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    Scheduling Live Network Collection

    This function allows the user to monitor a live IP/MPLS-enabled network by collecting a quasi real-time view on the network's router configuration including tunnel configuration information (for example, configured paths) and operational information (for example, up/down state, traffic counts). By scheduling this task, the user can have the program automatically query the routers and display quasi real-time information on network elements.

    Typically, a user will first perform an Autodiscovery task, as described in Autodiscovery. Once satisfied with the results of the autodiscovery, the user will then schedule a periodic Scheduling Live Network Collection task. This allows the user to collect network data on devices that could not be discovered via the autodiscovery. More importantly, because router configuration files are modified over time, periodic live network collection is often needed in order to synchronize the live network model with the real network.

    The Management IP configured in the router profile will be used first to connect to the device, if available. In case of connection failure, the Device IP configured in the router profile will be used instead.

    See Live Network Collection Overview for a tutorial on scheduling the live network.

    Figure 1: Scheduling Live Network Collection: Collection Window

    Scheduling Live Network Collection: Collection Window

    Table 1: Scheduling Live Network Collection: Collection Options

    Task Parameter


    Router Profiles

    This drop-down menu selects a profile that was previously created in the Router Profiles window. Once a router profile is selected, the table on the left will be populated with all routers from the profile.

    • Select which routers to include in the data collection by selecting routers from the left table and clicking the Add button to move them to the right table.
    • Alternatively, use Use Profile directly to use all of the routers in the selected router profile. This option has the advantage that it will automatically pick up updates made to the selected router profile. Selecting Use Master Profile will allow the user to choose from devices that were previously collected, using the last successful credentials.

    Data Collector Instruction - Protocol

    This indicates whether the collection will use Telnet or SSH to access the routers.

    Archive Old Data

    This allows IP/MPLSView to archive data that was collected in a previous session.

    Delete old data before collection

    This will delete the contents of /u/wandl/data/collection/.LiveNetwork/type where type is substituted by the data to be collected (for example, config, interface)

    Incremental Data Collection

    Updates the data collected on an incremental basis.

    Consolidate with existing IP/MPLSView data

    Reuses existing muxloc, nodeparam, and vpn files to construct the network files.

    VLAN Discovery

    Consolidate with previously collected data from the VLAN Discovery task

    Host Discovery

    Consolidate with previously collected data from the Host Discovery task

    Data to be Collected or Processed

    Use this to select what type of data to collect from the live network. The raw data files are saved in directory /u/wandl/data/collection/.Livenetwork. You can choose one or more of the following below:

    • Configuration–Router configuration files
    • Interface–Interface data
    • Tunnel Path–MPLS tunnel data
    • Transit Tunnel–FRR and link protection tunnel data from Juniper routers
    • MPLS Topology–MPLS traffic engineering global topology and database
    • Equipment CLI–Hardware inventory data
    • ARP–Interface MAC address data
    • Multicast Path–Multicast routing table data
    • OAM–Ethernet OAM data
    • OSPF Neighbors–OSPF neighbor data
    • Switch CLI–All neighbor data

    Alternate Login

    Click the editor button to add alternate login information to attempt if the login/password in the router profile fails.

    Table 2: Scheduling Live Network Collection Parameters

    Data Collector Parameter


    No. of retries

    The number of times that a collector should attempt to collect data from a router before “giving up”.

    No. of processes

    The number of processes (similar to threads) that are launched to collect the data.

    Time Out (seconds)

    The number of seconds the collector should wait on a router before “giving up” on this try and either retry (depending on the No. of retries), or proceed to collecting the next router.

    Turn on trace

    Collection errors are logged in /u/wandl/log/wtalklog.log if the “Turn on Trace” option is selected.

    Once router configuration files are retrieved, they will be parsed into IP/MPLSView format files and the network topology will be constructed. During this process, any options specified in the Conversion Options tab (shown below) will be taken into account. Many of these options are the same ones found in the Configuration Import Wizard, described in the Router Feature Guide for NPAT and IP/MPLSView.

    Figure 2: Scheduling Live Network Collection: Conversion Window Options

    Scheduling Live Network Collection: Conversion Window

    Table 3: Scheduling Live Network Collection: Conversion Options

    Task Parameter


    Reconcile Network Files

    Each time this task is run, all live network files will normally be overwritten. There are two possible exceptions: the Graph Coordinates file and the Group file. This option allows the user to specify an existing graph coordinates file and / or a group file. When the task automatically creates the network files, it will use existing information from the graph coordinates and group files specified here to create a new graph coordinates and group file. This allows the user preserve graph coordinates and group definitions across multiple task iterations.

    Use STM instead of OC for trunk type

    Trunk types in the generated IP/MPLSView bblink file will be given STM prefixes rather than OC prefixes.

    TSolve Bandwidth

    This option will create a link, if it does not already exist, on the network topology between an interface and a dummy node (AS1000xxx) if the value of the interface utilization is greater than the TSolve Bandwidth threshold value. Use the input field to specify the bandwidth threshold value and include the bandwidth unit of measure. The required setting is to have both config and interface options selected in the collection options tab.

    Ignore VPN statements

    When selected, VPN statements will be ignored and will not be imported.

    Omit links between PE and CE

    When selected, the program will omit links between Provider Edge (PE) routers and Customer Edge (CE) routers.

    Correlate VPN via VRF names

    This option will match Virtual Private Networks (VPNs) by looking up the VPN Routing and Forwarding Instance (VRF) names instead of matching import/export route targets.

    PE-CE Connection File

    This file can be used to specify PE and CE connectivity, and is only necessary for networks that re-use private ip addresses for their VRF interfaces. For such networks, this file is needed in order to stitch up the PE-CE links correctly. File format and example input:

    #PE PE-interface PE-intf-address vrf CE CE-intf-address PE1 so-0/0/1.121 aaa-251001 CE100

    Ignore AS Node and Links

    Selecting this option will ignore AS nodes and AS links during the data extraction.

    AS Name File

    When Include BGP is selected, the user can specify a different Autonomous System (AS) name file, ASNameFile, mapping an AS name (rather than just a number) to the name of the AS nodes for display on the topology map. If left unspecified, a default file located at /u/wandl/db/misc/ASNames is used. Note however that this file may not be entirely up to date.

    Stitch by OSPF Neighbor

    The OSPF neighbor information can be used to stitch interfaces together to create the appropriate links for the topology. Browse for the directory containing ospf neighbor output (For Cisco, this is the output of the commands “terminal length 0” and “show ip ospf neighbor”). This information must be collected in advance through the User CLI Collection task.

    Allow multiple-area topologies

    This option is useful if you have multiple OSPF areas. If this option is checked, users can import more than one MPLS TE topology file to cover all the areas in the network. These files should be placed in the same directory as the configuration files.

    Allow duplicate address links

    This option will print those links that have duplicated IP addresses in other links. By default, these links are commented out.

    Stitch by secondary subnet

    For ethernets which have secondary addresses, if their primary addresses do not match any subnet, the program will try to match their secondary addresses.

    Disable media type checking

    This option will match nodes that have different media types but are within the same subnet.

    Extract NetFlow sample rate

    This option will read in the user-specified NetFlow sample rate.

    Extended Integrity Check

    This option will perform a set of extended integrity checks.

    Create dummy nodes for unrecognized files

    This option should be checked in case you wish to include hosts other than routers (for example, PC’s) in the network model, and have specified those hosts in the “Routers to be collected” list from the “Collection Options” tab.

    Don’t ignore management interfaces

    Normally the network will not be stitched based on the management interfaces, such as fxp0 for Juniper routers. In special situations, however, these may be used to form links between devices, in which case you do not want to ignore them. In that case, check this option.

    Only list policies on link

    Only the CoS policies on links in the network will be processed and saved to the policymap file. This option can be used to speed up performance by reducing the number of policies to only the ones that are relevant to routing/dimensioning.

    Don’t create nodes from existing muxloc

    This option can be used to remove previously collected devices found in the /u/wandl/data/.network/muxloc.x file which are no longer found

    Allow logical nodes without interface

    If this option is selected, logical nodes without any interfaces configured will be parsed and displayed as an isolated node. By default, this option is not selected, and logical nodes lacking interfaces will not be displayed.

    Use IPv6 addresses to stitching links

    If this option is selected IPv6 addresses will be used to stich links.

    Mark operational down links as deleted

    If this option is selected, links that are operationally down will be marked as deleted in the bblink file.

    Delete existing data with duplicated hostname

    If this option is selected, and a config file is collected for the same hostname twice, one of the config files will be deleted.

    Ignore VRF when stitching links

    The data extraction program uses various rules to stitch links, some of which are intelligent guesses based on BGP/VPNv4 information. If this option is selected, those VRF-related rules will be ignored, and links will not be stitched based on VRF information.

    Remove JUNOS RE extension in hostname

    For JUNOS dual routing engine support, by default the RE extension in the router name is removed for the Node ID and Node Name, but not the hostname. To also remove it from the hostname, select this option.

    Use shutdown interfaces/tunnel for links

    If this option is selected, then shutdown links will be used for stitching up the backbone links. By default, these links are not used for link stitch-up.

    Ignore private IP addresses

    This option instructs the program to ignore all IP address specified here by the user when collecting live network data. The user can specify more than one IP address. Make sure to check the Ignore private IP addresses checkbox, otherwise the private IP addresses specified will have no effect on the task.



    During the collection task, the task status has an error message “Failed to convert <non-Unicode character> to UTF-8.” The non-Unicode character is the character encoding specified in the installation configuration.


    • The non-Unicode character selected at installation is incorrect or the default character ASCII is used, which does not match the router’s encoding type.
    • The non-Unicode character selected at installation is correct and matches the router’s encoding type but the router configuration file has a corrupt statement line.

    Corrective Action 1:

    The fix is to go /u/wandl/bin and edit the file Search for the MPLS_ENCODING keyword and set it equal to the proper encoding type. To check the encoding type used by the routers, go to directory /u/wandl/data/collection/.LiveNetwork/config/tmp++ and use the auto_ef -l 3 * command to output the encoding type for every config file. If more than one encoding type is used, select the most frequent type and the remaining encoding types will be skipped. Then re-run Schedule Live Network Collection to verify the collection task is working.

    Corrective Action 2:

    The fix is to review the router’s configuration file to identify the statement line that has the corrupt encoding type. Then the corrupted statement line should be removed and re-entered on the router to correct the encoding type. To find the corrupt statement line, go to directory /u/wandl/data/collection/.LiveNetwork/config/tmp++ and use the auto_ef -l 3 <filename.cfg> command to output the encoding type of the corrupt config file. Then use the iconv -f <auto_ef_result> -t UTF8 <filename.cfg>command to convert the configuration file. The conversion will display only the successful conversion lines and stop immediately when it firsts encounters the line that does not match the encoding type specified by <auto_ef_result>. The next line after the displayed result is the corrupt statement that needs to be corrected on the router. After correcting the router config, re-run Schedule Live Network Collection to verify the collection task is working. If the error message appears again, then more than one statement line in the configuration is corrupt. Repeat this corrective action to identify the next corrupt statement line until the entire router configuration is clean.

    Modified: 2016-11-08