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NetBox Ansible Collection: Installation

·1154 words·6 mins
This is the first post as I start to look at the NetBox Ansible Collection. This is an impressive collection with modules for several of the NetBox applications, a query plugin, and an inventory plugin. This will take a deeper dive into several of the components of the inventory plugin, but not all of the options. The documentation for all of the collection can be found at: ReadTheDocs: Galaxy Page: https://galaxy.

Jekyll - Adding a URL Redirection

·734 words·4 mins
Recently I had some discussions with Nick Russo on some URL redirection changes he was making for his content. I’m not going to take any of his thunder of what he is doing, and that is quite awesome. I decided that I wanted to take a look at that as well within my domain/blog using the Jekyll approach. This is going to be my short post regarding the steps I took to add the URL redirection setup to my personal blog page - josh-v.

Ansible + NetBox: Getting Next Prefix / IP

·1488 words·7 mins
This originates from a conversation had on Twitter about how to get the IP Prefix information from an IPAM tool, specifically NetBox using Ansible. There are a couple of methodologies to go through, and I had originally started down the path of using the URI module. Which could be done. The more elegant solution is to use the NetBox Ansible Collections to handle the logic for you! Let’s take a look.

Home Assistant Prometheus Exporting Setup

·614 words·3 mins
There does not appear to be a complete set of documentation pieces available for setting up Prometheus on the Home Assistant platform. This post will take you along on my journey of setting up the Home Assistant to get metrics from it. The link for the documentation is a good start at getting Prometheus installed. Starting Prometheus # Edit your configuration.yaml file Add in a key of prometheus: Add in any parameters you may need, but just they key alone is enough to start the exporter Once you have started the exporter, I was still getting a 404 not found.

2020 Blog Update

·1149 words·6 mins
I’ve changed a few things on the site. Sorry about that! URLs have changed. Over the past week or so I have been working through making some what originally were small updates to the blog, that turned into a little too much effort. I was hoping to add a little bit of polish to the site while keeping the content in place. Earlier in 2020, maybe even back in 2019 I had become aware of Hashnode from the posts of David Flores - aka NetPanda who is on the Hashnode side at https://davidban77.

Practicing Network Automation with GNS3

·541 words·3 mins
In an earlier post I took a look at how to setup EVE-NG to get access to virtualized network devices and topologies. This post is going to take a look at how to setup GNS3 systems to allow access. In the overall topology that is a “home” network sits a device that supports a routing protocol, usually either OSPF or BGP. What is known to work at an inexpensive price point is the Ubiquiti EdgeRouter X.

Ansible for Enterprise

·844 words·4 mins
One of the appealing features that I have towards working with Ansible is that it is able to automate components across the entire Enterprise IT stacks. Rather than having to stitch together your network, server, and desktop automation tools, there is at least one automation tool that will work with just about your entire IT stack. In this I will take a high level overview of some of the features that are there for you to explore.

Docker for Automation Environment - Ansible 2.10

·1818 words·9 mins
Docker is a terrific solution for making a consistent working environment. It’s been about a year or so since I built my very first own Docker container. I had always known why you use a container, but was always intimidated too much so to even get started. I am glad that I did get started and am off on my journey of using Docker containers. Let me jump into the problem and why?

Using Apple Automator to Open Projects

·887 words·5 mins
Today I’m going to walk through the newest part of my personal workflow for working with projects. Straight to the point, this is going to be using Apple Automator to quickly open your project that you wish to work on within VS Code, and presumably PyCharm as well. Problem #So what is the problem that I’m trying to solve? I am one that generally likes the workspace concept within VS Code, but I don’t like having to maintain workspace files.

Ansible Cisco IOS User Module

·1911 words·9 mins
In this post I will be taking a look at some of the usability setup of managing Cisco IOS devices with the Ansible Cisco IOS User Module. This can be very helpful for setting up managed user accounts on systems, or the backup user accounts when you have TACACS or RADIUS setup. The module documentation overall looks complete from what I have done for user account management on devices in the past.

Ansible Cisco ios_interfaces module

·2104 words·10 mins
This has become a post about the ios_interfaces module with documentation that can be found Ansible ios_interfaces doc. Originally I was going to write about the deprecations for just the Cisco IOS modules. Then as I investigated further, I had found that there are many more modules that are being deprecated. In this post I will take a closer look at the differences between the ios_interface and ios_vlan modules that I had written posts on last year and what their new counter parts look like.


Disney Plus Streaming Bandwidth

·622 words·3 mins
This will be a brief departure from the automation focused attention that I have been giving to this blog over the past year or so. This week in the United States was the launch of Disney+ streaming service. I have subscribed to it at this point and have found some interesting data based on SNMP polling my network. This post is about the bandwidth that I am seeing used, not about anything about the service, or if another service is better.

Ansible differences between ios command and cli command

·1947 words·10 mins
In an earlier post I covered the differences between ios_config and cli_config. However I did not cover what the difference was between ios_command and cli_command. Most of the items covered there remain the same. So this will be a post that mostly gets straight to it and sees what the difference is. A reminder that I am also putting playbooks used here out on Github. You can find this at: https://github.

EVE-NG for Automation Practice and Testing

·983 words·5 mins
As I restarted looking at how I’m continuing my education on the Network Automation and certification realm I asked the question “How are you simulating your network environment?” At the same time there has been thought on the idea of leveraging cloud resources to gain experience there. First requirement for me is that whatever tool/simulation set that I use it has to work. That being said, I need to be able to generate configurations, connect devices to each other, and have packets flow through the simulated network, just like any other network.

Ansible IOS BGP Module

·2078 words·10 mins
In this post I’m going to be taking a deeper dive into the new in Ansible 2.8 IOS BGP module. This may be one of the more complex modules to date and I’ll try to make it as simple as possible. For a reminder about the BGP protocol is that this is the predominate protocol that runs the Internet. It is used to peer up with other companies and is what helps to make the Internet great.

Ansible ASA OG Module

·3957 words·19 mins
Today we are taking a look at the newest module out for Cisco ASA Ansible module - asa_og. This one is particularly exciting for the configurations that are being managed heavily with Object Groups on firewalls. I’m particularly excited to review the asa_og module, time to dig in. New in this post is the finished playbooks being added to Github. I’m hoping that this may be helpful and I am uploading the contents to Github for more to be able to see and get access to if necessary.

Ansible ASA Command Module

·727 words·4 mins
Today will be a touch shorter post, but it is good to be back at it. In this post I will be taking a quick look around at the asa_command module, as we start down the path with looking at the ASA modules in Ansible. This is spurned on a little bit by Ansible 2.8 coming out with an Object Group specific module. I will be looking into that further in a future post.

Ansible Saving Cisco Configs to NVRAM with Cisco Specific Modules

·1829 words·9 mins
Today I’m going to take a look at a method to be able to save the configuration of a Cisco device to NVRAM (copy run start). I will be taking a look at multiple Cisco platforms to save changes done during an Ansible Playbook to NVRAM. There are options to save the configuration on every change within the modules such as ios_config or cli_config, however, this can slow down the execution of your playbook.

Ansible Cisco IOS Interface Module

·1899 words·9 mins
Update: ios_interface is to be deprecated as of Ansible 2.13 In this post I will be taking a deeper look at the ios_interface module. This module is used to configure individual interfaces on a Cisco IOS device. The documentation for the module is located here. In this module I did have to dig into the actual Python file, and that is located here. Edit: Had to update the link due to the change in Ansible coming in 2.

Ansible IOS VLAN

·2216 words·11 mins
Back to it finally. Going to take a look at the Ansible module ios_vlan. The purpose of this is to provide a declarative module for managing VLANs on IOS devices. In this I will be using IOSv-L2 images. There are a few interesting quirks (as I will call it) within the parameters for the module. Module Documentation #First, the module documentation page is here. Getting Started with the module #VLANs pre-module work #Starting out the switch is pretty bare as it relates to the number of VLANs.