0

Can these switches be backed up automatically and pushed to a remote server via FTP?

I attempt to find a way to automate the process of creating periodic backups of switches and sending them to a remote server via FTP. I am interested in learning if it is possible to do so for the following switch models:

  • IBM/Lenovo G8052
  • Force10 s55
  • Dell s3048
  • Dell s4048

I cannot find proper documentation about any of these systems and how to back up the systems or if it possible to automate the backup process.

Is this possible for any of these systems?

Is possible to automatically create backups of any of these switches and push them to a remote server via FTP?

What is the process for that?

Are there any alternatives or workarounds for achieving the desired result?

2
  • You can push backups from the devices, but you need to log into them to do it. You use a network management tool (recommendations are explicitly off-topic here) to do it for you. The tool logs into the device and pushes the configuration. The devices themselves do not do this.
    – Ron Maupin
    Apr 24, 2023 at 20:53
  • Some (not all) switches, e.g. H3C Comware, can run scheduled jobs that could include a configuration backup initiated from the device itself
    – Mintra
    Apr 25, 2023 at 8:01

2 Answers 2

2

Legally required notice: I work for Dell.

This is how to do it on OS10: https://grantcurell.github.io/Backup%20OS10%20Config%20with%20Ansible/ using Ansible

Playbook

---
- name: Setting up localhost for saving config
  hosts: localhost
  gather_facts: yes
  tasks:
    - block:
        - name: Generating backup folder name in localhost
          set_fact:
             target_folder: "{{ backup_folder }}/{{ ansible_date_time.iso8601 }}"
        - name: Create config_backup folder
          file:
            path: "{{ target_folder }}"
            state: directory
        - debug:
            msg: "Config files are to be backed up at {{target_folder}}"
      delegate_to: localhost
      run_once: True
- name: Backup os10 running configurations
  hosts: os10
  gather_facts: False
  connection: network_cli
  tasks:
    - name: Fetch OS10 running configuration
      dellos10_command:
        commands: show running
      register: sh_runn
    - name: Save config to file
      copy:
        content: "{{ sh_runn.stdout | replace('\\n', '\n') }}"
        dest: "{{hostvars.localhost.target_folder}}/{{inventory_hostname}}_os10_show_run"
      delegate_to: localhost
    - debug:
        msg: "Config files are to be backed up at {{hostvars.localhost.target_folder}}"
      run_once: true

Inventory

all:
  vars:
    backup_folder: "/root/backup"
  children:
    os10:
      hosts:
        192.168.1.169:
          ansible_become: 'yes'
          ansible_become_method: enable
          ansible_command_timeout: 120
          ansible_connection: ansible.netcommon.network_cli
          ansible_network_os: dellemc.os10.os10
          ansible_password: admin
          ansible_user: admin
        192.168.1.170:
          ansible_become: 'yes'
          ansible_become_method: enable
          ansible_command_timeout: 120
          ansible_connection: ansible.netcommon.network_cli
          ansible_network_os: dellemc.os10.os10
          ansible_password: admin
          ansible_user: admin

Future Methods

I also put in a request with our product group recently to make it so that you could have a backup created on a remote target whenever a user enters configure mode. We're super early in that process and I didn't ask for a high priority so extremely rough estimate (don't hold me to it) is sometime next year for that.

Other Vendors

Pretty much every network vendor supports Ansible these days so that would be my go to choice. Have the playbook launch via a cron job against your infrastructure and put it all in a timestamped backup folder on a remote target.

Minor Note

Dell bought Force10 so Force10 = Dell unless you mean the really old switches that are still branded as Force10 pre-acquisition.

1

If these switches have command line interfaces (I believe they do) then a common way to take backups is via that command line interface by dumping out the equivalent of Cisco's show running-config command via SSH.

The traditional tool for automating this was RANCID, a more modern successor along the same lines is Oxidized. Even more trendy yet is Ansible which can be used for a variety of network device automation including backup.

To push config from the switch you should connect to the CLI and see if there are commands along the lines of copy running-config tftp/sftp/ftp (if, as you say, you can't lay hands on proper documentation you'll have to rely on some trial and error/built-in CLI documentation). Start with copy ? and see what options you are given, then try to follow your nose from there.

3
  • I am looking for a way to push backups from the switches to a remote server, not to pull them, for security reasons.
    – jrogers
    Apr 24, 2023 at 20:21
  • OK have amended the answer to add some stuff about copying configs from the command line. Not sure why that is necessarily any more secure than pulling them though.
    – Mintra
    Apr 24, 2023 at 20:37
  • 1
    @jrogers Just use a simple automation server to pull the configs using SSH, SFTP or SCP and put them on your backup server.
    – Zac67
    Apr 24, 2023 at 20:43

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.