How Do You Troubleshoot the Puppet Problem “Error 500 on SERVER: … Could not find node statement with name ‘default’ or “?

Problem scenario
You run the Puppet agent on a server but you receive this error:

Error: Could not retrieve catalog from remote server: Error 500 on SERVER: Server Error: Could not find node statement with name 'default' or ',,, ip-172-31-20-105' on node
Warning: Not using cache on failed catalog
Error: Could not retrieve catalog; skipping run

What should you do?

Is your Puppet manifest using a regex? For example, if your manifest is supposed to use wildcard variables and match the FQDN of the Puppet Agent node that gives this error, the variables do not seem to be matching up. Try to re-write the manifest so there is a "default" or explicit FQDN of the Puppet Agent. Then this error will go away.

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