Monthly Archives: July 2016

Episode 9 – Testlab Environments

We returned to record our ninth episode on Sunday July 24, 2016.

Interesting News and Events

Cisco Live US LasVegas

The CCIE Routing And Switching Written Exam Needs To Be Fixed by Tom Hollingsworth
Fixing The CCIE Written – A Follow Up by Tom Hollingsworth

Roundtable Discussion – Testlab

Why should we test something before we deploy it in the live production environment?

The difference between what is in the datasheet and the real world deployment.

Feature Testing / Configuration Testing

  • Is it working in general?
  • Comparison between different features / functions that provide the same service e.g.
  • Routing protocols OSPF, ISIS, BGP, EIGRP
  • Is it working with the new software
  • Is it stable
  • Failover tests /convergence times
  • Interoperability Tests
  • different features
  • vendors
  • device types like e.g. Firewall, Router, Server

Virtual Solutions

  • GNS3
  • Cisco VIRL
  • Juniper vSRX
  • A10 vThunder
  • Citrix vNetscaler
  • Cumulus VX

Performance Testing

  • Never trust the datasheets
  • Packet genrators:
    • iPerf / jperf
    • Spierent
    • IXIA Chariot

Monitor your testlab

  • Perfsonar
  • Check_MK
  • Netflow / Flow exporter

What tools are you using?

Jason Edelmann Networktocode On Demand Network Labs

Cisco Nexus, Cisco IOS, Cisco IOS-XR, Arista, OpenDaylight, Citrix VPX, Cumulus, Juniper vMX, Juniper vSRX

PacketLife.Net Community Lab by Jeremy Stretch. Jeremy closed the lab a few years back but it was a great resource for those that didn’t have access to the gear to test their metal and skills.

If you have any questions, thoughts, or feedback please leave a comment below.


Episode 8 – Network Troubleshooting

We returned to record our eighth episode on Sunday July 3, 2016. Happy 4th of July America!

Interesting News and Events

Copa America – Chile defeats Argentina in penalty shots (I honestly felt bad for Lionel Messi)

Roundtable Discussion – Network Troubleshooting

  1. Understanding the problem.
    1. Is the problem impacting all users/systems or just a small subset?
    2. What this ever worked? Whatever is broken has worked in the past?
    3. Any scheduled changes that might be somehow involved in the problem?
  2. Identifying the individual components involved.
    1. Is the problem impacting all devices, mobiles, laptops, desktops?
    2. Is the problem impacting only specific applications or systems?
    3. What network components are involved? Firewall, load balancer, switch, router?
  3. Capturing/replicating the problem
    1. Is this problem easily replicated by yourself or someone else?
  4. Work the problem to resolution
    1. Be careful not to make the problem worse by jumping to conclusions.
  5. Document the fix and learn
    1. You’ve solved your first problem, make sure you document it in case you ever run into the same problem again, this way you’ll know what to-do and how to quickly fix it.
    2. If the problem is repeating and systemic then work to determine how to resolve the issue permanently. You may need to involve the hardware manufacturers to validate if you have a software bug.

Stelios Antoniou from PluralSight wrote an article back in 2009 titled, Cisco Network Troubleshooting for Beginners. It’s still a great resource for those trying to understand how to use the different tools available while troubleshooting.

What tools are you using?

I wrote about Ditto back in 2014 in an article titled, Windows Clipboard Manager – Ditto. I’m still a big fan of Ditto and I’m still using it today on all my Windows 10 systems. This clipboard manager saves me a lot of time as I cut and paste between applications. It’s also allowed me to go back and verify that what I actually cut-n-pasted was correct since it has a lengthy buffer and saves that buffer between reboots. You can even search the clipboard history. I’ve setup a few custom shortcuts that allows me to cut and paste multiple items at the same time.

Thanks to Damian from @PacketBrigade for giving us some feedback the last episode’s audio. While networking, firewalls and load balancers are second hand to Dominik and myself we’re both learning how to podcast and produce good content.

If you have any questions, thoughts, or feedback please leave a comment below.