vague puppet error messages with broken yaml files
If you get one of this errors:
Error: Could not retrieve catalog from remote server: Error 400 on SERVER: (<unknown>): found character that cannot start any token while scanning for the next token at line 1297 column 3 Warning: Not using cache on failed catalog Error: Could not retrieve catalog; skipping run Error: Could not retrieve catalog from remote server: Error 400 on SERVER: undefined method `empty?' for nil:NilClass at /etc/puppet/environments/production/manifests/nodes.pp:1 on node example.makandra.de Warning: Not using cache on failed catalog Error: Could not retrieve catalog; skipping run
it's probably an error in your hiera yaml files.
In my case it was a facter variable I've used without quotes after a puppetmaster update (it was working for months before that).
I've debugged the error like this:
- deleted all yaml files one by one until the error didn't happend
- comment out all lines in this yaml and removed the comments step by step until I've found the bad line