Agile Network Changes: No Longer a Contradiction in Terms

Steve Lamont
By Steve Lamont December 27, 2017 2 minute read
Steve Lamont is a senior marketing manager at NetBrain Technologies. He has been an in-house content editor writing about operational and information technologies for over 10 years.

Agility and network changes aren’t two terms that typically align. In order to achieve one successfully, the other needs to give. It’s a quandary for many network engineers who are under increasing pressure to achieve greater agility across the network.

As every network engineer fully understands, configuration changes represent risk – about 50% of all outages can be traced back to some change. To combat this risk and achieve the level of agility being mandated by the organization requires careful management and control. Traditional network automation solutions – network configuration and change management (NCCM) tools –  enable network operations teams to gain process and configuration agility by automating the deployment of network device configurations.

 

While NCCM tools do help reduce human error, they don’t eliminate it. All too often, network changes have unexpected consequences. Where NetBrain sets itself apart is through its Change Management module. With NetBrain, engineers can validate the effectiveness and downstream impact of a configuration changes as part of its benchmark process. By capturing a rich set of data both before and after changes are deployed, NetBrain’s comparison engine will validate that the changes were deployed as planned.

In addition, NetBrain’s Executable Runbook technology can further validate the impact of those changes to the surrounding network. NetBrain automates repeatable diagnostic activities. Leveraging these runbooks, users can define workflows to automate tasks previously carried out by an operator manually. Such automated procedures can be used for troubleshooting and compliance scenarios to minimize the scope of human error.

NetBrain’s Change Management module is an add-on capability to NetBrain’s core product, which offers several benefits associated with traditional NCCM solutions, including the ability to preset configuration templates, deploy changes in bulk with a single click, and rollback changes in the event of a failure.

NetBrain’s approach was further validated when Gartner named us a top vendor in its 2017 Network Automation Market Guide.

Change is never easy. But with the help of NetBrain’s Change Management module, engineers can ensure that configuration changes are carried out as intended. This allows them to increase network agility while protecting against unforeseen circumstances.

 

For more information about NetBrain Change Management, check out these resources: