SPAN and Nexus / ACI platform caveats and limitations

First of all, there is no way I can make a complete, comprehensive list of caveats and limitations on all the different Nexus platforms and with all the different major revisions, modules and linecards. My aim is to capture some of the major gotchas and meaty details specific to each platform. For detailed guidelines and limitations, please see references end of end of the blog.


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Million dollar monitoring solutions vs Solarwinds

TL;DR summary: Before finalizing on a million-dollar network monitoring solution, be sure to consider and trial at least a few smaller vendors, new comers and open-source solutions. You may be surprised at their breadth, capability and value. And no, Solarwinds did not pay me to write this blog post! ūüėČ

10+ years ago, Solarwinds had a bad reputation for not scaling, being slow, buggy, etc. In the last 7-8 years, it has really transformed, and is a different company, with product portfolio that offers amazing value on several fronts.

Having worked very¬†closely with CA Spectrum/eHealth, Riverbed/OPNet SteelCentral, Nimsoft (purchased by CA), IBM Tivoli ITNM, HP BTO/OpenView, Cacti (open source), Observium/Libre NMS (open source), Zenoss (open source), WhatsUpGold, InterMapper, Cisco DCNM, Cisco Prime/Works¬†and Solarwinds in the last decade, I continue to stay impressed with the usability, feature-set, price-point and scalability offered by Solarwinds products compared to it’s competitors.


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Make your Android phone read books to you!

Update: Please see newer updated post with new video here instead:

I’ve read over 150 books in the last 4 years! How? I haven’t actually ‘read’ them, but have had them read out to me by my smartphone. I listened to these books while driving, riding the subway, exercising, and during other idle times. Many of these, I read even two or in some cases three times.¬†This included various genres: fiction, psychological, technical, spiritual, business, etc. Here is a video showing how to set up your Android phone to read books to you:

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Learn to code in Python for only $25!

Consider learning Python. It will help you with your current job, make you more marketable for a promotion and other better jobs, and help you get ahead of the SDN curve.


You don’t need to become a full-time hard-core programmer. You just need to learn enough to be able to understand and use code that the very altruistic open-source community is constantly producing – and return the favour if you end up making something useful too. Learning to code in Python will take about 100-150 hours of your time, but, in turn will save you thousands of hours in the future. After trying a few different Python courses, I discovered this one, which is I think is THE BEST networking focused Python course, and only costs $25 USD. Mihai, the instructor, starts from scratch, assuming you don’t even know how to spell Python, and goes from there.
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Best resources for keeping up with Networking

In one my previous blog posts, we covered “Best resources for learning Networking”. In this post, I will attempt to cover some of the best resources I’ve used to keep up with the changes in the Networking world.


This is going to be a very subjective post. Depending on your area of expertise and mix of vendors being utilized at your organization, your resources for keeping up with networking may be very different.

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Learning to learn!

Learning is itself a skill – just like riding a bicycle or swimming is a skill. Treating it as a skill, and working to improve that skill is essential for almost all careers, but especially important for careers in Information Technology which require constant upkeep with new trends and technologies.

First of all, why should you listen to my advice? Actually you shouldn’t – as I wouldn’t be giving my own advice or “wisdom”. ¬†I’d instead be presenting ideas from academics and scholars who have professionally studied human memory, brain development and learning. Also, these are the ideas I used to attain two CCIEs and numerous other certifications. Continue reading “Learning to learn!”

IOS and NX-OS Ping Script using TCL

There are many situations in which you may need to ping a large number of IP addresses. You can use the Tcl (usually pronounced “tickle”) shell built-in in both IOS and NX-OS to accomplish this task.

Simply replace the below IP addresses and VRF (where applicable) with your own, and copy/paste the script into your IOS or NX-OS based device.


foreach address {

} {ping $address re 2

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Best resources for learning Networking


After completing two CCIEs and numerous other certifications over the past 10+ years, I can certainly say that I have been through my fair share of training.  As many fellow CCIEs can probably appreciate, learning never stops, not even with two CCIEs, so I continue to go through training from different vendors and OEMs on different products.
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