Automating tasks on your network undoubtedly saves a lot of time and effort for you, but the key is to identify the right tasks that need/can be automated.
This is why network automation is often seen as an art rather than an exact science as it depends to a large extent on the structure of an organization and its dynamic requirements.
This also means that there is no specific definition or rule for automation and the choice of tasks completely depends on the network administrator and the organization’s operations.
Due to such a fluid nature, network automation includes a wide variety of tools that do anything from performance monitoring to IP address management and everything in between.
Some network automation tools perform only specific operations such as configuration management while others are a suite comprising of many tools that handle different tasks and through it all, even comply with the requirements of many standards.
Though there are hundreds of network automation software and tools, let’s take a look at some of the most prominent ones.
Here’s the Best Network Automation Tools & Software:
SolarWinds Network Automation Manager is an integrated automation tool that is ideal for large and complex environments with thousands of nodes and devices.
Key Features: The key features of this tool are:
- Scales well for enterprise networks
- Provides insights into many network-related metrics such as network availability, performance, configuration, IP address management, and more.
- Can be customized to meet individual preferences
- Quick and easy to deploy.
- Reduces network outages and detects, diagnoses, and fixes network problems at the earliest.
- Sends alerts on network bandwidth performance and traffic patterns in real-time.
- Helps to quickly recover from configuration problems and hardware faults.
- Determines the switches that are nearing capacity
- Monitors the performance of WAN routers
- Manages IP addresses, their usage, and conflicts
- Protects against operating system crashes
Pricing: Contact the sales team for a demo and custom pricing and a free demo.
Download: You can download a fully functional 30-day free trial.
2. ManageEngine Network Configuration Manager
ManageEngine’s Network Configuration Manager is a complete change, configuration, and compliance management (NCCM) solution for network devices.
Features: The important features of this Network Configuration Manager are:
- Allows you to schedule device configuration backup.
- Tracks user activity and changes by comparing the different versions of a configuration file
- Prevents unauthorized changes to your environment.
- Provides compliance auditing
- Automates configuration management tasks
- Makes it easy to apply configuration changes to devices in bulk.
- Supports the products of more than 200 vendors such as Cisco, Juniper, HP, and more.
- Searches configuration files to find the information you want.
- Generates in-depth reports.
- Offers role-based access control
Pricing: Contact the sales team for a custom quote.
Download: Click here to download a trial version.
3. TrueSight Network Automation
TrueSight Network Automation from BMC Software is designed to improve security by having better control over vulnerabilities and access to confidential data.
Key Features: The salient features of this tool are:
- Offers automated vulnerability management to analyze vulnerabilities within a network and respond to threats across different devices.
- Integrates with the NIST National Vulnerability database to identify vulnerabilities and upgrade devices when needed.
- Provides automated rollback and change tracking to drive configuration changes across hundreds of network devices.
- Helps to comply with regulatory standards such as CIS and DISA.
- Makes it easy to deploy new physical or virtual network devices
- Generates reports
- Uses best practices to analyze compliance risks
Pricing: Contact the sales team for pricing.
Download: Click here to download a trial version.
4. Net LineDancer
Net LineDancer from Logic Vein is a configuration management tool that makes it easy for network administrators to stay on top of the configuration changes on their network devices.
Key Features: Here is a look at some of the features of Net LineDancer.
- Allows you to manage your network from a single location even if the network has multiple subnets.
- Comes with an integrated terminal proxy to authenticate users
- Provides a full audit of inventory management
- Easy to use and install
- Scales well up to 80,000 nodes
- Supports BYOD, IoT, and additional adaptors if needed
- Compares across file versions to identify changes
- Offers active directory server integration
- Gives you the option to create drafts of configurations.
- Integrates well with other network management platforms
Pricing: You pay for only what you use and the subscription is node-based. Contact the sales team for a quote.
Download: Click here for a 30-day free trial.
WeConfig from WesterMo is a network configuration, control, and management tool that is sure to save you thousands of hours of time and effort, thanks to its many features.
Key Features: Some of the main features of WeConfig are:
- Simple to use and easy to install
- Deploys configuration updates in bulk
- Minimizes the risk of configuration errors
- Optimizes network security
- Reduces the risk of downtime
- Comes with many security aspects to eliminate the possibility of unauthorized access
- Provides high network reliability
Pricing: Get in touch with the sales team.
Download: No trial version is available
To conclude, network automation tools and software must be an integral part of every network administrator’s toolkit because it helps to automate many routine tasks and through it, frees time and effort to address more challenging issues.
Many times, these tools help to comply with important industry standards as well.
The above products are some of the most popular automation tools available today.