GETIING STARTED WITH ANSIBLE.UTILS COLLECTION
The Ansible ansible.utils collection offers several plugins that help Ansible playbook developers handle, manipulate, and visualize data. When working with the complicated data structures present in an Ansible playbook, inventory, or returned from modules, this collection is most commonly used. For detailed examples of how these utilities can be used in tasks, see the documentation pages for each plugin.
Plugins inside ansible.utils
Plugins are pieces of code that extend the functionality of Ansible. This program runs on the control node. It also provides options and extensions for the Red Hat Ansible Automation Platform’s key functionality. This set of ansible.utils plugins include:
Data is manipulated by filter plugins. You can extract a specific value, convert data types and formats, conduct mathematical calculations, split and concatenate strings, insert dates and times, and much more with the right filter. Ansible extends Jinja2’s regular filters and provides some specific filter plugins.
Ansible-specific extensions to the Jinja2 templating language are lookup plugins. Within your playbooks, you can utilize lookup plugins to access data from other sources (files, databases, key/value stores, APIs, and other services). Lookups, like all templating, run on the Ansible control machine and are assessed. Using the standard templating system, Ansible makes the data supplied by a lookup plugin available. Lookup plugins can be used to populate variables or templates with data from external sources.
Template expressions are evaluated by test plugins and a True or False value is returned. You can use test plugins to implement the logic of your tasks, blocks, plays, playbooks, and roles by using conditionals. Ansible Automation Platform makes advantage of the Jinja standard tests and adds some specific test plugins.
Modules are the fundamental components of Ansible playbooks. Although the term “module plugins” is not commonly used, a module is a form of a plugin.
Different use cases of Utils
As we all know, ansible.utils include a wide range of plugins and applications. The most typical use cases for ansible.utils are as follows:
- Validating business logic with validating and testing plugins before publishing settings
- Using test plugins to audit architectural deposition and layouts
- Using the get path and to path plugins in an Ansible playbook to manage complex data structures
- Using test plugins to carry out small network address checks
- Validate plugins and assess operational state using cli parse
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