How do you deploy configuration changes to production network?

Administrators working on production networks often face the need to carry out changes to the configurations of switches, routers, firewalls and other devices. The change could be a trivial one to modify a minor setting or might be a major one like upgrading the firmware.

In both the scenarios, configuration changes to a device in production network requires planning, coordination, attention, diligence and visibility. In the absence of a sound change management process, a faulty or improper change could result in disruptions, network downtime, security breaches and loss of productivity.

Even when a change management process is in place, if it does not possess a proper monitoring framework or activity trails, administrators might discuss the proposed changes beforehand, but the actual change done might be different from the one originally planned. This kind of scenarios would create accountability issues, when something goes wrong. Furthermore, troubleshooting becomes cumbersome.

An easy way to tackle all these issues and deploy changes in hassle-free manner, is to automate the entire change management process. DeviceExpert, a trusted Network Configuration Management solution comes in handy to achieve this.

Using DeviceExpert, you can ensure that the proposed configuration changes are approved by designated administrators before deploying them to devices. For all configuration changes, you can have comprehensive audit trails providing information on ‘who’, ‘what’ and ‘when’ of configuration changes.

The configuration change management with DeviceExpert extends to alerting mechanism and even rollback functions. When changes are deployed on devices, you can receive email notifications, generate trouble tickets to your help desk, send SNMP traps to your network monitoring system or even rollback configurations to the previous version or to the baseline version.

If a faulty change is rolled out to the device, you can get the device up and running by deploying the previous best configuration in no time and get the device up and running again.

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About the Author: Shannon Lewis

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