Managing EOS configuration with Puppet and Templates

Availability, stability, and effort (time) to complete maintenance are key factors for network management. Taking advantage of automated configuration management tools such as Puppet enable network engineers to ensure consistency in configurations, test changes before applying them to production networks, and multiply their effort when making changes that touch multiple devices. Puppet is a versatile tool which can require a ramp up period. However, there are significant long-term benefits when multiple organizations (server, application, etc.) within your company share the same tool set and knowledge. The introduction of the eos_switchconfig Puppet resource type to the EOS module eases the transition for...
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CVP APIs: A Non-Programmer’s Guide

1. What are CVP APIs? Most CloudVision Portal (CVP) users are familiar with the web user interface (UI) that facilitates network provisioning, inventory management, tasks management, change control and so on.  CVP application programming interfaces (APIs) offer an alternative means of realizing the same functionality.  The key difference is that, with the CVP APIs, the functionality is realized over a programmatic interface (i.e typically by a piece of software communicating with another piece of software) rather than by a user navigating over a web page and clicking and/or typing.  Figure 1 shows a simplified example of these two methods of...
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Datacenter Deployment Automated

Planning Methodology There is a lot of talk about automation in the datacenter which indeed saves time but a lot of effort still goes into planning. After all, failing to plan is planning to fail. I needed a way to start automating some of the planning and repetitive tasks needed for deploying the same blueprint across various sites. One of the bigger tasks is the IP Plan and making sure that the correct IP’s get used in configurations. Additionally making sure that the same methodology gets used on different sites. Initially, I set out to use a very nice utility...
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Arista + Ansible – Getting Started

The Ansible 2.1 release made it easier than ever to manage Arista switches.  The following article describes how to leverage Ansible for EOS configuration management. The Basics If you’re brand new to Ansible, it might be helpful to take a spin through their Overview and Getting Started just to familiarize yourself with some of the basic concepts. The Ansible documentation has a great introduction to Ansible for Networking – definitely check it out before reading on. EOS Modules  Ansible modules do all of the heavy-lifting, and there’s a module to do just about anything you could possible think of, from copying a...
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Monitoring EOS with tcollector and OpenTSDB

EOS is a Linux distribution (based on Fedora), which means, among other things, that it can be monitored like any Linux server running Fedora.  In this post we show how to package a popular open-source monitoring framework, tcollector, as an EOS extension. A bit of history OpenTSDB is a distributed time series database used for infrastructure monitoring in many medium to large scale environments.  It uses a push model, meaning that OpenTSDB is not responsible for pulling monitoring from a set list of targets to monitor, rather the targets themselves are responsible for pushing their monitoring data to OpenTSDB, be...
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Arista + Ansible: A Dramatically Simple New Approach

On February 18th, 2016 Ansible (Red Hat) announced a new initiative to help bring years of systems administration experience to the network by creating a new set of modules built specifically for network devices.  This announcement signals a new direction for Ansible, a technology that previously omitted native support for the majority of network vendors.  What does this announcement mean and how can you get started with your Arista devices? A Brief History Astute readers may be wondering, “Why does this matter? I can already manage my Arista device with Ansible.” That’s true, but the announcement from Ansible changes the approach we...
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