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What is NetDevOps?

Author : PyNet Labs
Last Modified: April 12, 2024 
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Managing network systems using traditional CLI-based tools makes network engineers face a lot of difficulties. Some of these are poor communication, slow deployments, and a lack of visibility across the technology. This has led to network problems, security risks, and low-level performance. That is why, NetDevOps was introduced to provide relief to network engineers by adopting DevOps in network infrastructure for continuous development.

Additionally, Cisco is a major promoter of DevOps for Network Automation, and has rigorously brought concepts and labs into the DevNet Expert training that allows students to learn advanced skills and move into senior-level positions with better pay and more respect in the world of Network Automation. Therefore, this is the best time to gain skills in Cisco NetDevOps and build a bright career in Network Automation.

In this blog we will understand the concepts of it in depth but before that let us understand the true meaning of NetDevOps.

What is NetDevOps?

NetDevOps is an approach that involves bringing together NetOps and DevOps practices and tooling to develop collaboration, efficiency, and automation. In other words, it is a method of building network automation into the application development process so that the application can meet requirements and be programmed to create networking resources as needed. It allows to dynamically observe, change, and understand how apps interact with the network environment.

Cisco NetDevOps, with its focus on automation, is a perfect fit for CCIE professionals. It includes both new tools and new strategies that enable automation in the development and management of network infrastructure. That’s why, it is becoming big now, and every organization looks for professionals who can plan, design, develop, and manage complex automation-driven network environments. Furthermore, it enables organizations to streamline IT processes and prioritize faster and more accurate software releases while reducing costs and improving security.

Elements of NetDevOps

Below are some of the core elements that allow network management to be built across a wide range of different platforms and networking areas.

  • In NetDevOps, APIs and REST/RPC are used to drive software programmability of hardware.
  • Git repositories are used as a configuration source of truth for software development.
  • NetDevOps tools are used for instrumentation and automation/orchestration.
  • NetDevOps pipelines are used to ensure consistent, repeatable testing and deployment.

These elements allow organizations to advance their network infrastructure, accelerate innovation, and provide better experiences for users and clients. Let us now understand when we use this technology.

When do we use NetDevOps?

NetDevOps can be used in several ways to enhance network management and automation such as:

  • It focuses on the need for collaboration between network and development operations teams that allows increasing an organization’s ability to deliver applications and services at high velocity.
  • It is used to efficiently maintain network system configuration by creating templates using tools like Jinja2 and applying those templates to different systems. This makes it easier to understand that system configurations are consistent and up to date.
  • Many difficulties arise when managing a network, including manual configuration, which is time consuming and prone to errors. However, NetDevOps reduces reliance on manual intervention with automation tools and processes resulting in faster deployment of network modifications, increased network stability and reduced downtime.
  • Automating security tasks such as vulnerability scanning, access control, and patch management can increase network security. Network engineers quickly detect and resolve security errors using automated security tools that minimize the risk of data breaches and other security threats.

Network DevOps Tools

Here are some of the key DevOps tools one needs to know about for networking.

  • Terraform
  • Git
  • Python
  • GitHub/GitLab
  • Jenkins
  • Ansible
  • Docker

Advantages of NetDevOps

Here are some of the advantages that NetDevOps provides network engineers and organizations:

  • It enables increased efficiency and reduction in downtime due to less time and effort of manual network changes.
  • It also enables better collaboration between network engineers and IT ops for higher efficiency and better communication.
  • NetDevOps allows to reduce errors, downtime and automate testing and deployment which can contribute to increased network reliability.
  • In the context of software development, advanced development practices such as CI/CD enable incremental and rapid network improvements.
  • Automation reduces the need for manual tasks and manual configuration which is time-consuming and error prone.

Along with the benefits, the organization may also have to face some challenges.

Challenges with NetDevOps

Here are some challenges –

  • When adopting NetDevOps, it can be difficult to overcome cultural resistance and develop collaboration between teams.
  • It requires a combination of networking, automation skills, and programming, it can be difficult to provide easily within traditional networking teams.
  • With automation tools and IaC frameworks, new complexities arise that must be carefully explored when maintaining complex network infrastructure.
  • It provides automation and integration that solves security challenges such as network configuration and ensures the integrity and confidentiality of sensitive data.

Now, if you are interested in building a career in Cisco NetDevOps then let’s get on the learning path.

Learning path for Cisco NetDevOps

The Cisco NetDevOps helps network engineers become familiar with multiple tools and technologies to enhance skills in areas such as programming, scripting, version control, and cloud technologies. In addition, organizations also invest in training programs and certification for their engineers who efficiently plan, design, and deploy networks.

Below are various tools and techniques that every NetDevOps engineers should know about –

  • Python: It is a well-known programming language that is easy to learn and has many libraries and frameworks that allow network automation.
  • Matplotlib: It is a Python library used for data visualization, that is, it can generate charts and graphs according to network data.
  • Nornir: It is a Python automation framework that simplifies network automation tasks by providing a simple and consistent way to connect to network devices using Python.
  • Textfsm: It is a Python library for parsing semi-structured text data. It can be used to extract data from the output of CLI commands on network devices.
  • Django: It is a Python web framework that allows creating web-based network management applications.
  • Jinja2: Itis a Python template engine that creates configuration files for network systems. It helps in creating customized templates as per the specific device configuration.
  • Netmiko: It is a Python library that makes it easy to connect to network devices and execute commands.
  • Eve-NG: It is a network emulation platform that simulates network topology and test configurations.
  • Pandas: It is a Python library used for analysis and data manipulation. In other words, it is capable of generating reports and analyzing network data.
  • MariaDB: It is an open-source relational database management system used to store network data.

With these tools and technologies, one can automate network tasks and increase network management and efficiency with NetDevOps practices.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q1 – What is the role of NetDevOps?

NetDevOps automates modifications to the network to shorten the network delivery lifecycle, treats the network as code to allow version control, and reliably tests changes to ensure quality and consistency.

Q2 – What is the aim of NetDevOps?

It aims to integrate automation, virtualization, and APIs into network infrastructure and create seamless collaboration between development and operations teams.

Q3 – How does network automation work?

Network automation provides tools to continuously maximize network efficiency and functionality through tools to automate network and security provisioning and management.

Q4 – Is network automation the future?

Yes, because with the rise of digitalization, every organization is taking advantage of network automation to ensure a secure, reliable, and agile network infrastructure.


In this blog, we discussed NetDevOps, why it is used in modern networking, its elements, and much more. Therefore, we now understand that applications and services can be delivered at higher velocity by leveraging NetDevOps practices. It means faster turnaround and shorter network delivery lifecycles. Moreover, if you want to pursue a career in this technology or the network automation industry, DevNet Expert Training will help you achieve the same.

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