Do you want to backup all your router configurations in one location? Keep them under revision control? Also include their hardware specs, modules etc? grep for serial numbers or configuration directives in all of them? Execute a series of command in some of them? Generate graphs of your network topology automagically? Run security audits on your configs? See what changed last night by other co-workers?
Meet RANCID, the Really Awesome New Cisco confIg Differ, by Shrubbery Networks!
RANCID monitors a router’s (or more generally a device’s) configuration, including software and hardware (cards, serial numbers, etc) and uses CVS or Subversion to maintain history of changes.
RANCID does this by the very simple process summarized here:
- login to each device in the router table (router.db),
- run various commands to get the information that will be saved,
- cook the output; re-format, remove oscillating or incrementing data,
- email any differences from the previous collection to a mail list,
- and finally commit those changes to the revision control system
Rancid currently supports Cisco routers, Catalyst switches, Juniper routers, F5 devices, HP Procurve switches and a host of others.
A possible alternative is ZipTie, nowadays known as NetworkAuthority Inventory by AlterPoint.