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apt-dater setup


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Version information

  • 0.1.0 (latest)
released May 7th 2018
This version is compatible with:
  • Puppet Enterprise 2018.1.x, 2017.3.x, 2017.2.x, 2017.1.x, 2016.5.x, 2016.4.x
  • Puppet >= 4.7.0 < 6.0.0

Start using this module

  • r10k or Code Manager
  • Bolt
  • Manual installation
  • Direct download

Add this module to your Puppetfile:

mod 'fheinle-aptdater', '0.1.0'
Learn more about managing modules with a Puppetfile

Add this module to your Bolt project:

bolt module add fheinle-aptdater
Learn more about using this module with an existing project

Manually install this module globally with Puppet module tool:

puppet module install fheinle-aptdater --version 0.1.0

Direct download is not typically how you would use a Puppet module to manage your infrastructure, but you may want to download the module in order to inspect the code.



fheinle/aptdater — version 0.1.0 May 7th 2018


This module will install apt-dater, an ncurses-frontend to apt on multiple hosts, backed by SSH.


To set things up, you'll have to create a private/public key pair for SSH access to the nodes managed by apt-dater. It's wise to also create a dedicated user on each host and (at least somewhat) limit what the user can do with sudo by restricting usable commands to apt-get and aptitude (for dependency mgmt).

What puppet-aptdater affects

  • one host holds a SSH private key to log in to all configured clients
  • all clients hold the public corresponding SSH pubkey
  • client hosts have users with limited sudo access to apt-get for running updates and regular access to everything else
  • on the central node, there's an ncurses frontend to view and manage available updates on each host.

How to set up a central and several client nodes

  • Assign the aptdater class to each node
  • set the $ishost attribute to true for one of them

Additional requirements:

  • Create a private key, install it to /etc/apt-dater/ssh/id_rsa and distribute the corresponding public key to the apt-dater user on each client node.
node {

  class { 'apt-dater':
    ishost => true,

  file { 'apt-dater-private-key':
    ensure => 'present',
    path   => '/etc/apt-dater/ssh/id_rsa',
    owner  => 'apt-dater',
    group  => 'apt-dater',
    mode   => '0600',
    content => file('aptdater/obviouslyyouneedtocreateaprivatekeyyourself')

node {

  include ::apt-dater

  ssh_authorized_key { "apt-dater-${::facts['fqdn']}":
    ensure => 'present',
    user   => 'apt-dater',
    type   => 'ssh-rsa',
    key    => file('aptdater/alsoheregoesthepublickeypath'),
    target => ['from=""]


Having installed apt-dater on all hosts, just run the frontend apt-dater on your central node and manage updates from there.


There's only one class:

Class aptdater

  • ishost (Boolean): Install this host as a management node
  • username (String) Default: apt-dater: The username that should hold sudo rights on the client nodes. If you change this, make sure to change apt-dater's app config, too.
  • homedir (String) Default: /home/apt-dater: Used only for holding the pubkey


  • This module currently just installs pretty vanilla settings for apt-dater, if you want a lot of customization, feel free to add it.