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Fixing Multi-vendor Community Administration Complexity with OpenConfig

Because the trade strikes in direction of controller managed networks, the place the operator describes what and never handle, configuring and sustaining networks from a single vendor stays very advanced. Add in the necessity to handle gadgets from a number of distributors, and the complexity is multiplied.  But community operators sometimes have gadgets from a number of distributors and should use their fashions to configure, combine, take a look at, and handle these gadgets.

A greater approach to handle multi-vendor networks is right here: The usage of fashions from OpenConfig, which is absolutely supported in Cisco IOS XE Software program.

Why use OpenConfig?

OpenConfig is an effort by community operators in collaboration with distributors to construct open, software-defined, vendor-neutral, and model-driven ideas for community configuration and administration. OpenConfig allows the usage of:

  • Information fashions for configuration and administration utilizing Yang 1.0 which can be vendor impartial
  • Streaming telemetry for monitoring and acquiring incremental updates (SNMP is passé), which allows a Pub/Sub interface that alerts the collector of adjustments virtually as quickly as they happen on the machine

The OpenConfig members embrace massive companies and repair suppliers like Google, British Telecom, Microsoft, Fb, Comcast, Verizon, and Stage 3.

OpenConfig additionally permits distributors like Cisco so as to add their very own tweaks by way of extensions to the fashions.

Determine 1 exhibits the OpenConfig fashions, that are revealed on GitHub.

Determine 1. OpenConfig Fashions

Cisco’s Embrace of OpenConfig

Many shoppers with Massively Scalable Information Facilities (MSDCs), reminiscent of Microsoft, are very enthusiastic about OpenConfig as they run big information facilities with gadgets from a number of distributors. Varied different networking distributors reminiscent of Juniper and Arista additionally assist OpenConfig fashions.

The Cisco IOS XE structure in Determine 2 lends itself to implementation of OpenConfig fashions with little effort as a result of Cisco IOS XE already helps the OpenConfig enabler:  streaming telemetry.

Determine 2: Cisco IOS XE – Practical Structure

Cisco builders have examined and carried out many native fashions for many of the Cisco IOS XE options. Native fashions are particular to Cisco gadgets and platforms. We will implement the OpenConfig fashions so there isn’t a duplication of effort. The request for an OpenConfig information ingredient is transformed to the corresponding native information ingredient as a result of Cisco fashions are sometimes a superset of what OpenConfig provides.

The structure diagram in Determine 2 exhibits how the configuration and operational databases are widespread for native and OpenConfig fashions. We solely want a approach to translate between the native and the OpenConfig mannequin components.

Sometimes, we request a configuration or operational information components, like these listed in Determine 3, and a corresponding native information ingredient related to it. Cisco IOS XE supplies infrastructure to translate the OpenConfig information ingredient to the corresponding native information ingredient. So, the method of supporting OpenConfig fashions is usually not very arduous if the native fashions for the corresponding OpenConfig fashions exist.

Determine 3. OpenConfig and Native Interfaces

Implementing Operational Telemetry with Cisco IOS XE

Cisco IOS XE supplies two methods to implement operational telemetry, relying on whether or not the weather have efficiency implications, such because the variety of interfaces and statistics on all of the interfaces. These will be massive numbers, since Cisco helps modular switching platforms with a number of line playing cards. Cisco IOS XE supplies a approach to get the info from the database utilizing FastPath. For environments with fewer interfaces, the mapping infrastructure can be utilized to get the info from the corresponding native ingredient.

Over the previous couple of months, Cisco IOS XE builders have been actively concerned in creating the OpenConfig fashions in a number of areas on Catalyst 9000 Collection swap platforms for a buyer with a purpose to fulfill very fascinating use circumstances which contain migration from SNMP. This entailed testing with the usage of the client’s community information platform and optimizing the implementation for scale and efficiency. The implementation catered to varied telemetry sorts together with on-change and periodic notification.

We engaged the client in a co-development mannequin the place we supplied a picture with the brand new mannequin implementation and the client examined it within the community and gave us suggestions. This ensured a fast turnaround time for any points discovered on the buyer website and completion of the use circumstances with verification in an precise deployment. The event cycle was accomplished as soon as we utterly automated the testing. We used Genie for operations and telemetry and an in-house device for configuration fashions. This mannequin of improvement eradicated the necessity for custom DevTest and resulted in faster supply to the client.

We’ve got often run into points when a sure information ingredient couldn’t be supported, because of the lack of performance on the machine. We’ve got additionally encountered eventualities when the illustration of an information ingredient was inaccurate. Other than working with the client on that subject, Cisco can be elevating the issue with the OpenConfig taskforce to make adjustments to the fashions.

Cisco continues to develop extra OpenConfig fashions and also will improve the revision of the present fashions to the newer variations revealed within the upcoming releases of Cisco IOS XE. Should you’re a community operator fighting configuring and managing a multi-vendor community, wrestle no extra—OpenConfig is the best way ahead.

Don’t miss different present blogs from the Cisco IOS XE developer crew:  

Welcome to Enhanced Programmatic Administration of Enterprise Gadgets – Cisco Blogs

Speed up and Simplify – Guiding Rules within the Design of New Software program Picture Improve and Patching Options 

Cisco IOS XE – Previous, Current, and Future 

How IOS XE Builders at Cisco Work Remotely and Cohesively on a 190-million-line Code Base 

Native or Open-source Information Fashions? Use each for Software program-defined Enterprise Networks 


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