OOB core router connectivity wish list

William Herrin bill at herrin.us
Wed Jan 9 16:18:50 UTC 2013


On Wed, Jan 9, 2013 at 9:37 AM, Mikael Abrahamsson <swmike at swm.pp.se> wrote:
> I have together with some other people, collected a wish list for OOB
> support, mainly aimed for core routers.

Hi Mikael,

I generally agree but have several quibbles:


> [P1]: The IP address of the OOB port should be set via DHCP/DHCPv6/SLAAC and
> should have both IPv4 and IPv6 support. If not both, then IPv6 only.

(a) This is a P2 not a P1. Asking the OOB to be critically dependent
on an external network element is dubious to begin with but even if
desired it's usable without.

About the only time you'd strictly *need* dynamic configuration in an
OOB is when directly connecting it to a commodity Internet link. If
you're willing to give your poorly secured and rarely updated OOB a
public IP address, you're a braver man than I am. If you are that
"brave" then you'll need a more robust set of dynamic configuration
tools than just the ones you've listed and you'll also need a dynamic
dns client or some other mechanism for the the OOB to let you know
what addresses it ended up on.

(b) IPv6-only in an OOB won't be broadly acceptable for at least
another 5 years if then. You'd be foolish not to include IPv6 support
in a greenfield design -- the writing is on the wall -- but there are
today very few scenarios in which an IPv4 only OOB would not be
usable.


> [P1]: It should be possible to transfer data using tftp, ftp and scp (ftp
> client on the OOB device, scp being used to transfer data *to* the device
> (OOB being scp server).

For security and performance reasons, FTP has no place in a modern
network. If you're still using it anywhere, you're borrowing grief.
Replace with an http/https client.

TFTP has such a strong legacy of use on routers that its presence
remains just barely tolerable. For now.

Have a look at how HP iLO3 makes use of http to implement virtual
media. You can upload an ISO image to a web server somewhere and then
instruct ilo to mount the URL as a virtual dvdrom. Best of all, if
your management session disconnects, the virtual media remains mounted
via the web server.

Regards,
Bill Herrin



-- 
William D. Herrin ................ herrin at dirtside.com  bill at herrin.us
3005 Crane Dr. ...................... Web: <http://bill.herrin.us/>
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