Building Network Automation Solutions - February 2018 session

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Getting Started live session

32:23 Course Introduction and Discussion Questions

2018Q1 - Course Introduction 23:33 2018-02-14
2018Q1 - Getting Started QA 8:50 2018-02-14

1:39:46 Network Infrastructure as Code

In the Network Infrastructure as Code presentation Mark Prior described how he automated a private cloud infrastructure, and how he uses infrastructure-as-code principles to build reliable data center networking infrastructure.

Automation Cloud Infrastructure 37:26 2018-02-15

In the first part of his presentation Mark described a large-scale private cloud automation project he worked on.

Network Infrastructure as Code 17:58 2018-02-15

After introducing one of his network automation projects, Mark described how he uses infrastructure-as-code principles in his work.

Introduction to Using Ansible in Network Automation 16:21 2018-02-15

Mark spent ~15 minutes describing the principles of Ansible. As you might already be familiar with them, we moved them into a separate video.

Demo: Network Infrastructure as Code 28:01 2018-02-15

The final part of Mark's presentation was a hands-on demo combining Git (version control), Jenkins (CI/CD pipeline), Ansible (configuration deployment), Python (post-deployment checks) and Slack (ops team notification).

Slide Deck: Network Infrastructure as Code 1.6M 2018-02-15

1:13:58 Security and Reliability

Another very important aspect when designing and building a network automation solution is its security and reliability. The security aspects are not much different than what you'd usually have to deal with when installing a network management system, and the reliability aspects should be familiar to any software developer. However, it's still worth spelling them out.

Securing a Network Automation Solution 28:20 2018-02-14
Increasing the Reliability of a Network Automation Solution 14:20 2018-03-21
Ansible Vault 31:18 2018-03-21
Slide Deck: Security and Reliability 2.6M 2018-02-13

1:57:34 Event-Driven Network Automation

After automating device configurations and service provisioning you might start tackling the holy grail of network automation: changing your network behavior based on real-time external event.

In his March 2018 presentation David Gee described the fundamentals of Event-Driven Automation (EDA), including:

  • Why would you want event-driven automation and what are its pitfalls?
  • What exactly is an event and what's the difference between signals and events?
  • How would the architecture of an event-driven solution look like?
  • Why do we need event normalization and correlation?

He concluded with an overview of open-source and commercial tools you could use when building an event-driven solution and demonstrated the concepts with two simple examples using StackStorm and Salt.

Introduction to Event-Driven Network Automation 27:41 2018-03-21
What Is an Event? 17:11 2018-03-21
Event Normalization and Correlation 31:33 2018-03-21
Event-Driven Automation Solutions 16:50 2018-03-21
Demonstrations 24:19 2018-03-21
Slide Deck: Event-Driven Automation 7.9M 2018-03-16

2:30:50 Using Salt for Event-Driven Network Automation

In February 2018, Mircea Ulinic described Salt, a highly-scalable automation tool used in very large environments like LinkedIn and CloudFlare.

His presentation covered:

  • Salt architecture, terminology, configuration and operations
  • Network automation (including configuration and state management)
  • Event-driven automation.

1:05:37 Introduction to Salt

Network Automation Prerequisites 10:17 2018-02-28
Introduction to Salt 19:48 2018-02-28
Nomenclature and Configuration 20:00 2018-02-28
Using Salt 15:32 2018-02-28

1:13:08 Network Automation with Salt

Network Device Configuration Management 23:50 2018-02-28
Managing Device State 24:43 2018-02-28
Event-Driven Automation 24:35 2018-02-28

12:05 Additional Resources

Introduction to Salt Advanced Topics 12:05 2018-02-28
Slide Deck 2.3M 2018-02-28

2:10:06 Network Automation with Chef

Chef is not a most commonly-used network automation tool, but you might still encounter it in environments where it's already used for system management. In this section you'll learn what Chef is, how to set it up, and how to configure Nexus OS switches using on-device Chef agent.

Why Would You Use Chef or Puppet 16:22 2018-04-04
Chef Overview 31:45 2018-04-04
Puppet Overview 10:27 2018-04-04
Implementing Chef 31:03 2018-04-04
Chef for Nexus OS 27:40 2018-04-04
EVPN Use Case 12:49 2018-04-04

Additional Information

Slide Deck 5.0M 2018-04-04
Installing Chef and Using Chef with Nexus 9000 601K 2018-04-08

21:22 Organizing Your Data and Code

Once you start working on real-life automation challenges, the single-directory-per-project approach quickly turns into a morass - it's time to organize your code and data into an easy-to-understand hierarchical structure. This section describes several approaches that you might apply to small proof-of-concept solutions or large production-grade projects.

Organize Your Code and Data 21:22 2018-04-18
Slide Deck 2.5M 2018-02-27

1:04:21 Manage Network Device Configurations with Git

One of the first steps on anyone's automation journey should be tight control of device configurations using a version control system. This section describes how you can use Git and GitLab/GitHub to track changes to device configurations, correlate changes to tickets or business requirements, implement review and approval workflow, and finally use Git as the single source of (configuration) truth.

Introduction to Network Device Configuration Version Control 13:53 2018-04-18
Track Changes to Device Configurations with Version Control Repository 13:35 2018-05-20
Approve Changes Done to Device Configurations with Merge/Pull Requests 10:31 2018-04-18
Use Feature Branches to Document Device Configuration Changes 7:24 2018-04-18
Use Git to Change/Approve/Deploy Device Configurations 18:58 2018-04-18
Slide Deck 2.7M 2018-04-17
You started this section on %started% Mark completed