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Building network automation solutions

9 module online course

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Updated: First Set of Building Next-Generation Data Centers Self-Study Materials

When I started the Building Next-Generation Data Centers online course, I didn’t have the automated infrastructure to support it, so I had to go with the next best solution: a reasonably-flexible Content Management System, and Mediawiki turned out to be a pretty good option.

In the meantime, we developed a full-blown course support system, included guided self-paced study (available with most ipSpace.net online course), and progress tracking. It was time to migrate the data center material into the same format.

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Schneier’s Law Applied to Networking

A while ago I stumbled upon Schneier’s law (must-read):

Any person can invent a security system so clever that she or he can't think of how to break it.

I’m pretty sure there’s a networking equivalent:

Any person can create a clever network design that is so complex that she or he can't figure out how it will fail in production.

I know I’ve been there with my early OSPF network designs.

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Updated: Building Next-Generation Data Centers Live Sessions

After fixing the Building Network Automation Solutions materials, I decided to tackle the next summer janitorial project: creating standard curriculum pages for Building Next Generation Data Centers online course and splitting it into more granular modules (the course is ~150 hours long, and some modules have more than 40 hours of self-study materials).

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Another Benefit of Open-Source Networking Software

You probably know my opinion on nerd knobs and the resulting complexity, but sometimes you desperately need something to get the job done.

In traditional vendor-driven networking world, you might be able to persuade your vendor to implement the knob (you think) you need in 3 years by making it a mandatory requirement for a $10M purchase order. In open-source world you implement the knob, write the unit tests, and submit a pull request.

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Updated: Building Network Automation Solutions Materials and Descriptions

The materials and descriptions for the Building Network Automation Solutions online course got a slight makeover: all live session recordings are now part of self-study materials, and the module description pages use consistent format for self-study materials and live sessions.

Next on the janitor’s list: a similar makeover for the Data Center online course.

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New my.ipspace.net Design

During the last weeks I migrated the whole my.ipspace.net site (apart from the workgroup administration pages) to the new ipSpace.net design. Most of the changes should be transparent (apart from the pages looking better than before ;); I also made a few more significant changes:

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New on ipSpace.net: Interviews and Guest Podcasts

You can find most of the interviews and guest podcasts I did in the last few years on this web page (also accessible as Resources → Interviews from the new menu).

During the summer break, I’m publishing blog posts about the projects I’m working on – as you can see, they include web site maintenance and other janitorial tasks. Regular blog posts will return in autumn.

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Overview of ipSpace.net Training Options

Describe the differences between various ipSpace.net training options has been on my to-do list for ages, but I successfully managed to ignore it till I deployed the new top-level menu that contains training category.

Our designers never considered menu items without a corresponding link, so I got an ugly mess that needed to be cleaned up either by fixing the CSS or writing the overview document.

End result: a high-level document describing how ipSpace.net webinars, courses and workshops fit into the bigger picture.

During the summer break, I’m publishing blog posts about the projects I’m working on. Regular blog posts will return in autumn.

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Free Webinars and Videos Are Now Easier to Spot

Another summer break project: replacing the stars next to webinar names in descriptions of various technology areas (example: Data Center) with something more useful. Turns out that marking the webinar title as being Free or having Free items works really well.

Bonus feature: clicking on show free content shows you the content available with free subscription.

During the summer break, I’m publishing blog posts about the projects I’m working on. Regular blog posts will return in autumn.

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Updated Design on blog.ipspace.net

I synced the CSS used on blog.ipspace.net with the one used on the main web site. There should be no visible changes apart from a few minor fixes in color scheme and the main column being a bit narrower, but if you spot any errors please let me know.

During the summer break, I’m doing much-needed web site maintenance. Regular blog posts will return in autumn.

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Review: Ansible for Networking Engineers

An engineer attending Ansible for Networking Engineers online course sent me this feedback:

This is a great place to learn Ansible and Network Automation from scratch. Starting with an emphasis on the fundamentals (YAML, JSON, Jinja2, how to group your network devices for automation, etc.) you progressively build up towards useful network automation.

He particularly liked the additional features that are part of any ipSpace.net online course:

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Goodbye, content.ipspace.net

It turns out that while I cannot bring myself to writing or creating other content during the summer break, it feels perfectly fine to be a janitor and fix small things on the web site.

One of the long-outstanding items: get rid of the free content web site that never went where I wanted it to go… one can do only so much in 24 hours. All the features available on content.ipspace.net are now part of the main ipSpace.net web site including pointers to free content and list of free presentations.

During the summer break, I’m publishing blog posts about the projects I’m working on. Regular blog posts will return in autumn.

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Feedback: Data Center Infrastructure for Networking Engineers

When I created the Data Center Infrastructure for Networking Engineers webinar, I wanted to reach these goals:

  • Understand the data center acronym soup;
  • Build a conceptual framework of the data center technologies and solutions.

Every now and then I get feedback from a happy attendee telling me how the webinar helped them. Here’s what I got earlier this month:

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Network Infrastructure as Code in Network Automation Online Course

In mid-May, I ran an onsite network automation workshop, and the manager organizing the workshop for his team invited me to a dinner with his peers. Not surprisingly, they wanted to hear about the topics covered in the workshop, and as soon as I mentioned Network-Infrastructure-as-Code several of them said “yes, that definitely needs to be covered.

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