Something that becomes increasingly more a thing of the past in networking is the use of CLI to manage devices. Moving away from CLI management has many benefits, including:
increased speed of deployment,
excluding the human 'fat finger' factor.
Now, how do you get started into this new era of device management? If you have little to no programing knowledge, the road to network device programability may look steep and bumpy. But fear not! We've got you covered. If you happen to be at CiscoLive in Berlin in February make sure to visit the DevNet Zone and attend one of the NETCONF/RESTCONF/YANG API workshops we offer!
This year, it will be an entire different approach to running the workshop: No slides, all hands on. In the true spirit of a workshop, you will be using a provided workstation with all the tools installed to allow you to interact with network devices and Python using an interactive environment called Jupyter (previously known as iPython).
You will walk through prepared content and code examples which you can modify as you like. Everyone (well, there's a 15 seat limitation) will have their own network devices and coding environment.
What's in it?
WSMA, the web services management agent, a very lightweight and simple way to start with device programability
NETCONF and YANG, the 'gold' standard of model driven device programability
RESTCONF, the new and upcoming device programability approach using REST and (predominantly) JSON
To give you a hint of what the environment looks like... here are two screen shots to give you a glimpse:
The key about those notebooks is that they are truly interactive. One can change the code, add more code to it and explore things along a guided tour.
Call to Action
So, if you are interested in starting your journey into network device programability land make sure to reserve a seat for one of the workbench sessions in the DevNet zone! You can find the registration site here.
In addition, the Cisco DevNet learning labs also have various labs which deal with network device programability. You can find the Learning Labs here. Search for NETCONF, RESTCONF or YANG.