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Nautobot App Baking Cookies

·555 words·3 mins
Just recently released at the beginning of 2024 is a project that I am super excited to see in the open source by Network to Code. This is the Nautobot App cookiecutter template. This may already be the biggest thing to become available for Network Automation in 2024. I know, its fresh at this point in the year, but this is something that is going to make getting started with your own Nautobot Application so much quicker.


2023 Automation Review: Top 3

·542 words·3 mins
The year of 2023 I think may have had some of the biggest leaps in the Network Automation capabilities that are being delivered by some of the best in the business. With Nautobot’s Golden Config App adding the ability to complete configuration remediation and Ansible release Event Driven Ansible, there are a couple of powerful tools to help you with your Network Automation. And all with a great new conference addition specific to Network Automation.

Nautobot: How I Use Tags For VMs

·655 words·4 mins
In my home environment I am leveraging Nautobot as my source of truth. This is for the network, which is probably not all that interesting in my home environment, and my virtual machines. Why am I tracking my virtual machines in Nautobot? Simple, to help automate them. I think that this is a clever methodology to help use tags and to get automation working within the environment. This same type of thing may be applicable to your network environment as well.

Nautobot Environment File

·814 words·4 mins
Within Nautobot there are many ways to be able to get the Nautobot environment running. Environment variables are used quite a bit in the Docker environment following best practice principles set forth in the 12 Factor App. The use of environment variables is helpful for working through the various stages of an application to production. The installation instructions leverage a single environment variable NAUTOBOT_ROOT and that is set in the SystemD files shown below:

Upgrade Nautobot Python Version in Virtual Machine

·729 words·4 mins
One observation lately is that Python is moving along quickly with new versions and new EOLs. Along with needing to make these updates, the applications that Python uses will also need to be moving along. Nautobot is my favorite, and in my opinion the best SOT platform available in the open source ecosystem today. So let’s dive into the updating of the Python version. For this post, I’ve created a new Rocky 8 Virtual Machine to be the host.

Desktop Build 2023

·840 words·4 mins
Here I’m going to dive into what I’m planning to build out for my next desktop here in 2023. Prime Day is nearly upon us, and I’m anticipating (but do not know for sure) that prices on some of the gear that I’m looking for will be available at a good price. I’m also looking to build out a bigger system in order to run some intense VMs up coming.

Nautobot: Get IP Addresses From Nautobot

·1979 words·10 mins
One of Nautobot’s primary functions is to serve as an IPAM solution. Within that realm, the application needs to provide a method to get at IP address data for a device, quickly and easily. In this post I will review three prominent methods to get an IP address from Nautobot. It will demonstrate getting the address via: Nautobot REST API curl Python Requests GoLang HTTP pynautobot Ansible Lookup Nautobot GraphQL API curl Python Requests GoLang HTTP pynautobot Ansible Lookup Each method I will demonstrate how to get the IP address for Loopback0 on the device bre01-edge-01 within the demo instance of Nautobot.

Nautobot Remote Validation

·1343 words·7 mins
In this post I’m going to dive into a bit more on the Nautobot custom validators. This is a powerful validation tool that will allow for you to write your own validation capability, including in this demonstration on how to complete a validation against a remote API endpoint. The custom validators are a part of the Nautobot App extension capability. This allows for custom code to be written to validate data upon the clean() method being called, which is used in the majority of API calls and form inputs of Nautobot.

Nautobot Secrets - Hashicorp Vault

·630 words·3 mins
With Nautobot, one of the things that came up was how to work with secrets. Nautobot itself is not the place to maintain secrets, as it is not a vault. There may be some good cryptographic libraries out to handle this, but by its nature, that is not the intent. So Nautobot has written methods to be able to retrieve secrets from proper vault sources and be able to leverage them.

Nautobot Jobs in Jobs Root

·1896 words·9 mins
Today I was working to demonstrate how to get started with Nautobot Jobs within the Jobs root of Nautobot. This is not a pattern that I develop often, as I am typically developing Jobs within a plugin as my development standard. More to come on that later. During this case, the ask was to build a Job that would connect to a network device. I had a few troubles that I didn’t want to have to work through on a call that had limited time and that was a screen share.

Nautobot IP Provisioning

·1390 words·7 mins
One of the great things about building an enterprise system, is being able to get systems to work cohesively amongst themselves to bring a complete solution. One of the workflows that is often required in a static IP address environment is the need to provide static IP addresses to hosts on a network segment. When using an IPAM (IP Address Management) solution such as Nautobot, the APIs and SDKs/modules made available for use in automation workflows is paramount to having the cohesion to make a seamless IT system.


GraphQL - Aliasing

·1045 words·5 mins
One of the features that I find myself using periodically that I think is underrated as far as using GraphQL is its ability to alias return keys in the response. This can be extremely helpful for developers writing applications, as it allows them to have the API response with the keys they are looking for. I have found this feature particularly useful when working on applications like Meraki and Nautobot together.


Nautobot Jobs - Your Custom API Endpoint

·1717 words·9 mins
One of the best features of Nautobot as a Network Automation Platform is the ability to create your own custom code. This is executed via a job. What makes Nautobot unique is its ability to integrate with a Git repository to get those jobs and code for use into Nautobot. This provides perhaps the simplest, authenticated, and logged methodology for building your own API endpoints. Nautobot supplies an API endpoint to start execution of jobs.

Nautobot Ansible Collection: Devices

·1657 words·8 mins
All of the work through the modules thus far in the series have brought us to what we all want to see. How to get or update device information inside of Nautobot. Adding of sites, device types, device roles are required to get us to this point. Now you can see how to add a device to Nautobot using the networktocode.nautobot.device module. There are many optional parameters for the module specifically.

Nautobot Ansible Collection: Device Types

·1722 words·9 mins
A device type is the next piece in the Nautobot Device onboarding requirements. The device type corresponds to the model number of the hardware (or virtual machine). This is where you are able to template out devices during their creation. So if you have a console port on a device type, that console port will be created when you create the device. However, there is NOT a relationship built between the device type and the device.

Nautobot Ansible Collection: Device Roles

·1112 words·6 mins
A device role is aptly named, the role of the device. This is likely to be something that is meaningful to your organization and could change. For example you may have the 3 tier system of Core, Distribution, and Access layer environments. These are just fine. So you would want to have the roles there to reflect this reality. You may have leaf-spine environments, there are two more roles. And in my past I have also had roles that would indicate that there are dedicated DMZ, WAN edge, Internet edge devices.

Nautobot Ansible Collection: Platforms

·1108 words·6 mins
Platforms are an optional item when adding devices into Nautobot. The platform is the OS that you are going to be using. Most often this is used to help identify which driver your automation platform is going to be using. Specifically the slug of the platform is what needs to match. So in the terms of Ansible (since we are using Ansible to populate Nautobot), you will want to set Cisco IOS devices to ios.

Nautobot Ansible Collection: Manufacturers

·870 words·5 mins
Adding your manufacturers via code is the easy way to get started with your Nautobot devices. Immediately after adding Sites, the next thing to get going when using Nautobot as your Source of Truth is to add in Manufacturers. These are just that, who makes the gear that you use. For this demonstration you will see adding just a few manufacturers. I’m not necessarily picking on any vendors and who should or shouldn’t be here.

Nautobot Ansible Collection: Site Module

·1814 words·9 mins
This post dives into the Nautobot Ansible Content Collection sites module to create/update a Site. This series for the beginning will be a clone of what I had done previously with NetBox. So some of the language will be very similar. When it comes to creating and deleting sites in Nautobot, the question of should I be using Ansible to do this? In my opinion this is a yes it should be.

Nautobot Ansible Collection: Installation

·1203 words·6 mins
This is the first post as I shift into taking a closer look at the Nautobot Ansible Collection. The collection includes many of the needed modules to effectively manage your Nautobot environment. If 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: This post is going to give information on how to install the collection as it may be applicable to every post in the series (as they get posted).