Puppet today made major changes at the corporate level while also releasing the latest enterprise version of its software. Puppet Enterprise 2016.1 brings the Puppet Orchestration tool up to an enterprise-grade level of maturity, and adds visualization capabilities.

For administrators, the underlying graph structure of the Puppet database allows for some interesting monitoring opportunities. With this most recent release, those opportunities are fully realized, and can be used to create visualizations that describe the current state of the network and cluster being managed by Puppet.

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Orchestration is the key for Puppet Enterprise 2016.1. Users will now be able to gain visibility into their managed clusters, and to throttle servers up or down as needed. It is now possible to push out changes to a cluster on-demand using the Puppet orchestration tools, and those changes can be confined or spread as far as needed, rather than being stuck deploying only to all machines or none.

In other news, Puppet Labs (the company) is known as just Puppet as of today. This change accompanied the hiring of a new president and COO, Sanjay Mirchandani, formerly CIO of EMC, who is leaving a job at VMware to come to Puppet.

Mirchandani will be heading up operations and corporate work, while Puppet creator and CEO Luke Kanies will continue to drive the product side of the business. Kanies created Puppet almost 11 years ago as a way to replace CFEngine.

Kanies said that, back then, describing Puppet as a better CFEngine was tough because many admins had never even heard of any configuration-management tools, let alone CFEngine. Today, he said, configuration management is understood in the marketplace, and thus Puppet is easier to sell.

Said Mirchandani of Kanies, “Luke is symbolic and iconic with the industry. I worked with Microsoft and EMC in their early years. These were companies that were innovating in the space. If I was going to be anywhere, I’d want to be where innovation is coming from.”