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OBJECT-ORIENTED SERVICE DEPLOYMENT

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000245703D
Publication Date: 2016-Mar-31

Publishing Venue

The IP.com Prior Art Database

Related People

Brian Sarbin: AUTHOR

Abstract

Object-oriented service deployment provides a business-centric approach to network and service configuration. Users define objects of the same type in the network and associate services with those objects or object groups. This approach simplifies the task of managing networks because users can modify the configuration and the set of services centrally, thereby causing associated objects to update those modifications automatically.

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OBJECT-ORIENTED SERVICE DEPLOYMENT

AUTHORS:

Brian Sarbin

CISCO SYSTEMS, INC.

ABSTRACT

    Object-oriented service deployment provides a business-centric approach to network and service configuration. Users define objects of the same type in the network and associate services with those objects or object groups. This approach simplifies the task of managing networks because users can modify the configuration and the set of services centrally, thereby causing associated objects to update those modifications automatically.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION

    Service configuration is currently a bottom-up approach. Services are manually configured on a device-by-device basis, often by copy-pasting large chunks of code. This process is very error prone without automation. However, using automated or semi-automated processes, such as scripts or golden templates, fails to eliminate errors. Additionally, after a service is deployed, it can be nearly impossible to determine certain information, such as which combination of services is deployed at a given site, which user implemented certain modifications, and why a user implemented certain modifications. The only true source of documentation is the configuration file itself, which can often be difficult to understand because the configuration file may typically comprise thousands of lines of configuration code spanning multiple featues and services with interdependencies that are intrecately linked together. Due to this hidden complexity, it is considered safer to leave configuration files as-is rather than try to determine which lines of configuration are no longer needed. Also, current automation techniques typically only configure one device at a time, failing to automate the entire service delivery across multiple device types or virtual and physical environments. Further, today's tools do not provide sufficient separation between authorship and deployment of configurations. This lack of separation can become problematic during deployment. For example, less skilled or

Copyright 2016 Cisco Systems, Inc.


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knowledgeable engineers can inadvertently change or remove a critical setting, thereby putting the network into an error state.

    Object-oriented service deployment comprises three basic parts. The first part involves defining objects in the network in a way to make it easy to identify and group similar objects. In one embodiment, sites may be defined by their respective types. Sites include all of the virtual and physical networking equipment at a given location. The second part involves associating services and their service configuration with these definitions. In one embodiment, the collection of services can be associated to a site type via a template. The third part involved redefining a site from one type to another type. In an embodiment, redefining the site automatically modifies the services running at sites of the same type.

Part 1: Defining Objects

    In one embodiment, sites are def...