

for sn in *; do rosh -l root -n $sn 'uptime ; uname -a'; done

That will remote shell into every server in the current view, using standard shell expansion of the splat (*), and run uptime and uname -a, printing the results to screen. That particular command is handy for quick-and-dirty reports on the managed environment to see

  • which servers are up, and which aren’t
  • how long they’ve been up

In addition to rosh, global shell provides a near-complete exposing of the SA API (which is also accessible via Java, web services, and Python (using the “PyTwist” bindings written to access the Java interfaces).