Operating and automating computer networks can become easy once we have all information we need. Then the asset management software for networking equipment plays a critical part in any action we perform. It's the tool that should be responsible for collecting data about all network devices automatically and with precision. The hardware, software, line cards, control-plane cards or power supplies, it all should be included.
It starts with completing all hardware assets. But it shouldn't end just there! The indivisible part of any hardware is the software. We should understand what software versions of operating systems are in operation. When we understand what is actually being used, we can make sure we do not overpay for licenses we don't.
That's enough for the introduction and let's have a quick look at the parameters of the software that takes care of all that should look like.
Adequate network asset management software should be responsible for frequent and fully automated data collection and standardization. The reasons for automated data collection are many. First and the most important one is that, once we rely on manual inputs for any change, we may lose that data in the process.
Secondly, manual data input is more prone to errors. That's why we should tend to build a script or use proper asset management software to perform the task for us reliably.
The IP Fabric platform is a perfect example of the network equipment asset management software that can cover all our needs. It automatically discovers the network and provides a full device, module, software, or interface inventory. Now, let's have a quick look at an example of a network device inventory in the IP Fabric software.
Another value, that is provided immediately lies in advanced filtering and sorting options. In any inventory table, we can easily filter to modify the output. Not to mention, that any information is readable via API.
Any decision making in network operations should arise from a quality data baseline, not expectations. If we update network inventory manually, it's almost never reality and can easily lead towards wrong decision making and errors. On the other hand, when we start implementing an automated process, we are implementing faster and more accurate decision making at the same time.
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