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Configuration backup and restore

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What’s your plan if you lose the configuration to one of your switches or routers? During an outage, no one ever wants to be in the position of trying to figure out, from memory, how the network was configured.

Backups are lifesavers. If something goes wrong, whether from a hardware failure or someone deploying a bad config, you can roll back to the last known working config.

Do you know which devices are backing up successfully and which ones aren’t? See How do I see all configuration backups? to learn more.

If you want, you can filter the configurations list to show only certain configurations. For more information on filtering, see How to filter data in Auvik.

Automatic backups

Auvik’s configuration backup and restore feature automatically backs up all the configurations of your network elements so you never need to remember to do it. The system polls continuously for config changes. When a change is detected, Auvik makes a new backup on the time interval you’ve specified backups should be completed. The default backup time is 60 minutes following a detected change.

If you don’t want Auvik to back up configurations, change the time interval for backups to 0 days. The no-backup setting will apply globally to all devices; it can’t be changed for a specific device.

If your client networks have network elements that use FTP for backups (SonicWALL, for example), a shared collector won’t allow backups. We’re working to change this. But in the meantime, we recommend a dedicated collector, rather than a shared collector, for any networks with devices that use FTP for backup.

Keyboard actions

Whether you’re reviewing the list of backups for a device or comparing configurations, there are a few keyboard actions that allow you to perform quick tasks. For each one, you must click on the config being displayed.

Select All allows you to select all content in the configuration and paste it into a text file.

  • For Windows desktops/servers: CTRL+A
  • For Mac OS: COMMAND+A

Find allows you to search for a specific word in the configuration.

  • For Windows desktops/servers: CTRL+F
  • For Mac OS: COMMAND+F

Find next allows you to search for the detail that’s been selected, after the current location.

  • For Windows desktops/servers: CTRL+G
  • For Mac OS: COMMAND+G

Find previous allows you to search for the detail that’s been selected, before the current location.

  • For Windows desktops/servers: CTRL+SHIFT+G
  • For Mac OS: COMMAND+SHIFT+G

Line number allows you to jump to a specific line number in the configuration.

  • For Windows desktops/servers: CTRL+L
  • For Mac OS: COMMAND+L

When prompted, enter a line number and click OK. If you enter a line number greater than the size of the file, you’ll be taken to the bottom of the config.

How to compare configurations

What’s the difference between two backups? Auvik helps you compare configurations and highlights the diffs.

  1. From a network element (such as a switch), hover over the Documentation button and click Configurations from the entity navigation.
  2. Click an historical configuration you want to compare with another file.
  3. Hover over the Manage Configuration button and click Compare.
  4. Select a configuration to compare the selected file with.
  5. Click the Next () button to skip to the next difference.
  6. Click the Previous () button to skip to the next difference.
  7. Click Done when you’re finished reviewing the differences.

To start the comparison with a different configuration, click Done, then repeat steps 2 through 4.

How to export a configuration

Some devices, such as those from SonicWALL, support Base64 configurations only. To restore a configuration on one of these devices, you must first export the configuration from Auvik, then import the configuration directly on the device.

Exports are in text format.

  1. From a network element (such as a switch), hover over the Documentation button and click Configurations from the entity navigation.
  2. Click the configuration you want to export.
  3. Hover over the Manage Configuration button and click Export.

How to restore a configuration

The restore function within Auvik (described below) works for all devices that aren’t Base64-encoded. Devices that support only Base64 configurations can’t be restored from within Auvik and must be restored from the device directly. To use a file for restore, first export the configuration.

  1. From a network element (such as a switch), hover over the Documentation button and click Configurations from the entity navigation.
  2. Click on the configuration you want to restore.
  3. Hover over the Manage Configuration button and click Restore.
  4. Confirm the configuration restoration by clicking Restore.

Once the restore is complete, the restored configuration appears as the Currently Running configuration in the list of historical backups.

Safety reboots

Whenever you need to change the configuration of a device, it’s best practice to give yourself a way back into the device if an error cuts off your access. Following that best practice, Auvik automatically schedules the device to reload or reboot (where available) in 10 minutes. If the deployment goes well, the reload is cancelled. But if the deployment fails or renders the device unreachable, Auvik automatically reverts to the previous config, ensuring you’re never locked out of the device.

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Comments

  • Avatar
    Craig Debbo

    Wow, this is awesome. How do I audit what the agent is doing? For example, on one of my routers there is nothing in the configuration tab. Is the agent unable to collect a backup or is my agent at a different beta software load?

  • Avatar
    Alex McGarry

    Hi Craig,

    In order for Auvik to backup the config of a device, you’ll need to provide login credentials for that device (SSH or Telnet plus the CLI Enable Password). You can add login credentials for a device on the Discovery page located under the settings cog in the header bar.

    Cheers,

    Alex

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