Note: Please go to to access the current RightScale documentation set. Also, feel free to Chat with us!
Home > Release Notes > RightLink Release Notes > RightLink 5.8

RightLink 5.8

Table of Contents

Release Date: June 29, 2012


New Features

Security and Compliance

  • Compliance with the Linux Filesystem Hierarchy Standard (FHS) helps RightLink co-exist with host-based IDS
  • See INSTALL.rdoc for more information on filesystem paths
  • Managed login requires users to login to their own limited-privilege account and to execute privileged commands using “sudo”
  • Some features of RightLink can be disabled prior to package install, to facilitate custom image builds for high-security deployment environments


  • Concurrent recipe/script execution is supported; see the –thread option of rs_run_recipe and rs_run_right_script.
  • Non-error audit output can be suppressed for recipes/scripts that run very frequently; see the –policy and –audit-period options of rs_run_recipe and rs_run_right_script
  • Tag queries accept a timeout option – both via the rs_tag command-line tool, and the ServerCollection resource
  • The agent queries its own tags before running a sequence of scripts or recipes, helping to ensure that tag-based decisions are made using fresh state. The result of the tag query is audited to enhance transparency and facilitate debugging.


  • Chef 0.10.10
  • An rs_ohai command is available to invoke Ohai from the command line with all of the RightScale plugins and enhancements.
  • RightLink features “development mode” for cookbooks, wherein the instance directly checks out cookbooks from their associated Git/Subversion repository and converges using the contents of the repo. Users can edit recipes between runs, and even commit and push their changes upstream after everything is working.
    • Enable this for selected cookbooks by applying a tag to the server that lists comma-separated dev cookbook names
    • e.g. rs_agent_dev:dev_cookbooks=cb_1,cb_2,cb_3,…
  • For more information on cookbook development, see Chef Developer Workflows.
  • Most commands invoked by Ohai/Chef are logged with DEBUG severity for easier debugging of troublesome providers/recipes. To change the RightLink log, use the rs_log_level command.

sudo with RightLink 5.8

RightLink 5.8 requires users to SSH in as a non-privileged user and to use "sudo" if they want to run commands as root. For simple commands, "sudo foo" gets the job done. But sudo does not change any environment variables (such as $HOME) and does not execute root's bashrc. The result is that complex commands (things that refer to environment variables or read configuration files from the user's home directory) may not run as expected.

If you need to run complex commands through sudo, you should use the -i flag for sudo, which will simulate initial login, including setting $HOME to /root. This will cause complex commands to work better, preventing a tricky aspect of using the sudo command.

If a user logs into an instance as exampleuser  and runs "sudo gem install foo" then the gem command will run using exampleuser's RubyGems configuration. Exampleuser does not have a .gemrc file in its home directory, so RubyGems reads the system defaults from /etc/gemrc. When RightLink freezes the RubyGems repository, it does not touch the system defaults; rather, it edits the .gemrc file in root's home directory. Therefore, running "sudo gem install foo" does not use the frozen RubyGems repository provided by the RightScale mirrors. However, "sudo -i gem install foo" does use the mirrors, because RubyGems correctly uses the .gemrc file in root's home directory.


  • The rs_agent_dev:log_level tag now allows you to specify any level (not just debug). Other agent-dev tags no longer force debug log level. The log level can be changed by other utilities, e.g. the rs_log_level command, even if it has been initially set by the tag. The chef process will re-query its tags prior to convergence and the rs_log_level tag will take precedence in this case.

Bug Fixes

  • The command-line tools now report a meaningful version number (currently 0.3) and will continue to do so with future RightLink releases
  • Instances will strand if they fail to install any package required by boot scripts
  • HTTP metadata fetching is more tolerant of server errors; its output is far less verbose
  • The UI’s ordering of cookbook repositories is preserved at runtime for cookbooks that are defined in multiple repos
  • Extraneous Ohai debug output has been stricken from audits and logs
  • RightLink agent startup and shutdown is more reliable under Linux
You must to post a comment.
Last modified
14:14, 10 Mar 2014




This page has no classifications.



© 2006-2014 RightScale, Inc. All rights reserved.
RightScale is a registered trademark of RightScale, Inc. All other products and services may be trademarks or servicemarks of their respective owners.