Ansible is a configuration management tool that allows you to automate the configuration and deployment of applications and systems in your environment. It uses a simple, human-readable language called YAML to describe the desired state of your infrastructure, and then automatically enacts those changes using a combination of scripts and plugins. With Ansible, you can manage the configuration of multiple servers from a single control machine, and deploy applications and updates with a single command. It is widely used in DevOps environments for configuration management, deployment automation, and provisioning of resources.

Ansible is used to automate a wide variety of tasks, including the installation and configuration of applications, the deployment of updates and patches, the management of system and application configurations, the creation and management of users and groups, and the provisioning of resources such as compute instances, networks, and storage.

To use ansible, you write ”playbooks” which are files containing a series of instructions written in YAML that describe the desired state of your infrastructure. These playbooks can be run manually or automatically as part of a continuous integration and deployment pipeline.

Ansible works by connecting to your nodes (servers, VMs, etc.) and applying the instructions defined in your playbooks. It uses a variety of plugins and modules to interact with different systems and applications, such as package managers, cloud providers, and source control systems.

Ansible is particularly useful for managing complex environments with many servers and dependencies, as it allows you to codify the desired state of your infrastructure and enforce it consistently across all of your nodes. It is also highly extensible, with a wide range of community-developed plugins and modules that can be used to manage a variety of different systems and applications.