Building Network Automation Solutions - February 2019 session

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Last modified on 2020-02-09 (release notes)


36:23 Course Introduction

This section introduces the speakers in the Spring 2019 course and the topics of their presentations... but there's more: we spent most of the time discussing the best way to navigate through the enormous amount of course materials.

Spring 2019 Speakers 10:53 2019-12-22
Finding Your Way Around the Course Materials 18:04 2019-12-22
Spring 2019 Introduction QA 7:26 2019-12-22

1:59:10 Building a Virtual Lab

Building a virtual lab was one of the largest hurdles faced by many course attendees, so we asked Matt Oswalt (the author of NRE Labs) to explain his approach to building virtual labs and the tools he uses to build them.

Virtual or Physical Labs 25:44 2019-02-20
Local Virtual Labs 25:43 2019-02-20
Local Virtual Labs Demo 22:53 2019-02-20
Cloud-Based Labs 13:11 2019-02-20
DIY Cloud Labs 31:39 2019-02-20
Slide Deck 759K 2019-02-17

More Information

Build a Network Automation Lab
Automate Your Network Labs with Ansible and GNS3

2:47:42 The Boring Stuff Nobody Tells You About

In the first half of his presentation David Gee focused on an extremely important topic: workflow mapping and sequence diagrams.

The second part of his talk covered a plethora of topics, from test-driven automation and imperative versus declarative programming to handling errors, removing magic and creating your own standards.

Introduction 18:24 2019-03-07
Workflow Mapping 41:28 2019-03-07
Workflow Mapping QA 12:14 2019-03-07
Workflow Dimensionality 16:58 2019-03-07
Other Boring but Important Stuff 24:41 2019-03-07
Removing Magic 9:52 2019-03-07
Maintenance and Standards 19:31 2019-03-07
Summary 8:03 2019-03-07
Demo 16:31 2019-03-07
Slide Deck 13M 2019-03-06

1:39:41 Zero-Touch Provisioning

Zero-Touch Provisioning (ZTP) is an obvious candidate for an network automation, as the impact of incorrectly-provisioned new devices is usually minimal. However, even though every vendor claims to have a ZTP solution, building an end-to-end system integrated with your workflow remains a hard problem.

In his presentation Patrick Ogenstad explained the basics of ZTP, described typical ZTP components, presented a solution you can use to build dynamic device configuration files, and answered tons of attendee questions.

ZTP Introduction 24:05 2019-03-27
ZTP Components 12:49 2019-03-27
Building a Dynamic Solution 32:29 2019-03-27
Questions and Answers 30:18 2019-03-27

Additional Information

Zero-Touch Provisioning Slide Deck 7.9M 2019-03-19
Zero-Touch Provisioning DIY Tutorial
PDF version of ZTP DIY Tutorial 2.5M 2019-03-19

2:21:03 Testing Network Automation Systems

Kristian Larsson described a testing methodology based on the approach his team is using to test the network automation system they're building for Deutsche Telekom Terastream project.

He started with unit and system tests, described various approaches to device mocking, explained how to do end-to-end system tests, and shown how you can use vrnetlab (an open source virtual network lab environment focused on testing use cases) in Continuous Integration pipeline.

In the second part of his presentation he described how you could test correctness of BGP configurations with docker-based BGP feeds, and concluded with a discussion of robustness and feature flags.

Testing Overview 16:02 2019-04-10
Unit and System Tests 18:46 2019-04-10
End-to-End Tests 12:36 2019-04-10
vrnetlab 24:42 2019-04-10
Using vrnetlab 27:54 2019-04-10
Testing BGP 18:23 2019-04-10
Robustness, Safety and Feature Flags 22:40 2019-04-10
Slide Deck 19M 2019-04-09

1:19:59 Automating Disaster Recovery with Ansible

Mitja Robas and a team of software developers created a fully-automated disaster recovery solution for a customer who wanted to migrate from an existing stretched VLAN architecture to a truly redundant multi-data-center design.

In his presentation Mitja described the underlying network architecture, automation workflows, and the overall architecture of the automation solution.

Introduction 12:32 2019-04-24
Network Architecture Overview 22:39 2019-04-24
Automation Overview 15:15 2019-04-24
Automation Workflows 12:05 2019-04-24
Putting It All Together 8:26 2019-04-24
Challenges 9:02 2019-04-24
Slide Deck 5.2M 2019-04-23
Code Samples 24K 2019-04-24

The solution is not open-sourced, so Mitja provided a few code samples to give you an idea how the code looks like.

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