If you pick a random NetEng and ask them if they love NETCONF they would likely say “Nah”. The hate-hate love-hate kind of relationship with NETCONF mostly roots in its XML layer that one can’t swap out. But if we set the XML-related challenges aside, it will become clear that NETCONF is a very well designed management interface with lots of capabilities.

In this topic we will touch on the NETCONF’s subtree filtering capabilities.

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I bet every one of you was in a situation when you bloody needed to expose some local resource over internet. Letting a remote colleague to look at your work, delivering a demo being off-VPN, or any other reason to have your service be reachable over Internet.

And it was never easy; corporate firewalls stand on-guard ensuring you can’t be agile and productive 😉

In this post I’ll share with you how I glue ngrok and fwd tools together to make my routers management interfaces exposed over Internet in a few clicks for free.

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We can praise YANG as long as we want, but for an end user YANG is useful as the tooling around it and the applications leveraging it. Ask yourself, as a user of any kind of NETCONF/YANG application what was the last time you looked at a *.yang file content and found something that was needed to consume that application?
In a user role I personally never look at a YANG source, though, I look at the tree or HTML representation of YANG all the time; Thats is the YANG human interface for me.

And even in these human friendly formats you can’t find all the answers; for example, looking at the YANG tree, how do you get the XML data sample of a given leaf? Thats what we will discover in this post.

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Its an engineers core ability to decompose a complex task in a set of a smaller, easy to understand and perform sub-tasks. Be it a feature-rich program that is decomposed to classes, functions and APIs or a huge business operation captured in steps in a Methods Of Procedure document.

In a network automation field where the configuration protocols such as NETCONF or gRPC are emerging, it is always needed to have a quick way to validate an RPC or Notification feature before implementing this in a code or a workflow.

This blog post is about a handy tool called netconf-console which allows you to interface with your network device using NETCONF quick and easy. And, of course, I packed it in a smallish container so you can enjoy it hassle-free on every docker-enabled host.

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Author's picture

Roman Dodin

Eagerness to learn & passion to share

Network Automation @ Nokia

Netherlands