Where is all the Automation?

The future is APIs! SD-EVERYTHING! Automation! Orchestration! Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning! Sound familiar? It’s all part of the messaging going around in just about everything IT-related. With as much as you keep hearing about it, you might think that it’s all anyone is doing anymore.…

Automated F5 Backups with CatTools

We have some new F5 load balancers in our environment, which means I need a method of grabbing regular configuration backups. There are a number of methods out there, but I’ve opted to use SolarWind’s CatTools software since we already own it. The config I used…

Autonegotiation issues on Nexus QSFP Ports

Over the past two years we have made a ton of progress shifting datacenter infrastructure from 1G to 10G+. A majority of this has been through a vendor migration back to Cisco for switching – and specifically using the Nexus 9372 line. These boxes come with 48 ports of 1G/…

What is Risk Acceptance?

You can’t always get what you want. As an engineer though, it’s your job to determine what’s best for the company and recommend it to management. What happens if your suggestion gets turned down? Well certainly your proposal must have been mis-understood, right? Maybe…

You Should Automate Something This Year

Maybe 2018 isn’t off to quite the best start. Recent processor vulnerabilities have people scrambling to patch and update systems. Stuff like this ends up being a fairly large sink of time for any systems/network administrator. The worst part is that we have practically no control of…

L2 Basics: Spanning-Tree Protocol

Spanning-tree protocol (STP) is one of those network technologies that is easy to forget about. It exists in the background of almost every network, and for the most part it does it’s job without any issues. However, there is still a huge benefit to understanding what STP does…

An Afternoon with ARIN

I had the opportunity to attend an ARIN on the Road event last week. It was an all-day event that focused on education: who ARIN is, what they do, and some things they are working on. As a network admin I’ve had to work with ARIN a handful…

How to: Migrating to a New Synology NAS

Back in 2011 I picked up a Synology DS411 NAS, which has proved to be one of the most beneficial parts of my home lab. When I purchased it, I filled it with 4x 3TB drives for a total of 12TB of storage (~8TB usable with RAID5). I use the…