Building network automation solutions

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Upcoming Event: Network Automation Workshop

I spent most of last year developing SDN-related content, resulting in pretty successful 2-day workshop and 20+ hours of online content. However, I fully agree with Matt Oswalt that network automation matters even more than lofty centralized ideas, so it was time to focus on that area.

As always, the easiest way to push yourself is to commit to a deadline, so I agreed to do a network automation workshop during the Troopers 16 event. Here’s what it will cover:

Introduction to network automation – what is it, why should we use it, and what tools are available if you want to get started.

Hierarchy of network needs based on an excellent post by Jeremy Stretch. We’ll start with how we can improve the operations of existing networks, how you can slowly introduce abstracted network state, use it for automated network provisioning, and finally what can be done in the area of automatic remediation.

Network automation tools – when and how would you use Puppet, Ansible, Git, Gerrit and Jenkins.

After the introductory section we’ll focus on one of the most common entry-level automation tasks: generating and deploying device configurations using tools better than Excel and Putty. After describing the big picture we’ll go deeper into:

  • Generating network state data models and encoding them in YAML;
  • Using Jinja2 to generate network device configurations;
  • Using Ansible for network automation.

In the Ansible section we’ll explore a few other rabbit trails, including:

  • Executing commands on network devices and getting usable data back from them;
  • Pushing configurations into devices using SCP and NAPALM.

Finally, we’ll briefly visit NETCONF, see what it’s all about, what YANG is, and whether they are useful in network automation scenarios.

Interested? There are only a few places left, so hurry up and register ASAP.


  1. All of those are of great interest to me, but I'm in the US - will the talk be recorded and available somewhere? Or available to buy? These are exactly the kinds of questions I'm trying to answer in our network right now.
    1. We'll fix this small challenge ;)

      The materials will eventually find their way into webinars. The roadmap is already online but it's mostly empty at the moment.

      I'll probably run another workshop in US sometime in autumn, and it will most likely be a combo of SDN/SDDC/Network Automation materials spread over a week.

      There might also be an online course covering the same topics. Register into my SDN mailing list and I'll keep you posted ;)
  2. Aloha,
    will you also run another workshops in Europe as well?
    The trooper is a full 2days conference,
    and I know some guys, who are only interested to see you Ivan and especially this topics like network automation, SDN, Yang, Ansible, Tail-F,...
    1. Not a problem - they can register for "1 Day of Troopers Trainings" @ $990 and attend just my workshop.

      I might run a longer (2-day) version of this workshop, or a combo of SDN + network automation workshop somewhere in Europe, but can't promise anything.
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