Itential Use Cases
Automated management of network devices, policies, services, maintenance and more.
Automated management of network devices, policies, services, maintenance and more.
Itential can be used to automate any network engineering or operations procedure, ending the need for manual changes and accelerating your journey toward an automated future.
Check out some of the most common use cases that our customers are automating or schedule a live demo and see how Itential can automate your network today.
Management of devices is one of the most frequent challenges our customer’s face. Once a device is on the network, Itential can push standard configurations as well as perform compliance verification and reconciliation when necessary. All operational processes around device management activities can be designed within Itential’s Network Intelligent Workflow solution.
Common customer scenarios within Device Management are:
Refers to networking and data center device configurations changing over time, typically away from the organizational standards. This can lead to a large variety of problems including security, availability, compliance, and performance issues.
Itential provides a solution that enables our customers to define their own config standards in an easy to maintain manner and perform reconciliation on the devices within the network. This capability can be combined with our Network Intelligent Workflow to enable mass rollout of configuration changes as well as automating the task of remediation.
Zero-Touch Branch Turn-Up
Shortening the time to perform device migration while limiting both the effort to accomplish the swap and the downtime of the branch are key performance indicators.
Itential’s solution provides the capabilities to not only automate the task of turning up and configuring the replacement device but can perform validations both before and after the activity to ensure the network is ready for the change and left in a known state at the conclusion of the swap. This type of capability becomes critical when deploying large numbers of devices.
For many of our enterprise customers, deploying new devices into their data centers and core network is a time-consuming chore. Not only are they required to perform initial, role, and final configurations on the new network device, but regulations and internal standards may require significant investment in security scanning and verification testing.
Itential’s solution provides the capability to automate both the device’s Day 0 and 1 configuration but also the necessary testing and verification. Using Itential’s low code environment, this automation can also be built to enable end-user interaction when necessary to review and approve results, either directly through Itential’s user interface or via ITSM solutions such as Service Now or Remedy.
Mass Configuration Change
A very common task for our customers is rolling out configuration changes en masse. Sometimes it is as simple as updating the SNMP Community String, others the NTP Server list. The critical piece is rolling the change out to thousands of devices.
Itential’s automation solution streamlines this challenge by providing both the ability to easily deploy configuration changes to devices without having to write code, and the means of deploying the change rapidly in a controlled fashion.
Most people who manage networks understand that deploying a change into the network that gives applications access to the resources they require is only a small portion of the process. Coordinating resources within management solutions, keeping change management and ITSM solutions up to date, and negotiating the handoffs between various organizations all require time and effort by the teams responsible for maintaining the networks. Regardless of whether the services are traditional MEF connectivity such as ELAN and ETREE, Direct Internet Access, power meter configuration, or zero ratings, Itential can automate the operational processes around the deployment of services into the network including managing the coordination with support systems.
End-to-End Customer Provisioning / Service Order Management
Deploying services such as Dedicated Internet Access (DIA), or Layer 2 or 3 virtual private networks (L2/L3 VPN) requires interaction across multiple teams and a variety of support and resource management systems such as IP Address Management solutions and Inventory Management systems.
Itential’s automation solution can automate the deployment of these customer services as well as the interactions with the support systems to dramatically reduce both the level of effort and the time required to deploy, update, and remove services.
Service Migration (wireline, wireless, data center, etc.)
As new hardware is brought online to replace End of Life (EOL) equipment, one of the challenges organizations face is migrating services from the old device to the new in a reliable and organized fashion. Itential’s automation solution can be leveraged to perform the migrations in an automated fashion while reducing the time required by as much as 85%.
Common migration scenarios are L2VPN and L3VPN service migration, APN migrations, CLOS, and CMTS node splits.
Management of network policies can produce complex challenges for enterprises and service providers. Whether it is updating access control lists (ACLs) to counter new threats to the network, or reallocating VIP resources across the network, the Itential automation platform enables the deployment of the policies across an organizations infrastructure.
The management of Access Control Lists (ACLs) consists of providing a mechanism by which these complex constructs can be created, updated, and deployed in an organized fashion.
Organizations with multiple Firewall vendors often have challenges managing change across their firewalls. Firewalls tend to not only have different approaches to security policies but often unique element management systems (EMS) that require the same change to be configured multiple times.
Load Balancer Automation
Load balancer management delivers many of the same challenges as other policy solutions – creating and maintaining configurations, add/remove in conjunction with your IP Address Management systems and migrating the policies between network element regardless of device vendor.
As networks become more complex, the activities necessary to maintain and grow them become exponentially more difficult and time-consuming. Scripts can ease the burden but become unmanageable as processes become more complex and are difficult to maintain. Much of the time, the network change isn’t the time-consuming part, but the preparation for the change and the verification that the network is in a known state afterward.
Physical & Virtual Device Upgrades
Deploying new software versions or patches can be time-consuming at best, and revenue impacting at worst. This problem is not solved with the transition into NFV as those devices have defined lifespans and present their own challenges. For some of our customers, their inability to rapidly roll out software patches has even been revenue impacting.
Itential’s automation solution provides a low code environment which can be used to full automate software upgrade processes based on how each customer chooses to operate their networks. These upgrades can be deployed in serial, parallel or both across hundreds or thousands of devices at a time.
General Maintenance Activities
Whether it is activating ports within a data center to support a new application or configuring the network around a new SD-WAN deployment, Operations and IT teams within enterprises and services providers find their teams executing repetitive tasks hundreds or thousands of times per month.
These activities are prime candidates for maintenance automation through Itential’s automation solution, where the script for executing the task can be replaced with a Network Intelligent Workflow that can oftentimes completely remove human efforts. Examples of tasks that have been automated using Itential’s solution include port turn-ups, node splits, SD-WAN activations, and Virtual Route Reflector deployment and reconfiguration.
Automated Network Operations
Quite often, the heavy lifting associated with a maintenance activity is less about the change itself and more about the effort to prepare for and validate afterward the state of the network. This could be running a variety of command line interface (CLI) commands on devices to validate the availability of resources, device connectivity, or coordinating with Service Assurance platforms to ensure no new events or outages after a change has been made.
Itential’s automation solution can dramatically reduce the time required to execute these types of tasks as well as remove the human error that so often accompanies them. Furthermore, the automation can be configured with predefined rollback scenarios to speed network recovery should it be necessary.
Schedule a demo to see how Itential can automate every aspect of your network changes.