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NVIDIA Air Infrastructure Simulation Platform

I recently tested the NVIDIA Air Infrastructure Simulation Platform and would like to share my first experiences with you. What is NVIDIA Air Infrastructure Simulation Platform or NVIDIA Air? In a nutshell, NVIDIA Air is a cloud-hosted, data center simulation platform. Where you can: Test and validate network configurations, features, and automation code. Build your own data center topology or choose from an impressive list of pre-built topologies. You can use Cumulus Linux or SONiC as network operating system, add Ubuntu nodes, and more. Import / Export lab topologies. Share the…

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Cisco Live 2024 Wrap-Up

Last week, I attended my 11th Cisco Live in person, in the fabulous Las Vegas. This post is my Cisco Live 2024 Wrap-up. I can already tell you that the next edition of Cisco Live US will be held June 8-12, 2025 in San Diego, California. If my company agrees to send me there, I’m already looking forward to it, because San Diego is a wonderful city. If you’d like to be notified when the registration opens, you can subscribe here: https://www.ciscolive.com/global/cisco-live-2025.html But that’s not the main purpose of this…

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Cisco Live 2024 – an Englishman in Vegas

Once again this year, Cisco Live US 2024 will take place in Las Vegas, Nevada, from June 2 to 6, 2024. I’m already registered and I’m looking forward to it! This year will be my 11th time attending Cisco’s annual conference in person, in both Europe and the United States.   Straight to the point I’ve already written a few posts in previous years about what’s interesting to see and do at Cisco Live, and whether the conference is worth attending in person (and of course, it’s worth it!). This…

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The Future of Network Engineering in the AI/ML era

It seems like yesterday when I saw my first network automation presentation at a conference. I remember it very well; it was in 2015 at the Cisco Network Innovation Summit in Prague. Mr. Tim Szigeti was presenting the first version of the Cisco APIC-EM, the future Cisco Digital Network Architecture (DNA) controller. I talked already about it in a previous article, written in 2018, about my journey toward network programmability and automation. After its presentation, and for many years afterward, the question was on everyone’s lips: Is this the end…

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Cisco Live 2023 – Is the conference worth the price?

Cisco Live US 2023

Cisco Live US 2023 will take place from June 04 to 08 in Las Vegas. I have just registered, and this will be my 10th time attending. However, the question arises: is the Cisco Live conference worth the price? Travel and Accommodation I will not consider the cost of travel and accommodation in this post. This introduces too many variables depending on where the conference is, where you are coming from, and what your preferences are for accommodations. We’re only going to talk about the cost and benefits of attending…

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Migrating Cisco FabricPath and Classic Ethernet Environments to VXLAN BGP/EVPN over a 400Gb-based Clos Topology, part 1 – the why

During the past three years, I have spent a good portion of my time testing, planning, designing, and then migrating our DC network from Cisco FabricPath and Classic Ethernet environments to VXLAN BGP/EVPN. And simultaneously, from a hierarchical classic two-tier architecture to a more modern Clos 400Gb-based topology. The migration is not yet 100% completed, but it is well underway. And I have gained significant experience on the subject, so I think it’s time to share my knowledge and experiments with our community. This is my first post on this…

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SCP not working with MacOS 13 Ventura?

You have updated your MacOS to version 13 (Ventura) and a simple SCP to a network device does not work anymore? In fact, this is normal, here is the reason and how to solve this. The symptom The SCP command that you have already done thousands of times to upload or download a file from/to a network device gives an error, for example: ~ scp nxos64-cs.10.2.4.M.bin admin@myswitch:bootflash:/// (admin@myswitch) Password: subsystem request failed on channel 0 scp: Connection closed   The reason The SCP protocol has been deprecated in OpenSSH 9.0 which…

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RobotFramework Debug Logs

This is a very short post, as a complement to my previous post about PyATS, Genie, and RobotFramework.   How to see the debug logs of RobotFramework? I’m doing a lot of testing with RobotFramework and Genie right now. And I had a little trouble getting the right level of debugging to fix my mistakes. Here is a short and efficient way to generate a log file with RobotFramework: Just add the options -L trace and –b your_debug_file.log to have everything you need. For example: robot -d ./output -L trace…

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Cisco Live 2022

Cisco Live US 2022 will be June 12-16 in Las Vegas. After two years of virtual conferences and being vaccinated three times against Covid-19, I’m more than motivated to go in person! However, for those who are still hesitating, there is also an online version, over two days, probably in a similar format to 2021. I am really looking forward to it and being able to talk and interact with my former colleagues, friends, and peers again. This is probably the best part about attending a conference in person: meeting…

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Cisco DCAUTO exam study resources

I just passed the Cisco DevNet DCAUTO (300-635) exam (Yay!). This is my 3rd Cisco exam on network automation after NPDESI in 2018 (replaced now by the DevNet program), and DevNet CORE (DEVCOR) in 2020. But this time, I documented everything I read, so I could report it here and build a Cisco DCAUTO exam study resources. By doing this, I hope to help anyone who wants to study for this certification. And, as I have already passed the DevNet CORE exam, I am now Cisco certified DevNet Professional.  …

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2021 IT Blog Awards finalist!

IT Blog Awards Finalist 2021

I have the honor of having my blog selected as a finalist in the 2021 IT Blog Awards, hosted by Cisco. It is a privilege and a great joy for me to have my blog selected for the fourth consecutive year! Congratulations also to all of the other finalists, who all produce great and valuable content! Click here to vote and choose the winner of the 2021 IT Blog Awards. If you want to vote for my blog, you can find it under: “Let’s talk about Network“, thank you in advance…

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First steps with pyATS

pyATS

Have you ever wanted to compare the operational state of a bunch of network devices between two specific times? Not only if the interfaces are up or down, but the number and status of BGP peers, the number of prefixes received, the number of entries into a MAC-address table, etc? This is something quite laborious to do with classical NMS or Do-It-Yourself scripts. And this is where pyATS can become a real asset. Here are my first steps with pyATS: Network Test & Automation Solution. What is pyATS? pyATS (pronounced…

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How to simulate a host in a real network?

How to simulate a host

Like some other posts, I didn’t think I would write this one because it seemed obvious. But, after talking to a lot of engineers and customers, I realized that not everyone knows this trick. So here it is. The question is this: how to simulate a real host in a physical network environment when you don’t have computer at your disposal? Well, let’s take an example. The environment Here is an example with a very simple VXLAN topology consisting of two spines and two leafs. I’m using Cisco Nexus switches…

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Basic Linux Networking tips and tricks part-5: tcpdump

tcpdump-logo

Here is another post of the series on basic network troubleshooting and tools under Linux. In this post, I will talk about tcpdump. Other posts of the series This post is part of a series of basic Linux Networking tips and tricks. The other posts of this series are: The ip and nmcli commands The mtr command The ss and netstat commands The curl command tcpdump Introduction I think the most essential element to debug a network problem is a packet capture tool or sniffer, and the most common one…

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25 years as a Network Engineer!

Cisco-2501

In January 1996, I entered for the first time in the configuration of a Cisco 2501 router. This was the beginning of my career as a network engineer. That was just 25 years ago! Here’s a quick look back and a few tips for junior engineers who are at the beginning of their careers.   25 years as a Network Engineer! In 25 years, I had the opportunity to change several times my working environment and specialty as a network engineer: I went from network engineer and peering-manager for regional…

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Goodbye 2020… and never come back!

As we approach the end of the year, we can finally say goodbye to 2020. Goodbye 2020… and never come back! But, it is also time to look back at 2020 and try to see what the year 2021 promises us. So, in 2020…   COVID-19! The first thing that comes to mind when we talk about this year, and I think this will be the case for a long time, is the COVID-19! Who could have foreseen at the beginning of January that the entire world would be masked…

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2020 IT Blog Awards finalist!

2020 IT Blog Awards finalist

I have the honor of having my blog selected as a finalist in the Most Educational category of the 2020 IT Blog Awards, hosted by Cisco. It is an honor and a great joy for me to be selected, for the third consecutive year, alongside other high-level bloggers who all have very deep technical knowledge! I hope you enjoy my articles as much as I enjoy writing and sharing them. I know I could write more, but I try to put quality ahead of quantity.   Please click here to vote…

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How to Overcome the Impostor Syndrome as Network Engineer

imposter-syndrome

Many network engineers, myself included, sometimes feel like they don’t belong and don’t deserve to be here. Here are a few tips to combat the impostor syndrome. Sometimes, do you feel like an impostor? This is quite common in IT: you feel like an impostor. Even when you’ve got THE dream job, or when you’ve earned this recognition, or when you’ve passed that famous certification… You can’t get rid of the feeling that it’s just smoke, that you must have fooled everyone and that at any moment you will be…

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My Cisco DevNet Core Exam Journey

Cisco DevNet Specialist

On 23 October 2020, I took and passed the Cisco Certified DevNet Professional Core exam (350-901 DEVCOR) on my first attempt. I explain here the resources I used to study and pass this exam. My background and experience Before I explain what and how I have studied, you need to understand what I already knew, what was my background and experience with some of the topics of the exam before I started to study for it. At the end of April 2018, I already passed a Cisco specialist certification on…

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OnVue – Get certified from your home

OnVue

One of the positive aspects of this difficult period, if I may say so, is the possibility of taking a Pearson Vue test online, called OnVue. Last Friday, October 23rd, I took a Cisco exam from home and I think it’s interesting to share with you the details of this experience. With OnVue – Get certified from your home! The registration for the exam The registration for the test is almost the same as for a Cisco test done in a Vue test center. Go to the website of Pearson…

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