# Scout Goss Integration

In the Scout Announcement blog post I mentioned we are looking to integrate Goss into Scout and I wanted to post an update on that.

## Background

Goss is something similar to serverspec - it lets you write unit tests about your nodes actual state rather than code used to build it. Goss definitions are written in YAML or JSON and supports Go templating for customization.

This model is well suited for the purposes of monitoring since you can write really in depth sets of validations and treat them as a single unit.

Goss is written in Go, very fast and thanks to a lot of work I did recently embeddable in other software.

Here’s an example Goss specification:

port:
tcp:22:
listening: true
ip:
- 0.0.0.0
tcp6:22:
listening: true
ip:
- '::'
service:
sshd:
enabled: true
running: true
user:
sshd:
exists: true
uid: 74
gid: 74
groups:
- sshd
home: /var/empty/sshd
group:
sshd:
exists: true
gid: 74
process:
sshd:
running: true


You can see we are able to check many types of server resource and combine them into one test. If we combined this with remediation, and the ability to run this continuously or adhoc we can have a nice framework to build something powerful.

## Scout Integration

Today Scout is configurable from within Puppet, we shipped Goss support in the release announced today.

I’ve set things up so you can use the Hierarchical data from Hiera to create your Goss specification:

choria::scout_gossfile:
package:
openssh-server:
installed: true
port:
tcp:22:
listening: true
ip:
- 0.0.0.0
service:
sshd:
enabled: true
running: true


This is automatically deep merged in Puppet - you can have layers in your hierarchy contribute checks to have unique sets of checks for various parts of your fleet.

With this done, we can now schedule a regular check using goss:

choria::scout_check{"goss":
builtin => "goss"
}


This will do a full validate every 5 minutes and produce CloudEvents to the Choria network. Failures will map to CRITICAL so these will behave like any other Nagios like check. No extra dependencies are needed. It supports remediation hooks and all the other usual check settings.

When running as a check the node overrides file is used as Goss Variables, meaning you can do data interpolation using templates.

We do not currently publish the full reports to the network, but that’s something we an look at in the future.

OK: OK: Count: 5, Failed: 0, Duration: 0.067s|checks=5;; failed=0;; runtime=0.067405s


We also shipped a scout agent to all nodes, this can be used to trigger checks, set maintenance etc but also to run adhoc Goss validations.

Here we validate a specific YAML file which should already exist, we will add the ability to send adhoc YAML to the nodes soon.

These runs return a lot of data about each check, not really usable on the CLI but as a API building block this will help us a lot.

## Golang API

Speaking of APIs, for the first time in Choria we are publishing Golang client packages to interact with a specific agent, here’s an example of retrieving the list of checks from a node.

package main

import (
"context"
"fmt"

scoutagent "github.com/choria-io/go-choria/scout/agent/scout"
scoutclient "github.com/choria-io/go-choria/scout/client/scout"
)

func main() {
scout := scoutclient.Must()
scout.OptionIdentityFilter("dev1.example.net")

res, err := scout.Trigger().Checks([]interface{}{"mailq"}).Do(context.Background())
if err != nil {
panic(err)
}

res.EachOutput(func(r *scoutclient.TriggerOutput) {
err = r.ParseTriggerOutput(data)
if err != nil {
fmt.Printf("Invalid result from: %s: %s\n", r.ResultDetails().Sender(), err)
return
}

fmt.Printf("%s:\n", r.ResultDetails().Sender())
fmt.Printf("\tTransitioned: %v\n", data.TransitionedChecks)
fmt.Printf("\tSkipped: %v\n", data.SkippedChecks)
fmt.Printf("\tFailed: %v\n", data.FailedChecks)
})
}


This is the equivalent of choria req scout trigger check=mailq -I dev1.example.net.

When run this produce the following output:

\$ ~/trigger
dev1.example.net:
Transitioned: [mailq]
Skipped: []
Failed: []


You will be able to invoke Goss and interact with the results via the same API.

## Conclusion

I have some other ideas for Goss, but as a starting point I am really happy with where this is and glad to see the over 1 000 line patch I did to Goss finally being used.