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Course Overview

The “Open Networking in the Data Centre” class is designed as a practical hands-on introduction to the most common network protocols that are deployed in data centre environments. It consists of a series of short theory lectures and extensive hands-on exercises using Debian Linux hosts as well as the latest bare metal Edge-Core switching products running a Linux based Open Source Network OS.

The hands-on experience gained on this course will enable the student to apply the same configuration steps in any network using equipment that supports Open Source network operating systems such as Cumulus Linux and Open Network Linux as well as standard Debian based distributions including Ubuntu or Linux Mint and others.

Target Audience

Network engineers who need to familiarise themselves with the installation, management and operation of an Open Source Network OS or need to know how to configure networking on a Linux host.

Course Prerequisites

Students should have some basic experience with IPv4 and LAN switching systems.  Experience using Linux is preferable although not essential.

Course Outline

​Course Outline Part 1 - Network Configuration

In part one, the student will learn to use and administer a Linux host by installing and configuring Debian on a virtual machine. This will be installed with a bare bones installation using the NetInstall ISO, where the required open networking packages will be installed as required.

This part gives the students an understanding of how to configure networking using a standard Linux distribution, and prepares the student for the more advanced capabilities of running an open network OS on a hardware switch later in the class.

  • Module 1 – Open Networking Overview and Initial Setup
    • Open networking & Linux
    • The Linux OS & Shell
    • Users, groups & permissions
    • Package management & open source networking packages
    • Lab 1 – Initial Setup
      • Installing Debian Linux from a NetInstall CD
      • Verifying the Debian installation and enable sudoers
      • Configure the correct environment for the user account
      • Downloading and installing the Debian packages required for open networking
  • Module 2 – Host Management
    • Network interface configuration
    • Configuring management & monitoring
    • PAM and RADIUS authentication (libpam-radius-auth)
    • SNMPv3 monitoring using LibreNMS
    • Debian configuration and backups
    • Lab 2 – Host Management
      • Adding a static IP address to eth0 and a loopback management address
      • Configuring a name space VFR
      • Verifying the host status and configuration
      • Backing up configuration files
      • Configuring and verifying the PAM RADIUS client
      • Configuring and verifying syslog (rsyslog) and NTP clients
      • Setting up SNMPv3 on a Linux host and verifying using LibreNMS
  • Module 3 - Port & Link Configuration
    • Interface bonding (LAGs) & LACP
    • Discovery protocols; CDP, LLDP (lldpd)
    • Port mirroring with the Deamonlogger soft tap
    • Lab 3 – Port Configuration
      • Configure an interface bond (LAG)
      • Configure and view CDP information
      • Configure and view LLDP information
      • Configure and monitor traffic with Daemonlogger
  • Module 4 – VLANs, Bridging & Spanning Tree
    • Bridging and the MAC Table
    • Layer 2 Forwarding & VLANs
    • Configuring access and 802.1Q tagged VLANs
    • Spanning Tree (STP)
    • Lab 4 – VLAN and Spanning Tree Configuration
      • Configure a bridge with Spanning Tree
      • Configure VLAN trunked bridges with Spanning Tree
  • Module 5 - IPv4 Routing
    • Router redundancy and VRRP
    • IPv4 routing with Quagga
    • OSPF configuration using Quagga
    • Lab 5 – IP Routing and Router Redundancy
      • Configuring and testing VRRP failover
      • Configuring multi-area OSPF with route summarisation
      • Enabling and testing ECMP
Course Outline Part 1 - Network Configuration

In part two, the student will learn to use the Open Network Install Environment (ONIE) to install and manage a Network OS on a bare metal switch. Additionally the student will deploy and configure Data Centre specific open network configurations manually and automatically.

  • Module 6 – Open Network Install Environment (ONIE)
    • ONIE Overview • ONIE Detailed Boot Process
    • ONIE CLI
    • Installing Network OS via ONIE
    • ONIE BootLoader Operation & Tools
    • Lab 6 – ONIE Network OS installation & Management
      • Install NOS on a bare metal switch using ONIE
      • Upgrade NOS
      • Uninstall NOS and update ONIE
      • ONIE Tools
  • Module 7 – Multi-chassis LAG (MLAG)
    • MLAG overview
    • Configuring MLAG
    • Lab 7 – MLAG Configuration
      • Configure the LAGs to be used for the MLAG
      • Configure and monitor the MLAG Peers
      • Test and verify MLAG operation while introducing link failures
  • Module 8 – VXLAN
    • VXLAN overview & operation
    • Configuring VXLAN
    • Lab 8 – VXLAN controller-less configuration
      • Configure the VXLAN link
      • Bind the VXLAN link to a bridge
      • Configure static MAC bindings
      • Test VXLAN host connectivity
  • Module 9 – Automation & Orchestration
    • Automation and Ansible Overview
    • Ansible Modules
    • Ansible Playbook
    • Lab 8 – Zero Touch & Auto provisioning
      • Ansible Ad hoc commands
      • Ansible Network Configuration Playbook
      • Zero Touch Switch Provisioning

Course Duration

3 days

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