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motd_chef_status (7) Versions 0.2.0

Configures MOTD to display system and Chef information

cookbook 'motd_chef_status', '= 0.2.0', :supermarket
cookbook 'motd_chef_status', '= 0.2.0'
knife supermarket install motd_chef_status
knife supermarket download motd_chef_status
Quality 83%

MOTD Chef Status Cookbook

Maintainer: OIT Systems Engineering (


This cookbook configures Message of the Day to display system information and Chef status.

  • Standard OS, machine, and hostname information
  • Chef node name, run success status, last run timing

It also clears some distro-standard MOTD fragments.

MOTD is dynamic on every supported distro.
When it is available and works on the platform, update-motd is used. Otherwise profile is used as a fallback.

The MOTD message is reasonably standard across platforms.
This cookbook does not configure SSH, so any login message will remain.
Effort has been made to remove fragments from standard distributions and cloud-provider fragments, but is it infeasible to remove every possible fragment while respecting attributes that govern their removal.



This cookbook requires Chef 13+


Supported Platform Families:

  • Debian
    • Ubuntu, Mint
  • Red Hat Enterprise Linux
    • Amazon, CentOS, Oracle
  • OpenSuse

Platforms validated via Test Kitchen:

  • Ubuntu
  • Debian
  • CentOS
  • Oracle
  • Fedora
  • Amazon
  • OpenSuse


  • This cookbook should support any recent Linux variant with the caveat that it will not clear novel MOTD fragments.


This cookbook provides one resources for configuring and installing a MOTD fragment. The fragment will be placed in the appropriate directory and given the appropriate extension for the platform.


A motd_fragment manages a single script fragment (file).


Two action are provided.

  • create - Post condition is that the fragment exists in the appropriate directory to be executed.
  • delete - Post condition is that the fragment exists in neither /etc/update-motd.d/ nor /etc/profile.d/.


This resource has four attributes.

  • fragment_name - Defaults to nil. The stem of the fragment file, if nil the name of the resource is used.
  • template_cookbook - Required. The name of the cookbook where the fragment is located.
  • template_source - Required. The name of the template to use for the fragment, inside template_cookbook/templates/.
  • template_variables - Defaults to {}.



This recipe installs and configures dynamic MOTD by calling all of the other recipes.




This recipe installs update-motd on platforms that support it.




This recipe removes possibly all pre-existing MOTD fragments to keep the login uncluttered and the Che warning prominent.


  • node['motd_chef_status']['remove_existing_fragments'] - Defaults to true. Determines if existing fragments are removed. If false, the attributes below have no effect.
  • node['motd_chef_status']['remove_document_fragments'] - Defaults to true. Determines if documentation-related fragments are removed.
  • node['motd_chef_status']['remove_status_fragments'] - Defaults to false. Determines if status-related fragments are removed.
  • node['motd_chef_status']['remove_update_fragments'] - Defaults to false. Determines is update-related fragments are removed.


This recipe installs possibly two fragments, one a banner and the other a Chef warning and status.


  • node['motd_chef_status']['add_header_fragment'] - Defaults to true. Determines if the header fragment is installed.
  • node['motd_chef_status']['header_position'] - Defaults to '00'. Determines the position of the header fragment. The default position places the header before anything else.

  • node['motd_chef_status']['add_chef_fragment'] - Defaults to true. Determines if the Chef status/warning fragment is installed.

  • node['motd_chef_status']['chef_status_position'] - Defaults to '99'. Determines the position of the Chef fragment. The default position is at the end of the MOTD.


The motd_fragment resource can be used as below.

motd_fragment 'motd-header' do
  fragment_name '00-header'
  template_cookbook 'my_cookbook'
  template_source ''
  template_variables {}

Dependent cookbooks

chef_run_recorder >= 0.0.0

Contingent cookbooks

There are no cookbooks that are contingent upon this one.

Changelog for MOTD Chef Status Cookbook


  • Added FQDN and owner to header


  • Initial release

Collaborator Number Metric

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Failure: Cookbook has 0 collaborators. A cookbook must have at least 2 collaborators to pass this metric.

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