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Network management made easy with multivendor graphical VLAN management

By Chris Young, Solutions Architect, HP Networking   @netmanchris on Twitter

 

cy.jpgHere’s the scene:

 

Monday morning, 10:19 am 

 

Junior tech: "We just had the executive floor access switch go out"!

 

Intermediate tech: "Quick grab the switch from the lab! Those guys won't want to wait for the switch to arrive tomorrow on our next-business-day support contract!"

 

Junior tech installs the new switch as the senior engineer walks in the door. As the switch finishes booting, the senior network engineer says:

 

" Wait a minute. . . You did reset the VLAN database first, right?"

 

The junior tech looks at him with a blank stare and the intermediate gazes on with a look of horror as the phone starts to ring. . .

 

How many network managers have lived through this story?

 

I've had it happen to myself a couple of times in my career. A junior tech reacts quickly to a network outage and, with the best of intentions, manages to wipe out the entire VLAN database for the network. Let me tell you from experience, rebuilding the VLANs on a small-to-medium network is not fun. Let’s not even talk about a large network. 

 

On the bright side, with the widespread adoption of IP telephony, the phones probably won't work either. For those who don't know what I'm talking about, I suggest you buy one of your grizzled network folk a coffee and ask him to tell you tales of yore.

 

The HP Intelligent Management Center (IMC) has a sweet piece of functionality built into the base platform that will allow network operators to ensure this never happens again: The VLAN management module which is built into all IMC base platforms, both standard and enterprise licenses.

 

See for yourself - with HP IMC 60-day free trial

 

 

In this video, I walk you through a quick demonstration of how a network administrator can use HP IMC to deploy, verify and remove VLANs across an entire network to ensure they are exactly where they are supposed to be. 

 

Because these operations are performed on a switch-by-switch basis, when configured correctly, there's no chance a well-intentioned young network tech is going to lead you done the path to. . . well, you know the rest. This can also be done from the topology map, so you can actually see where your VLANs are. 

 

Speaking of ensuring the network is configured correctly, please join me next time for a quick discussion on the importance of configuration management.

 

It really is that easy.  If you’d like to see how HP IMC can make your life a little bit easier, feel free to click through to the 60-day free trial.

 

From the dark side,

@netmanchris


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