Chef Essentials: Mastering the Basics of Config Management

Automate your server configuration and management. Accelerate your career. Master the Chef Essentials
4.3 (32 ratings)
Instead of using a simple lifetime average, Udemy calculates a
course's star rating by considering a number of different factors
such as the number of ratings, the age of ratings, and the
likelihood of fraudulent ratings.
• 603 students enrolled
Instructed by Alex Glover IT & Software / Other
Take This Course
  • Lectures 18
  • Length 3 hours
  • Skill Level Beginner Level
  • Languages English
  • Includes Lifetime access
    30 day money back guarantee!
    Available on iOS and Android
    Certificate of Completion
Wishlisted Wishlist

How taking a course works


Find online courses made by experts from around the world.


Take your courses with you and learn anywhere, anytime.


Learn and practice real-world skills and achieve your goals.

About This Course

Published 3/2016 English

Course Description

Are you looking to advance your IT career? Do you want to automate your System Administrator tasks on-prem or in the cloud so you can focus on the value-add problems? Would your organization benefit from faster, standardized, and predictable server automation? Are you trying to transform your legacy IT services into a DevOps model?

Then you need to take this course and start taking advantage of this amazing tool!

The Chef Essentials course will teach you the fundamentals of Chef, including how to install the Chef Development Kit, writing cookbooks and recipes, how to use recipe sub-components, and how to test your recipes locally.

This course includes reference materials and simple examples designed to help you build a solid foundation of Chef and configuration management knowledge. The course is primarily in video lecture format, but also includes quizzes throughout the course to check your comprehension and hands on projects to build real world experience.

It will take you roughly one week to accomplish Chef Essentials, depending on how much time you can dedicate to the course each day. The course is structured in two major sections, an Overview section and a Deep Dive section. The Overview section is designed to demonstrate the power of Chef, explain fundamental concepts, and explain Chef-centric terminology. The Deep Dive section will be comprised of lectures and hands on labs to teach you about:

  • Cookbooks
  • Recipes, including dependencies and 'include' statements
  • Templates
  • Attributes
  • Libraries
  • Troubleshooting

Chef experience can be a differentiator when looking for a new role and make you invaluable in your current position. Chef can automate your server configuration and is a crucial piece of any delivery toolchain. Chef provides the simple, reliable automation you need for configuration management, and this course provides the quickest path to leveraging Chef.

I look forward to you joining my course.

What are the requirements?

  • Students should already be somewhat familiar with Linux command line
  • Students should be comfortable editing text files from the command line

What am I going to get from this course?

  • Understand Chef terminology and concepts
  • Automate server configuration with Chef recipes and cookbooks
  • Understand configuration management concepts such as idempotence
  • Leverage Erubis templates for dynamically configuring servers and applications
  • Implement attributes and understand precedence

Who is the target audience?

  • This course is meant for entry-level IT professionals with some basic Linux system administration experience and an interest in automation. No formal development or programming experience is necessary. If you are looking for Chef Server administration or advanced Chef Development Kit training, then please see my other Chef courses (coming soon!)

What you get with this course?

Not for you? No problem.
30 day money back guarantee.

Forever yours.
Lifetime access.

Learn on the go.
Desktop, iOS and Android.

Get rewarded.
Certificate of completion.


Section 1: Introduction, Setup, and Concepts
In this lecture I will introduce myself as the lecturer, discuss some practical and career benefits of learning Chef, and go over a high-level syllabus for the course.

In this lecture, we'll review the requirements for our lab that we will use for the rest of our Chef tutorials and training. Please note that this course is heavily focused on Linux and the video lectures and labs will be based on using an Ubuntu. The concepts can be carried over and applied to other Linux distros and even Windows, but our examples will be limited to Ubuntu.


In this lecture, we'll walk through setting up Cloud9 for your use as lab environment. This will be the environment that the instructor uses for all of the Chef tutorials and labs in this course, so this is the recommended lab setup. Cloud9 is all you need for this course.


In this lecture, we'll discuss configuration management concepts and theory in the abstract, as well as review how specifically those configuration management concepts are implemented with Chef. We will briefly review the concept of declarative programming, explain idempotence, and review some Chef-specific terminology.

Section 2: Hands On Labs
Hello World Pre-Lab

In this lecture and lab, we'll jumpstart the hands on labs section with a walk through of our first Chef resource executions and recipe writing. This Chef tutorial will include execution of individual Chef resources, writing our first stand-alone recipe, and demonstrating some of the configuration management concepts we discussed earlier.

Lab: Hello World Part 2
4 questions

A brief quiz to test your knowledge and verify you learned the key concepts from the previous lecture and lab.


In this pre-lab, we'll take a deep dive into resources, how they work cross-platform, and resource properties in preparation for our lab. The lab will be a Chef tutorial on how to use resources.


In this lab, we'll walk through a Chef tutorial on how to use resources and apply what we've learned in the pre-lab.

6 questions

A brief quiz to test your knowledge and verify you learned the key concepts from the previous lecture and lab.

Cookbooks and chef-client Pre-Lab

In this lecture and lab, we'll review cookbooks and cookbook directory structure, outline cookbook components, and do a Chef tutorial on how to use chef-client instead of chef-apply.

5 questions

A brief quiz to test your knowledge and verify you learned the key concepts from the previous lecture and lab.

Templates and cookbook_file Pre-Lab

In this lecture and lab, we'll review the Erubis template engine and template syntax, the cookbook_file resource, and walk through a Chef tutorial demonstrating how to use both of these Chef elements.

5 questions
A brief quiz to test your knowledge and verify you learned the key concepts from the previous lecture and lab.
Attributes Pre-Lab

In this lecture and lab, we'll discuss attribute use cases, precedence, inheritance, and do a Chef tutorial together demonstrating how to use attributes in your recipes and attribute precedence.

6 questions
A brief quiz to test your knowledge and verify you learned the key concepts from the previous lecture and lab.
Run-lists Pre-Lab

In this lecture and lab, we'll discuss how to use run-lists instead of passing the override-run-list argument to the chef-client, allowing us to specify multiple recipes, cookbooks, and even override attributes.


A few quick reminders and a thank you to all of my students.

Students Who Viewed This Course Also Viewed

  • Loading
  • Loading
  • Loading

Instructor Biography

Alex Glover, Senior Cloud Architect

I am a senior cloud architect with experience in both building custom, internal private clouds as well as leveraging public cloud providers. For the last 3 years, I've been architecting and deploying scalable, elastic, and highly-available applications, including large enterprise applications such as ERPs, eCommerce, and asset management suites. I have 8 years of broad IT and development experience and love teaching others.

Ready to start learning?
Take This Course