Network config backups – just the beginning

An emergency switch replacement can ruin your day. However, having network config backups is not enough. Restoring full service may not be as easy as just copying the running configuration from your RANCID CVS repo, or your colleagues hard drive. Restoring the ‘identity’ of your original switch is a multi-step and somewhat complicated process.

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NXOS – Bash scripting at the CLI

Every now and again you see a snippet of complex CLI syntax that gives you pause for thought. Last week I saw the command below in a change procedure. The command was being used to verify baseline BGP neighbor state and re-verify after a policy change.

show ip bgp peer-template eBGP_Peers | egrep default | sed 's/default://'  \
| tr -s '  |\n' | tr -s ' ' '\n' | sed 's/^/show ip bgp nei /' \
| sed 's/$/ adver | grep \//' | vsh

I was a little daunted by the complexity of the command at first. I was slightly embarrassed too, as I had no idea what the command did. I learned that this command finds all neighbors which use a named bgp peer-template, and lists the prefixes they advertise. In this post I’ll break down the command and share the love about NXOS CLI and bash scripting. Continue reading

Career – Effectiveness and trust

As a network engineer, you take pride in your hard earned skills, and so you should.  You’ve learned how to design networks. You’ve learned how to install, upgrade and configure routers.  You’ve figured out how to sniff out and fix faults.  If you study your craft and hone your technical skills then you deserve to be rewarded.  However, unless you can work with the people and process in an organization, you won’t get the career success you deserve.

Getting Started

When you start out in network engineering, everything takes too long. I like to call it the first-time-tax.  Everything is new and there are many things to be learned.  You have to  move slowly and ask for help.  Eventually you learn how to do the majority of tasks, and make fewer mistakes.  The more you know about networking, the more tasks you can get done in your limited time.  You have become technically ‘proficient’.

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