Skip to main content

Release Notes: Chef Push Jobs 1.0 - 2.5

[edit on GitHub]

Chef Push Jobs is an extension of the Chef server that allows jobs to be run against nodes independently of a chef-client run. A job is an action or a command to be executed against a subset of nodes; the nodes against which a job is run are determined by the results of a search query made to the Chef server.

Chef Push Jobs uses the Chef server API and a Ruby client to initiate all connections to the Chef server. Connections use the same authentication and authorization model as any other request made to the Chef server. A knife plugin is used to initiate job creation and job tracking.

What’s New in 2.5

This release includes an important fix for a number of deadlock scenarios. We encourage anyone using Push Jobs to upgrade.

This also includes a number of maintenance items, including:

Ruby and RubyGems upgraded to 2.4.4 and 2.7.6, respectively, to include a number of security fixes. Chef Client (packaged as a library) upgraded to 14.0.202 Other dependencies upgraded to latest

What’s New in 2.4

Push Jobs Client 2.4.8

  • Adds support for AIX 7.1.

What’s New in 2.2

The following items are new for Chef Push Jobs:

Important Notes

  • Push Jobs Server 2.2.0 requires Chef Server 12.14.0 or later.

What’s New in 2.1

The following items are new for Chef Push Jobs:

  • Push Jobs client 2.1 is backwards-compatible with the Chef Push Jobs 1.x server when the allow_unencrypted option to be set to true in /etc/chef/push-jobs-client.rb.
  • Allow the job execution environment to be set. This includes user, working directory, environment variables and a data file to be set.
  • STDOUT/STDERR can now optionally be captured from job execution and return it to the server. Users can retrieve the output via the knife job output command.
  • We now provide two SSE feed endpoints; one provides fine grained per-job events, while the other provides a per-org feed of jobs starting and completing.
  • Command communication now uses libsodium based encryption via zeromq4’s CurveZMQ. This replaces the signing protocol used in 1.x. All zeromq packets are fully encrypted and signed, except for the server heartbeat broadcast, which is signed, but in the clear.
  • Push Jobs Server 2.1 is now certified for use with Chef Automate.

Important Notes

  • Push Jobs Server 2.1 is now fully supported for use with Chef Automate.
  • Push Jobs Server 2.0 is not compatible with Push Jobs Client 1.X. Ensure that all Push Jobs Clients are upgraded to the current stable release before performing an upgrade of your Push Jobs Server.

Upgrading Chef Automate Installation to use Push Jobs Server 2.1

If your Chef Automate installation uses Push Jobs Server to manage build nodes, upgrading to Push Jobs Server 2.1 is now fully supported. To upgrade:

  • On each build node, download the latest Push Jobs Client release and follow the installation instructions on each build node. If the build node was set up using automate-ctl install-build-node, then it runs on version 2.0 or greater and does not need upgraded.


    Do not restart the Push Jobs Client until after the Push Jobs Server upgrade is completed in the steps below.
  • On the Push Jobs Server node:

    • Install the latest Push Jobs Server package.

    • Run sudo opscode-push-jobs-server-ctl reconfigure.


      Once the reconfigure command above is issued, build nodes and other push clients will not be in communication with the server until they are restarted.
  • On each build node:

    • Remove the allow_unencrypted entry from /etc/chef/push-jobs-client.rb, if present.
    • Restart Push Jobs Client as appropriate for the system: sudo systemctl restart push-jobs-client OR sudo service restart push-jobs-client


All command channel communication is encrypted via SSL or CurveZMQ. CurveZMQ is based on the CurveCP protocol. The one exception to this is the server heartbeat, which is broadcast in the clear (but is still signed with the server key for integrity).

Command Output Capture

Both the knife-push library and the Chef Push Jobs API provide options to direct the client to capture the job output and return it to the server for inspection:

knife job start --capture "echo foobar" node1
Started. Job ID: 26e98ba162fa7ba6fb2793125553c7ae

knife job output --channel stdout 26e98ba162fa7ba6fb2793125553c7ae node1

Environment Control

The user has a lot more control over the execution environment of the remote command with three new options available to the knife push jobs start command.

This includes:

  • Environment variables (--with-env)
  • Execution directory (--in-dir)
  • Data file sent from the user to the push client (--file)
knife job start --file .chef/config.rb --capture --with-env '{"test": "foo"}' --in-dir "/tmp" --as-user daemon "print_execution_environment" node2
Started. Job ID: 26e98ba162fac37787292637362808cb

knife job output --channel stdout 26e98ba162fac37787292637362808cb node2

In addition to environment variables specified with the --with-env flag, there are three new special environment variables that are made available to you automatically:

  • CHEF_PUSH_JOB_FILE - The path to the temporary file containing the string you passed using the --file parameter.
  • CHEF_PUSH_NODE_NAME - The name of the node this instance of the push job is being run on.
  • CHEF_PUSH_JOB_ID - The ID for the job currently being run.

Server Sent Event Feeds

There are two new endpoints that provide feeds for the state of jobs on the server. There’s an organization-level feed that provides high level job start/completion information, and a per job feed that provides node level state changes for a particular job. As of this release, these feeds are only available via the Chef Push Jobs API.

Here is a quick example of what an organization-level feed might look like.

event: start
id: dcd37f50-2d77-4761-895b-33134dbf87d1
data: {"timestamp":"2014-07-10 05:10:40.995958Z","job":"B","command":"chef-client","run_timeout":300,"user":"rebecca","quorum":2,"node_count":2}

event: job_complete
id: dcd37f50-2d77-4761-895b-33134dbf87d2
data: {"timestamp":"2014-07-10 05:15:48.995958Z","job":"A","status":"success"}

event: start
id: dcd37f50-2d77-4761-895b-33134dbf87d3
data: {"timestamp":"2014-07-10 05:17:40.995958Z","job":"C","command":"cat /etc/passwd","run_timeout":300,"user":"charles","quorum":2,"node_count":2}

event: job_complete
id: dcd37f50-2d77-4761-895b-33134dbf87d4
data: {"timestamp":"2014-07-10 05:17:41.995958Z","job":"C","status":"success"}

event: job_complete
id: dcd37f50-2d77-4761-895b-33134dbf87d5
data: {"timestamp":"2014-07-10 05:20:48.995958Z","job":"B","status":"success"}

Was this page helpful?