Oh…Spanning Tree

black and white cold fog forestIt’s the “S” word we don’t like to hear, and often times it has degraded networks or even took them down entirely.  (All Systems Down – an older but classic story) It’s also one of those things that nobody really likes, we even had network companies, as well as IEEE try to replace it with something else. Remember the names like TRILL, and IEEE 802.1aq (SPB) or Cisco’s FabicPath technologies? You had all of these different flavors that showed a lot progress, but they never really took off for one reason or another. The funny part is this protocol we are all trying kill off is still alive and doing well, so let’s look at spanning tree in the meantime because you will likely run into it.

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Barracuda Load Balancer- Powershell

Great_Barracuda_off_the_Netherland_AntillesWorking on my Powershell skills, I was playing around with a Barracuda Load Balancer and noticed it supported some APIs which is kind of cool. At first I was playing around with it in postman and got to login and put some servers in maintenance mode, but then thought it would be really neat if I could get this working in Powershell, that way us humans can just run a script and even thinking in the “future” maybe have some automated process (a.k.a AI) handle this for us. 😉 So in this post I’ll talk about the script I created and some of the small challenges I had with this overall it was kind of neat putting this together. Continue reading “Barracuda Load Balancer- Powershell”

Automation Dance

people enjoying the concertI keep doing the automation dance, there are a lot of different tooling products out there. I have been trying to understand a use case around using it with network automation. Recently I have been dancing around with Ansible. My personal belief is that using any type of these tools would be helpful but it can be a steep learning curve if you really don’t have any programming knowledge. This is not something that is relatively easy to use or understand, don’t expect to have a working network automated tool in production on day one. I think this is great for learning, and using this in a network sandbox. If you don’t have programming mindset it might make your job harder on day one before it gets easier, but just like learning to dance you have to learn the steps, the moves, and maintain the rhythm. So with that let’s at least figure out the starting points, and begin learning the steps of the automation dance. 😉 Continue reading “Automation Dance”

Enable a RESTful ASA API

close up photography of sleeping tabby cat Starting from ASA 9.3(2) and onward the 5500-X hardware supports a RESTful API as an additional method for configuration/monitoring ASA hardware. Infrastructure as code as they call it, not anything new but I was reading a post that wrote and as he points out there are two types of styles when we are dealing with IaC, the data model or CRUD. When reading information about the ASA RESTful API it was interesting what the ASA falls into, CRUD is the method it uses and although this method works, I have similar feeling to what Ivan posted, it wonders me if this is really a step forward into IaC. In this post we’ll go through the steps to enable it and you can be the judge, does this RESTful API help? Continue reading “Enable a RESTful ASA API”

Verifying DNS Lists – FMC

We are back with another post about Cisco’s Firepower Management Center and this time we are working with the DNS list which if you have a protect license you can have your Firepower modules or your FTD (Firepower Threat Defense) devices look at DNS requests and deny requests if they are malicious. These have to be applied on your access control policy to be able to use it and in this post we are going verify some of the domain names that are in this lists. Continue reading “Verifying DNS Lists – FMC”