Backing up network gear

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Julien spoke about backing up network gear. He said you should have a file repository of the OS running on each device. You should have a copy of the current and the new firmwares in your devices. It might also be a great idea to have some of your archive on a usb stick, and to have printed instructions on how to do a recovery.

Julien says that it's best to have an automated pull technique for managing the configuration of your devices. So something that regularly downloads the configuration. He suggests a tool called RANCID, which is a mix of perl and expect.

So once you've got rancid going you get a history of configuration changes. You get hardware inventories, and you get filesystem details (maybe not the contents of all the files, but at least if they have changed). With this information you can extract interesting stuff, such as the firmware versions you are running.

Julien generates a network diagram automatically from the information. Apparently rancid can also be used to push configuration up from templates. Julien mentioned netomata. He says it's a bit slow to start writing your templates for it.

He mentioned 'notch', which is a CLI abstraction layer written in python. Built ontop of notch is PUNC, a rancid replacement, and Mr. CLI, wihch is clusterssh for routers. http://code.google.com/p/punc/. There are some NANOG talks on rancid and netomata. Rancid http://bit.ly/hDSEaL and netomata http://bit.ly/f3Vpwe.

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This page contains a single entry by Geoff Crompton published on January 25, 2011 3:06 PM.

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