Customer Name: Netsurion
Industry: Cybersecurity for retail, hospitality, healthcare customers
Location: 514 NE 13th Street, Fort Lauderdale, Florida 33304
Netsurion had basically managed all the network devices manually before selecting Net LineDancer (NetLD) in their large network of 17,000+ devices.
Challenges for configuration managements at Netsurion
There was a Q&A talk with Mark A. Cornwell, CIO of Netsurion as in the following.
The comments below are clear and concrete, which allowed us to easily imagine how Net LineDancer contributes to streamline a large number of tedious updates and tweaks of devices to keep up with fast and never-ending changes nowadays in their cybersecurity network.
What are biggest payoffs since NetLD was deployed ?
Unexpected benefits brought about by NetLD ?
What best 3 features of NetLD have in fact helped improve efficiency,compliance and productivity ?
Where are points that you like most about NetLD ?
What are features that can be taken advantage of for other network management groups ?
Netsurion is a leading provider of cloud-managed IT security services that protect small and medium-sized business information, payment system and on-premise public and private Wi-Fi networks from data breaches and other risks posed by hackers. Netsurion’s patented remote installation technology and PCI compliant cloud-based solutions simplify the implementation process and ongoing support. The company serves the retail, hospitality, healthcare, legal, and insurance sectors.
LogicVein is a leading provider of supporting to eliminate network configuration management cost, frequent errors and a number of updates in the environments where senior and novice engineers work perfectly as a team in comprehensive way.
Our Net LineDancer is targeted to network configuration management with unparalleled price performance. With the tool, users of the product claim that it can process network manual jobs to one-tenth in maximum.
Customer Name: SoftBank Corp.
Industry: Telecommunications / Carrier
Location: Tokyo, Japan Net sales: $2.3B (FY2016)
SoftBank had handled all its network configuration management (NCM) manually for ten years before deciding on Net LineDancer (NetLD) to manage and maintain its Managed CPE-S or CPE bundle carrier services in 2011.
Net LineDancer on Private Cloud
SoftBank Corp., formerly SoftBank Mobile Corp., launched ‘SoftBank’ branded mobile services in Japan in 2006 after it was acquired from Vodafone Group in the same year. Today it is one of the largest telecommunications carriers in Japan. It has over 17,000 employees and its net sales were $2.8B in fiscal year 2016. SoftBank had been doing NCM manually for its Managed CPE-S or CPE bundle carrier services for ten years. At one point SoftBank wanted their subcontractors to claim ownership and maintain the configuration files, but the subs wanted SoftBank own them. SoftBank purchased netLD and this is no longer an issue. “We primarily bought NetLD for configuration changes, but now it is crucial for accessing our customer networks. It would be impossible to do our job now without NetLD.” Kazuhiko Maruko, Network Engineer SoftBank
Selecting an NCM Solution
SoftBank selected Net LineDancer for managing and maintaining Managed CPE-S or CPE bundle carrier services. It allows its subcontractors to access and manage devices with total control via Net LineDancer which has proven convenient and facilitated the unification of their configurations at reasonable cost. SoftBank engineers had considered a Cisco NCM solution, but even if they decided to buy all Cisco equipment in-house, their customers would still use everything else imaginable so Cisco PI would not have worked. According to Kazuhiko Maruko of SoftBank, “NetLD’s vendor coverage is much broader than its competitors. It covers more types of network devices, more supplier products, and provides greater utility.” SoftBank additionally works with several subcontracting network companies and has NetLD managing the NCM for all of it. With NetLD on SoftBank’s cloud, NetLD provides secure access for its subcontractors with SoftBank maintaining total control of each subcontractor’s access and permissions.
Growing Fast and Saving Money
In 2010 SoftBank was manually handling the NCM for over hundreds of customers with the help of several maintenance partner vendors. Engineers had to travel to hundreds of customer locations twice per year (hundreds of trips) costing huge. With NetLD SoftBank was able to scale their business and take their service offering internationally. Currently SoftBank is managing over 10,000+ devices on over a large number of customer networks in United States, Canada and Asia. Keeping up with customer NCM requests used to be a full time job for the team, but now they are able to handle NCM issues quickly, provide appropriate levels of secured access to sub-contractors, and now have time for other important tasks as well. SoftBank employees can even make changes from home now. According to Kazuhiko Maruko of SoftBank, “We primarily bought NetLD for network configuration, but now it is crucial for accessing our managed CPE. It would be i mpossible to do our job now without NetLD.”
The Real Success Story
The real success story has been the development of a great working relationship between SoftBank and LogicVein. SoftBank needed a capable and responsive NCM vendor who would work with them to provide the flexibility and capability in an NCM product they could use. LVI has never stopped working hard to make sure SoftBank and all our customers are happy and productive. LogicVein has turned NetLD into a product our customers find they cannot do without. “LogicVein is very flexible and continually provides us with the changes and features we ask for. It is flexible to provide this level of support.” Kazuhiko Maruko, Network Engineer SoftBank
SoftBank’s Favorite NetLD Features
Manage who, when and how a job has been done:
It is important to manage the history of operations accomplished by partner vendors. History of config changes and access logs can be easily managed and maintained by SoftBank and partner vendors. SoftBank can support inquiries of customers immediately. Access logs are automatically stored, which allows SoftBank to see who did what.
Make changes without remembering login IDs/Passwords:
With credentials linking a devices to NetLD accounts, NetLD allows SoftBank to manipulate devices without thinking about login IDs/Passwords. Allows handling devices without thinking of IDs/Passwords. SoftBank has no need to disclose IDs/Passwords to partner vendors and with NetLD has only to make changes to Credentials of NetLD to recover problems in case of a security incident.
Unique access control per user:
The ability to mix and match 20 types of access controls provides the right access to every user. NetLD provides SoftBank granular control of its users including authority to add or delete an SoftBank SE, SoftBank operator or partner vendors.
LogicVein has been flexible and supportive with changes and functionality SoftBank has needed as they go.
Designed for collaboration:
Net LineDancer for managing and maintaining Managed CPE-S or CPE bundle carrier services. Allows its partner vendors access to manage any number of devices with a total control. Made NCM and the task of unification of their many disparate networks easier and at a reasonable cost.
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A replacement was needed for the SolarWinds’ Orion Network Configuration Manager Software module to back up their configurations in a mixed vendor environment. NCM, while functional, was often clunky and difficult to obtain support for. After staring at the daunting task of getting a RANCID deployment set up, and then keeping it up to date, they started evaluating alternatives and found Net LineDancer.
Back up their configurations in a mixed vendor environment. NCM, while functional, was often clunky and difficult to get support for.
Immediately, they saw the value in Net LineDancer.
“Working with NetLD has been a case of night and day. With SolarWinds NCM, configuration management was an emergency backup that we very rarely referenced and hated having to deal with when it was needed. NetLD on the other hand has had real impact on our network operations efficiency in ways we didn’t expect to get from a configuration management software.”
-Ryan Brown, Senior Network Administrator
As one of the biggest MSP in South Africa, AppCentrix monitors and manages IT resources to accurately pinpoint and project the health, performance, and availability of IT applications and services for their customers in the retail and financial industry. They had been looking for an ideal NCM tool and have decided to deploy Net LineDancer as their network configuration manager.
US Interop 2013 now takes advantage of Net LineDancer to prepare for an extremely large network!
Net LineDancer was adopted as Network Configuration Tool working together with EM7 of ScienceLogic, NMS for a large network and cloud, in Interop Las Vegas in May of 2013.
Net LineDancer Enterprise
The company, as a MSP and Data Center, controls the configuration management of a number of enterprises and government departments. Net LineDancer was selected and deployed because of its unique feature called SmartBridge, handling the same IP addresses scattered across multiple network segments.
Net LineDancer Enterprise version 70,000 nodes license
“When we started, we were sending engineers overseas, on site, to configure the network devices,” says Takeshi Utsumi, an Assistant Team Manager of Sega’s AM Sales Support Team. In deploying a network they call “ALL.Net” that connects all the amusement centers scattered in Asia, they were looking for a way to reduce administrator’s burden of installing and configuring network devices there.
What is Zero-Touch?
Zero-Touch* is a Net LineDancer feature that deploys configurations into remote devices by taking advantage of Cisco IOS AutoInstall and Cisco Networking Services (CNS). As soon as the device is plugged into the network, Net LineDancer will automatically configure it.
Net LineDancer Enterprise For mode details, please see following document:
Sega Corporation Zero-Touch Case Study
The team which consisted of 5 people managed network equipment in Tokyo and Osaka, but only two engineers were experienced enough to operate unsupervised. No one else could perform some of the troubleshooting if there were network issues in their absence. The two engineers were forced work through holidays incase problems occurred while they were out, especially Golden Week or New Year’s Holidays. They installed Net LineDancer and created an internal manual that walked through operations that were dependent on individual’s skills. This allowed less experienced staff to respond to unexpected problems.
Net LineDancer Enterprise version 500 nodes license
Main Functions Used
300 nodes mainly Cisco, Foundry（current：Brocade）equipment on their own network.
Net LineDancer Enterprise version 500 nodes license
When introducing the network devices to their remote locations, their engineers used to go on business trips, after sending the devices on-site. They heard about Net LineDancer while looking for tools to save time and reduce cost. Zero-Touch1, which allowed them to configure devices from a remote location, was applied. However, they asked to take measures since they are required to unbox and power the devices on to confirm the IDs of managed devices by their MAC address. After the spec of Net LineDancer about the Zero-Touch1 feature changed to be able to confirm by serial numbers, instead of MAC addresses, they decided to install Net LineDancer, since it became unnecessary to unbox.
Main Functions Used
1: Zero-Touch feature netLD Zero-Touch is the ability to distribute configuration into remote multi devices by only connecting with the cable. As soon as devices are connected to network initially, the device will be configured automatically. Zero-touch allows engineers to skip the steps of distance business trips, called zero-trip. Zero-Touch has changed the name to Cisco Plug and Play from Net LineDancer ver.14.06.
Mainly Cisco, Yamaha devices
Net LineDancer Enterprise version for 500 nodes was licensed for the trial installation. It has possibilities to increase.
They faced the technical challenge of configuration management of 1,200 various vendors’ devices, being managed at different locations using multiple tools through the CLI. Additionally their handlings took much time to discover by getting update information in case of troubles and the collection of log data required the engineers to work at out-of-hours and initial charge. The SI vendor who maintained their network devices designed a management solution using Net LineDancer to expand their channel allowing them to raise their unit price and differentiate themselves from other competing vendors which only sold equipment and support. Net LineDancer was adoted after the trial after resolving the problems discussed earlier.
Main Functions Used
Net LineDancer Enterprise version 3000 nodes license