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Home > Success Center > Network Automation Manager > Network Automation Manager 2017.3 Release Notes

Network Automation Manager 2017.3 Release Notes

Last updated: October 9, 2017

These release notes describe the key features of Network Automation Manager, a SolarWinds product that contains the following components:

  • NPM 12.2
  • NTA 4.2.3
  • UDT 3.3
  • VNQM 4.4.1
  • NCM 7.7
  • IPAM 4.5.2
  • SolarWinds High Availability

They also provide information about upgrades and describe work-arounds for known issues.

New features and improvements

Support for Cisco ASA devices

Network Insight for Cisco ASA automates the management of your ASA infrastructure to provide visibility and help ensure service availability. Network Insight for Cisco ASA provides the following capabilities.

Support for multiple contexts

The Cisco ASA (Adaptive Security Appliance) provides multiple security contexts on a single device. To add a Cisco ASA device with multiple contexts to NCM, first add the admin context using its IP address. All other contexts will be automatically discovered, and you can add each context as a separate node. You can then configure NCM to back up and restore configurations for all contexts accessible via SSH or Telnet from the NCM server.

Cisco ASA access control list management

Use NCM to help you manage the access control lists (ACLs) on your Cisco ASA firewalls:

  • Automatically discover ACLs, which zones they are assigned to, and what interfaces are assigned to those zones.
  • Identify ACLs that are configured but not applied.
  • Use the Firewall Rule Browser to:
    • Visualize ACLs configured on the ASA, broken into fields and displayed in columns for easier readability.
    • Search and filter within ACLs.
    • Show the hit count for rules.
    • Detect shadowed and redundant rules. These are rules that will never be executed because the affected traffic has already been processed by a previous rule.

Cisco ASA firmware upgrades

Use NCM's firmware upgrade capabilities to easily upgrade the firmware for your Cisco ASA firewalls.

>> Read more about Network Insight for Cisco ASA firewalls.

Poll Cisco ASA devices

A new poller has been implemented for Cisco Adaptive Security Appliance (ASA) devices. This polls the ARP table through CLI.

To enable:

The device must be already added as an SNMP node, so add the device as usual using Network Discovery or AddNode wizard.

  1. Open Edit Properties, and check Advanced Cisco ASA Monitoring in Cisco ASA block.
  2. Fill in the form, and click TEST button for validation. udt_3.3_cisco_1.png
  3. Submit the form, wait for at least the polling interval, and check device ports.udt_3.3_cisco_2.png
  4. If the UDT setting UDT.UI.ShowAlsoIndirectConnections is switched on, the port endpoints should be visible under Port Details control on the Node Details page. udt_3.3_cisco_3.png

Network Insight for ASA devices

Monitor your Cisco ASA firewalls with NPM - monitor VPN tunnels, and get the basic visibility for troubleshooting tunnels with issues. Use NPM to understand the health of the platform, including power supplies or High Availability status.

  • Site-to-site VPN tunnel monitoring including tunnel status, bandwidth usage, and phase completion.
  • Remote access VPN including user session history.
  • High Availability including failover readiness and failover detection.

You can integrate Network Insight for ASAs  with NCM to see what access lists are applied to individual interfaces and review the access lists.

» Read more about Network Insight for Cisco ASA firewalls

Secure the connection between your Orion server and your SQL server

Increase your security compliance by using Windows authentication for both day-to-day data storage and retrieval between your Orion server and your SQL server and during the initial setup of your database server in the Configuration Wizard. 

Do not use a Windows account with a password policy applied.

You can also enable SSL directly in the Configuration Wizard to encrypt the information exchanged between your Orion server or additional polling engines and your SQL server, independent of SSL settings on your SQL server.

SSL must be configured on your SQL server to utilize this feature.

SQL AlwaysOn Availability Groups in a MultiSubnet Failover configuration

Leverage MS SQL AlwaysOn Availability Groups in your HA configuration so your database is also highly available and disaster recoverable.

Improved Dashboards and Widgets

The new Customize Page significantly simplifies and streamlines how you build your dashboards or views. Drag and drop resources, now known as widgets, exactly where you want them on your page, including on to blank areas to create new columns.

  • Start searching for widgets in two clicks from any customizable page.
  • Mark favorite widgets so you can quickly add them to new dashboards or pages.
  • Drag and drop widgets directly on to the pages or move widgets to new locations.

» Read more about dashboards

Multi-subnet High Availability

Distribute HA pool members to different subnets in this new update to SolarWinds High Availability for near instantaneous, automated failover to a secondary server on a different subnet. Create an HA pool , update your secondary server, and activate HA in your current Orion environment just as easily as before. 

» Read more about multi-subnet High Availability (DR)

Improved Performance Analysis Dashboards

Get both broad and in-depth visibility into your environment by correlating disparate data points across your infrastructure, including on-premise, cloud, and hybrid environments, in easy-to-read charts.

This version of PerfStack™:

  • Includes Real-Time Polling at approximately one second intervals for selected metrics.
  • Increases the number of supported metrics and products
  • Lets you view the data behind supported charts with the Data Explorer.
  • Enables Drag and drop entities to the chart area.
  • Can open an analysis project directly from an entity with common metrics already added.
  • Lets you access the details page for an entity from the Performance Analysis dashboard.

» Read more about these changes

Updated Manage Nodes workflow

The new Manage Entities page presents information about your nodes in a more intuitive fashion, including filtering options and contextual management options.

  • Search your entities using the display name or IP address.
  • Sort entities by display name, status, or IP address.
  • Quickly view which nodes are muted and resume alerts with one click.
  • Add more information by editing the rows

» Read more about these changes

Device template management in the Orion Web Console

Device template management and CLI (command line interface) settings are now available from the Orion Platform. As a result, the location of certain features and settings has changed, as described below. 

To access device template management options

  1. Choose Settings > All Settings.
  2. Under Node & Group Management, click Manage Device Templates.

To assign a device template to a node

  1. Choose Settings > Manage Nodes.
  2. Select one or more nodes and click Edit Properties.
  3. Select Yes from the Manage node(s) with NCM drop-down menu.
  4. Under CLI Device Template, select the device template.

To access CLI settings (Session Tracing and Telnet/SSH settings)

CLI settings now include Session Tracing and Telnet/SSH settings. 

  1. Choose Settings > All Settings.
  2. Under Product Specific Settings, choose CLI settings.

New customer installation

For information about installing Network Automation Manager, see the Network Automation Manager Installation Guide.

Before you upgrade!

If you are upgrading from a previous version, be aware of the following considerations:

  • When upgrading to NTA 4.2.3, if you added a site binding to a host name before you upgrade, you must bind the Orion Web Console to a fully qualified domain name (FQDN). See this article.
  • When upgrading to NTA 4.2.3 with custom menus, you can not see the Performance Dashboard link in the menu. For details, see this article.
  • After NTA 4.2.2, future releases will no longer support Windows OS 2008 and 2008 R2 and Microsoft SQL Server 2008 R2. SolarWinds recommends that you upgrade to Windows Server 2012, 2012 R2, or 2016 at your earliest convenience. For more information, see Deprecation notices notices.
  • Always use the Product Upgrade Advisor to build your upgrade path.
  • See the NTA Upgrade Guide for more detail.

If you are upgrading from a previous version, be aware of the following considerations:

  • Always use the Product Upgrade Advisor to build your upgrade path.
  • Check your port requirements between versions. RabbitMQ messaging was added, and the new ports may show up in a port scanner.
  • After VNQM 4.4, future releases will no longer support Windows OS 2008 and 2008 R2 and Microsoft SQL Server 2008 R2. SolarWinds recommends that you upgrade to Windows Server 2012, 2012 R2, or 2016 at your earliest convenience. For more information, see End of support notices.

  • When upgrading to VNQM 4.4.1, if you added a site binding to a host name before you upgrade, you must bind the Orion Web Console to a fully qualified domain name (FQDN). See this article.

  • When upgrading to VNQM 4.4.1 with custom menus, you cannot see the Performance Dashboard link in the menu. For details, see this article.

  • When upgrading on the Additional Poller, you may receive this error " The license we have for Orion Scalability Engine is outdated". See this article for details to resolve.

  • For more information about upgrading SolarWinds VNQM, see the VNQM Upgrade Guide.

If you are upgrading from a previous version, the upgrade will make the following changes to any existing device templates:

  • When you upgrade, NCM device templates are migrated to the Orion Platform. If a template with the same name already exists on the Orion Platform, the prefix "NCM" is added to the NCM template. 
  • Migrated templates are assigned to Orion nodes based on their assignment to NCM nodes. If the upgrader attempts to assign an NCM template to an Orion node but the Orion node already has a template assigned, it is marked as a conflict. You are notified of any conflicts after the upgrade and can resolve them then.  
  • Templates are assigned by ID instead of by name. 

How to upgrade

If you are upgrading from a previous version, use the following resources to plan and implement your upgrade:

  • Use the Product Upgrade Advisor to determine your upgrade path. Based on your current environment and versions, the Product Upgrade Advisor provides an ordered list of how to proceed with the upgrade.
  • If you are upgrading:
  • When you are ready, download the upgrade package from the SolarWinds Customer Portal.

Known issues

Issue: Interface indices are maintained in both the Interfaces table and the NPM_Routing table of the SolarWinds database. Because these tables are polled on different polling intervals, the same interface may have different indices in each table as interfaces are remapped on independent polling intervals.

Issue: After the upgrade to NPM 12.0 and later, custom F5 alerts and reports might stop working because the database structure changed.

Work-around: Review the out-of-the box alerts and reports, and if none match your customized alerts and reports, re-create the F5 alerts and reports.

Issue: If you install both NCM and NPM, the Node Details page contains two sections where you can choose a device template (Communication and CLI Device Template). 

Resolution: Specify the device template in the Communication section. 

Issue: After installing or upgrading to NCM 7.7, you attempt to view the access control lists (ACLs) for a Cisco ASA firewall, but none are listed.

Resolution: Download the running config for the device, or wait until the scheduled download occurs. NCM does not display ACLs until the running config has been downloaded.

IPAM 4-5-2 Release Notes

Legal notices

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