Lindsay Hill network control, visibility, management

Wipebook - A Portable Whiteboard

It is a stereotype, but engineers really do like whiteboards. Problem is, you can’t carry one around with you. Plus there’s still a few unenlightened employers who don’t provide whiteboards. Enter the Wipebook, a spiral-bound notebook made of whiteboard-like pages:

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iRules/Tcl - Watch the Comments

It’s pretty common practice to ‘comment out’ lines in scripts. The code stays in place, but doesn’t get executed. Perfect for testing, when you might need more debug output, or you want to run a slightly different set of actions. But you have to be careful when commenting out lines - it might catch you out, and the F5 iRules editor won’t save you.

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Complexity vs Security

Many of the ‘security’ measures in our networks add complexity. That may be an acceptable tradeoff, if we make a meaningful difference to security. But often it feels like we just add complexity for no real benefit.

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War Stories: Cursed VLANs

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Ops Work vs Project Work

There’s a constant tension between delivering new services, and running the existing services well. How do you figure out how to prioritise work between Operations tasks and Project work? Skewing too far either way leads to problems. Maybe the answer is in how we structure Operations tasks?

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Meeting Rules

Years ago a wise engineer gave me these rules for meetings:

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Cumulus in the Campus?

Recently I’ve been idly speculating about how campus networking could be shaken up, with different cost and management models. A few recent podcasts have inspired some thoughts on how Cumulus Networks might fit into this.

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Accurate Dependency Mapping - One Day?

Recently I’ve been thinking about Root Cause Analysis (RCA), and how it’s not perfect, but there may be hope for the future.

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Fixed-Price, or T&M?

Recently I posted about Rewarding Effort vs Results, how different contract structures can have different outcomes. This post covers Time & Materials vs Fixed-Price a little more, looking at pros & cons, and where each one is better suited.

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Andrisoft Wanguard: Cost-Effective Network Visibility

Andrisoft Wansight and Wanguard are tools for network traffic monitoring, visibility, anomaly detection and response. I’ve used them, and think that they do a good job, for a reasonable price.

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