OpsWorks Notes

Finally got a chance to get down and dirty creating Chef recipes for use in OpsWorks. These are primarily just some notes for myself.


  • opsworks-agent-cli allows you to view logs, manually run setup scripts, etc
    • not as useful a tool as one might want
    • probably its ability to spit out the entire stack config into a json file is its the most useful feature
    • the show_log log it presents is in /var/lib/aws/opsworks/chef/ if you’d prefer to tail it directly
  • Other logs are in /var/log/aws/opsworks, though I haven’t found those very informative or useful
  • Kudos to a dzone blog post (link below) for help in testing cookbooks. In short, it was much easier to debug the cookbooks from an instance in a dev OpsWorks env:

    1. made my edits to the cookbooks on the dev instance
    2. tested until desired results were achieved
    3. copied the final changes back to my source
    4. committed source to repo for automation use

      cd /opt/aws/opsworks/current/
      opsworks-agent-cli get_json > /tmp/attributes.json
      # edit /tmp/attributes.json as needed
      bin/chef-solo -c conf/solo.rb -j /tmp/attributes.json -o <cookbook::recipe>
  • was only able to get "setup" recipes to run, and not "deploy" scripts, when executing a recipe with a "stack command" from the OpsWorks web UI