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Getting Started with Junos Space Network Director

 

This section describes a series of steps that you must perform after installing Network Director to manage and troubleshoot your network.

Building Your Network

The first step after you install and log in to Network Director is to build your network. Even with large networks, Network Director has made this step relatively easy and straightforward. The steps that you need to perform depend on whether your network contains legacy devices, or new devices, or a combination of both.

You add legacy devices, which already have some configurations, to Network Director by using a process called device discovery. Once such a device is successfully discovered, Network Director reads the device configurations and replicates these configurations in the form of profiles in Network Director. You can use device discovery to add Juniper Networks switches and Wireless LAN Controllers (WLCs) to Network Director. For more information on device discovery, see Discovering Devices in a Physical Network and Understanding the Device Discovery Process.

With new devices or devices that are set to factory-default configuration, you can use the zero touch provisioning (ZTP) feature to provision the device. ZTP enables you to auto-discover, auto-upgrade, and load the requisite default configuration on Juniper Networks switches in your network automatically—without manual intervention. When you physically connect a switch that has the factory-default configuration to a network and boot the switch, the switch attempts to upgrade Junos OS automatically and autoinstall a configuration file from the network. For more information, see Configuring and Monitoring Zero Touch Provisioning.

Creating Profiles in Network Director

Profiles in Network Director are a group of feature-specific configurations that you can assign to devices. For example, you can create a CoS profile that combines all the supported class-of-service configurations for a particular device can family, and assign it to a port on a device.

  • You can create a new profile for an interface or device by defining the custom configuration. You can use the Tasks pane in Build mode to manually create profiles. For more details, see .

  • Network Director automatically creates profiles based on the configuration information read by the brownfield process. This is applicable when a device with supported configuration is discovered in Network Director. For more information, see Brownfield Deployment in Network Director.

  • Network Director automatically creates profiles when a supported configuration of a device that is already discovered and managed by Network Director is modified outside Network Director (also known as out-of-band configuration changes). For more information, see Understanding Resynchronization of Device Configuration.

Following are some advantages of using profiles:

  • Bulk provisioning—You can combine a group of configurations as a profile and apply it to one or more ports or devices in one go, thereby saving a lot of time and effort. Profiles ensure that the configurations are error-free as most configuration value ranges are set in the profile workflow. Network Director prompts the user if there are any errors. You must fix the errors before you can create a profile.

  • Editing—For profiles that are already deployed on devices, if you want to make changes to the configuration values, you can modify the configuration values in the profile and redeploy the profile. Network Director updates the new configuration value on each device where the profile is deployed.

  • Cloning—If you already have a set of profiles defined for your network and want to apply a different configuration for a set of devices or ports in your network, you use the clone feature. The clone feature enables you to make a copy of any profile and make the necessary modifications. You can then apply these to devices and ports that require the different set of configuration.

For more information on profiles, see Understanding Network Configuration Profiles.

Managing Software Images using Network Director

As a Network Administrator, you can store different versions of Junos OS software images in the Network Director image repository. You can then deploy these images on one or more managed devices manually or have the system deploy the images by using zero touch provisioning (ZTP).

For more information on managing and deploying software images, see Managing Software Images and Deploying Software Images.

Configuring Approval Modes for Device Configurations

When you make configuration changes in Build mode, the changes are not deployed to devices automatically. You must manually deploy the changes to devices in Deploy mode. When you deploy configuration changes to a device, all pending configuration changes for that device are deployed. You can deploy the device configurations in the following two ways:

  • Auto Approval—In this mode, the device configuration changes are approved automatically by the system and do not require explicit (manual) approval by a configuration approver before they can be deployed. This is the default approval mode.

  • Manual Approval—In this mode, the device configuration changes must be explicitly approved by a configuration approver before the changes can be deployed to the device. An operator performs device configurations and creates a change request for that configuration and submits it for approval to one or more approvers. The approvers are notified by e-mail whenever a change request is created. If a configuration or a change to it is approved by an approver, then the operator is able to deploy it. If a configuration is rejected, the operator must make the necessary changes, resubmit the change request, and procure an approval before the configuration can be deployed.

Note

For manual approval, the Network Director - Configuration Approver role is available in Junos Space, which is specific to Network Director. A user with this role reviews device configurations and proposed changes to device configurations and can either approve or reject them.

For more information about deploying configuration to devices, see Deploying Configuration to Devices.

Resynchronizing Device Configuration

A network managed by Network Director has three repositories of information about the configuration of a network device—the configuration stored on the device itself, the device configuration record maintained by Junos Space, and the Build mode configuration maintained by Network Director.

When the configuration contained in all three repositories match, the device configuration state is shown as In Sync in Network Director. When the repositories do not match, the configuration state is shown as Out of Sync. A common cause for this state is out-of-band configuration changes—that is, configuration changes made to a device outside of Network Director.

When a device state is Out of Sync, you cannot deploy configuration changes on the device in Deploy mode. Use the Resynchronize Device Configuration task to resynchronize the three configuration repositories and change the device configuration state back to In Sync.

For more information about device resynchronization, see Understanding Resynchronization of Device Configuration.

Creating the Baseline Configuration

You can create a baseline of configuration and the Junos OS version of the devices on the Network Director server. By creating a baseline configuration file for a device you define a reference point to save the device configuration and its Junos OS version to a particular known state and later restore the configuration to that known state.

For more information about device resynchronization, see Creating and Managing Baseline of Device Configuration Files.

Monitoring Your Network

Network Director provides the visibility into your network status and performance by using the Monitor Mode.

Network Director monitors the devices it manages and maintains the information it collects from the devices in a database. You can view this data as easy-to-understand graphs and tables—known as monitoring widgets—to quickly visualize the state of your network, spot trends developing over time, and view important details.

For more information about the monitor mode, see Understanding Monitor Mode in Network Director.

You can also use the Dashboard widgets to monitor your network performance. For more information about the Dashboard widgets, see Understanding the Dashboard.

Setting up Network Traffic Analysis and Analyzing the Traffic

The Network Traffic Analysis feature of Network Director monitors high-speed switched or routed networks. Once enabled, Network Director randomly samples network packets and sends the samples to a data learning engine (DLE) for analysis. Network traffic analysis uses packet-based sampling. Network Director samples one packet out of a specified number of packets from an interface enabled for network traffic analysis and sends the packet to the DLE. DLE uses this sampling information to create a picture of the network traffic, which includes the applications that contribute to the traffic, traffic statistics, and the top applications. You can enable network traffic analysis on all devices, except the wireless devices, that are managed by Network Director.

For more information about installing and configuring DLE, see Installing and Configuring Data Learning Engine for Network Director.

Managing Network Faults and Notifications

In Fault mode, Network Director informs you of unexpected, significant events happening in your network. Examples of such events include link up or link down, power supply failure, client authentication failure, detection of an unauthorized access point, and so on.

Network Director receives information about events from its managed devices in the form of SNMP notifications. A single event can often generate multiple SNMP notifications. To simplify management of events, Network Director correlates these notifications, creating high-level alarms of different severity levels for the events. For example, a power supply failure might generate a number of notifications. Network Director correlates these notifications and raises a single power supply failure alarm for the device. Network Director also automatically clears an alarm if it receives notification from the device that the error condition has been resolved.

To tailor Network Director fault management to your organization’s requirements, you can enable or disable the receipt of specific alarms and change the default severity level of alarms.

For more information about the fault mode in Network Director, see Understanding Fault Mode in Network Director.

Generating Network Reports

Use the Report mode in Network Director to create standardized reports from the monitoring and fault data collected by Network Director. An essential part of the network management life cycle, reporting provides administrators and management insight into the network for maintenance, troubleshooting, trend and capacity analysis, and provides records that can be archived for compliance requirements.

Network Director provides reports in PDF and HTML formats that use graphs and tables to clearly convey data. Reports are also available in CSV format for importing into spreadsheets.

For more information about managing reports in Network Director, see Managing Reports in Network Director.