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[ih] inter-network communication history

Yeah, I wouldn't be surprised.? That's essentially what we did as a
network operator in the 1990s when we couldn't find any tools.?? We
didn't try to make it into a product, but we did just give it to some of
our customers to play with.? It was literally a few person-days of work.

There seem to have been lots of documents and protocols created though
in the Internet community relating to management.?? Did the people
creating all that code any tools and evaluate them in a live network to
prove the concepts??? Perhaps they did but the resultant tools are
captive in proprietary jails??

In the annals of Internet History, did Jon Postel's mantra of "Rough
Consensus and Running Code" fade away over time??? That's another
Internet History Timeline that would be interesting -- how did the
process and mechanisms of technology development change over 50 years.?
I wonder if The Internet has become OSIfied over the years, now
producing documents more than code.

BTW, if there's any Internet hacker entrepreneurs lurking, who have
experienced pain in operating their network, you might take a look at
that database approach to build something useful as a network management
tool.?? If I were to do a DIY tool again today, I'd use some kind of
front-end like Ruby-on-Rails, attached to some database like MySQL or
MariaDB, and grabbing data from whatever is available, e.g., via SNMP,
using some Python to interact with the stuff out on the net.? Node-Red
might also be a useful component.? All are free so there's no need for
much if any VC funding.? But I pick those pieces just because I've
played with them so they're familiar.


On 11/8/19 5:33 PM, Brian E Carpenter wrote:
>> I couldn't find any such tools in ~1991 other than the ones that had
>> been around since the early 80s.   Still can't in ~2020.
> The answer to that mystery is, I believe, that this stuff is aimed at large operatorss willing to buy expensive proprietary tools or write their own tools.
> https://www.cisco.com/c/en/us/support/docs/storage-networking/management/200933-YANG-NETCONF-Configuration-Validation.html
> https://www.tail-f.com/wordpress/wp-content/uploads/2013/03/Tail-f_NCS_NEP_Overview_Brochure.pdf
> A lot of the independent network management tools that you can buy don't seem have got past SNMP though, from a quick Google trawl. But from the number of operators involved in defining YANG modules, I'm guessing that they have toolsets up and running (replacing PERL scripts driving proprietary CLIs).
> Regards
>    Brian
> On 09-Nov-19 12:53, Jack Haverty via Internet-history wrote:
>> On 11/8/19 2:23 PM, Vint Cerf via Internet-history wrote:
>>> see RFC 1109
>>> v
>> Thanks for the pointer.? I now remember encountering RFC1109 (published
>> 1989) back in the early 90s when I was looking for tools to manage our
>> intranet.? There's a key sentence in 1109:
>> "It was generally agreed that the actual network management tools
>> available to operators, rather than the specifics of the protocols
>> supporting the tools, would be the determining factor in the
>> effectiveness of any Internet network management system."
>> I couldn't find any such tools in ~1991 other than the ones that had
>> been around since the early 80s.?? Still can't in ~2020.?? Lots of
>> documents and protocols though.
>> I've explored a bit into the NETCONF/(P)YANG pointers but haven't
>> encountered anything that even seems related to Network Management, or
>> any sign of tools/code.? The material at "readthedocs" tells me that
>> NETCONF has clients and servers, but casts no light on what those
>> servers actually do.? That netconf documentation is somewhat circular:
>> "This package supports creating both netconf clients and servers.
>> Additionally a CLI netconf utility is included. Additionally netconf
>> uses _sshutil and thus supports your SSH agent and SSH config when using
>> the client as well as socket caching for optimal performance."
>> OOOKKKKAAAYYY...the netconf package creates netconfs, but what does a
>> netconf do??? I gather that maybe it carries YANGs?
>> Somehow I'm increasingly skeptical that, even if I find some modern
>> tools, there's not a high probability that the devices I have scattered
>> now around my LAN will play their game.? Back to PING and TCPDUMP et
>> al.?? I wonder if my devices respond to SNMP.? I'm sure I have a
>> database lying around here somewhere, and could probably refresh my
>> memory of shell scripts.
>> RFC1109 also identified a key missing piece:
>> "It was acknowledged that the present service interfaces of both SNMP
>> and CMIS have limitations (e.g., neither has any sense of time other
>> than "now"; this makes it impossible to express queries for historical
>> information, or to issue command requests of the form: Do X at device Y,
>> beginning in 30 minutes)"
>> Well, at a database company, "impossible to express queries" is a
>> challenge.? When we cobbled together our adhoc management system, it
>> turned out that databases are really good at handling time and queries
>> for historical information, for performing actions on schedules or
>> demand (see TRIGGER in database lingo, or for simple stuff just use
>> cron) and for collecting and distributing data as needed.? Melding SNMP
>> and a database with a little Shell-script and SQL glue was pretty
>> straightforward and turned out to be very useful for managing the
>> intranet.??
>> We even mused about scattering databases around the net to limit traffic
>> loads by collecting high-volume SNMP data locally, and all of that
>> scattered data would be automatically aggregated using standard
>> distributed database techniques.? It worked for industries managing
>> sales, inventory, shipments, orders, etc., so it would work for network
>> data.?? I'm not sure if we ever did that though.? What we did in a few
>> days was enough to put out the fires.
>> Those observations in 1109 were very wise and accurate.? What happened
>> in the thirty years since...?? A timeline/history of Network Management
>> in the Internet might be fascinating - Tools, not meetings, protocols
>> and documents.
>> I think somebody hit my hot button... I'll stop typing.....
>> /Jack
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