Skipping chef server


Hello, I have a scenario where I want to use chef only for applying changes on the nodes BUT not using chef server at all. Have few questions here -

  1. I have read all over internet and it says that basic 3 components needed for chef are Workstation - Server - Node. But no where I could find any article that says if the workstation can be used to apply changes on the node directly i.e. NO chef server at all.

Is it possible?
If yes, can you please share the link to configure workstation/node

  1. We have installed Workstation on one Windows machine and Node on another Windows machine (all instructions followed as per the documentation) and I believe we have applied everything available on internet to connect from workstation to node but big time failure :frowning_face:

Any pointers here. Not using ssh.

  1. If answer to #1 is yes, then do I need to deploy agent on the Node??
  2. If answer to #1 is yes, then do I need to deploy Chef DK on Workstation to test the connectivity alone [from Workstation to Node]??


You can use "chef-client --local" to keep Chef cookbooks, roles, environments, and even node configurations in a git repository, check it out, and apply it locally with no Chef Server in the mix anywhere. It works best with chefdk, which contains Berkshelf to assemble the local copies of the cookbooks. chefdk includes and is compatible with the Chef client in the chef package.

See my tools at for an example.


Hi Nkadel
Thanks for response.
But we want to deploy cookbooks and recipes from chef-workstation to chef-node.
Both are running on separate VM machines.



@deepaksingla have you looked at Chef Workstation? This was initially released earlier this year and is probably the best fit for the scenario you have described.



Hi Nathenharvey

I am working on window environment 2012r2. I want to access chef-client node without ssh key.
Is there any commend to access chef-client node using winrm command?