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Home > Success Center > Network Configuration Manager (NCM) > NCM Documentation > NCM 7.9 Administrator Guide

NCM 7.9 Administrator Guide

Table of contents
  1. NCM features
    1. + Introduction
    2. + Communication options
    3. + Common tasks
    4. + Node management
    5. + Firmware vulnerability data
    6. + Manage end of support and end of sales (EOS)
    7. + Firmware upgrades
    8. + Configuration files
    9. + Compare a config to a baseline or another config
    10. + Real-time change detection
    11. + NCM Device templates
    12. + Sample CLI device command templates
    13. + Device template commands and variables
    14. + Command scripts
    15. + Ensure compliance to policy rules
    16. + Inventory
    17. + Jobs
    18. + Approval system for device configuration changes
    19. + Manage access control lists
    20. + NCM alerts and alert actions
    21. + Config Change reports
    22. + Predefined NCM reports
    23. + Servers for file transfers and email notifications
    24. + Config change templates
    25. + EnergyWise devices
    26. + References
  2. Orion Platform features
    1. + Orion Platform requirements
    2. + Security enhancements and exceptions
    3. + How Orion Platform products work
    4. + Licensing
    5. + Add devices
    6. + Manage devices
    7. + Groups and dependencies 
    8. Groups
      1. Dependencies
    9. + Events
    10. + Hardware health
    11. + Quality of Experience
      1. Packet Analysis
    12. + Agents
      1. Deploy agents
      2. Manage agents
    13. + Syslogs
    14. + Traps
    15. + Alerts
      1. Reduce alerting noise
      2. Create alerts
      3. Available alert actions
    16. + Maps
      1. Worldwide Map or Orion Nodes
      2. Orion Maps
      3. Network Atlas maps
      4. Create Network Atlas maps
      5. Advanced mapping techniques
      6. Advanced map layouts
      7. Display Network Atlas maps
    17. + Thresholds
    18. + Users
    19. + Admin functions and settings
    20. + Custom properties
    21. + Customize Orion Web Console (views, widgets)
      1. Customize the Orion Web Console
      2. Customize views
      3. Customize resources and charts
    22. + High Availability in SolarWinds products
    23. + Web-based reports
    24. + Virtualization
    25. + Polling Engines
    26. + PerfStack
    27. + Monitor cloud instances and VMs
    28. + Monitor containers in the Orion Platform
    29. + Optimize your Orion Platform
    30. + References

This guide provides Information about configuring and using SolarWinds NCM. For installation information, use the SolarWinds Orion Installer. If you are new to NCM, see the NCM Getting Started Guide

NCM 7.9 Administrator Guide

NCM features

This section describes features specific for SolarWinds Network Configuration Manager (NCM). NCM uses common functions of Orion Platform products.

+ Introduction

Get an overview of NCM features.

+ Communication options

See the following topics for information about setting communication options for nodes, applying global device logins, and enabling logging. 

+ Common tasks

Example scenarios show how you can use NCM in different network environments.

+ Node management

NCM helps you manage, organize, and track changes to your network devices, which are known as nodes.

+ Firmware vulnerability data

NCM helps identify risks to network security by detecting potential vulnerabilities in Cisco IOS, Cisco ASA, Cisco Nexus, and Juniper devices.

+ Manage end of support and end of sales (EOS)

Use the EOS resources to search vendor-published end of support and sales dates associated with your NCM devices. 

+ Firmware upgrades

Because security fixes are distributed as new firmware revisions, upgrading firmware helps network administrators correct security vulnerabilities.

+ Configuration files

When nodes are added to NCM, you can download and edit the configuration files of those devices and create an archive of config files for backup.

+ Compare a config to a baseline or another config

Avoid config file "drift" by establishing baselines. SolarWinds NCM can compare configuration files to the established baseline, to another config on the same node, or to a config on a different node.

+ Real-time change detection

When you configure real-time change detection, NCM sends an email notification whenever a device configuration changes.

+ NCM Device templates

Device templates contain device-specific commands that enable SolarWinds NCM to perform actions on a type of device.

+ Sample CLI device command templates

Examples of device command templates for CLI devices are provided.

+ Device template commands and variables

Commands are used to modify and declare the behavior of device templates in SolarWinds NCM. 

+ Command scripts

Automate tasks with command scripts.

+ Ensure compliance to policy rules

Use policy reports to verify that device configurations comply with internal policies and external regulations. 

+ Inventory

Run an inventory scan to get the latest statistics on your managed devices in NCM.

+ Jobs

Use job scheduling to automate the management of network devices and configuration files.

+ Approval system for device configuration changes

You can define a semi-automated approval process for making configuration changes on network devices.

+ Manage access control lists

Use NCM to manage access control list (ACL) rules for Cisco ASA firewalls and Cisco Nexus devices.

+ NCM alerts and alert actions

Learn about the NCM default alert and the alert actions provided by NCM.

+ Config Change reports

You can run a Config Change report at any time, or schedule the report to run regularly.

+ Predefined NCM reports

NCM provides the following predefined reports.

+ Servers for file transfers and email notifications

Use the following topics to configure servers for file transfers and email notifications regarding real time config detection.

+ Config change templates

Config change templates streamline making recurrent and complex configuration changes. Generate and execute accurate sets of CLI commands with a single config change template.

+ EnergyWise devices

you can use NCM in conjunction with NPM to enable and manage your Cisco EnergyWise devices.

+ References

The following sections contain supplemental reference material for SolarWinds NCM.

Orion Platform features

SolarWinds Network Performance Monitor uses the Orion Platform as the core of the SolarWinds IT Management Portfolio. See the Orion Platform Administrator Guide for information about common features like network discovery, dashboards, reporting, alerting, and so on.

Orion Platform Administrator Guide in PDF

Orion Platform Administrator Guide PDF in Simplified Chinese

Orion Platform requirements

Hardware, software, and port requirements for the Orion Platform server and for the SolarWinds Orion database.

+ Security enhancements and exceptions

Configure SSL for the Orion Web Console, enable FIPS, antivirus directory exclusions.

+ How Orion Platform products work

Orion platform products monitor your network through different protocols. A typical installation includes a database server and one or more polling engine servers.

+ Licensing

Activate, add, upgrade or assign licenses with the web-based License Manager in the Orion Web Console.

This Orion Platform feature applies to the following products:

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+ Add devices

Identify the devices you want to monitor and add them to the SolarWinds Orion database.

+ Manage devices

Edit properties of monitored devices, stop monitoring, edit monitoring settings, stop polling devices or mute alerts.

+ Groups and dependencies 

Organize how monitored data is presented in the Orion Web Console to improve or simplify alerts. Set up dependencies to better represent the status of objects on your network.

+ Events

View events, alerts, traps and Syslogs in the Orion Web Console.

+ Hardware health

Get insight into hardware issues on the network. Monitor hardware health based on hardware sensors, such as fan status, power supply status, or temperature.

+ Quality of Experience

Use packet analysis sensors to see packet-level traffic information about key devices and applications on your network.

+ Agents

Deploy agents to collect data for monitoring your network.

+ Syslogs

Configure your devices to send Syslog messages to your Orion Platform product and view them in the Orion Web Console.

+ Traps

View SNMP traps in the Orion Web Console. 

+ Alerts

Get informed about network events. Use or customize the out-of-the-box alerts, or create new alerts tailored to your needs.

+ Maps

See your network devices on maps in the Orion Web Console.

Thresholds

Specify thresholds for monitored metrics. Customize general thresholds or use baselines.

+ Users

Manage Orion Web Console user accounts: set user rights, reset passwords, limit access to network segments based on user accounts, enable authentication with Active Directory.

+ Admin functions and settings

Proxy settings, counter rollovers, view secure data, chart settings auditing settings, and other settings.

+ Custom properties

Specify custom fields to associate with monitored network objects.

+ Customize Orion Web Console (views, widgets)

Log in to the Orion Web Console, customize menus, colors, the logo, and breadcrumbs. Customize views, add widgets and subviews, limit objects on views, specify views for device types. Customize widgets and charts.

+ High Availability in SolarWinds products

Use SolarWinds High Availability to provide failover protection for your Orion server and additional polling engines to reduce data loss.

+ Web-based reports

Generate reports in the Orion Web Console based on the predefined reports for your Orion Platform product. Customize existing reports to fit your needs, create reports, schedule a report to run automatically.

+ Virtualization

Monitor your virtual networks (ESX and ESXi servers, vCenter, VMware) in the Orion Web Console. 

+ Polling Engines

Balance polling using Additional Polling Engines and Additional Web Servers, customize polling and database settings.

+ PerfStack

Visually correlate historical time series data from multiple Orion Platform products and entity types in a single view.

Monitor cloud instances and VMs

To support hybrid environments, the Orion Platform can retrieve data from the Amazon Web Services (AWS) and Microsoft Azure cloud service platforms to track availability, performance, applications, and more for instances and VMs. Examples of data gathered include status, storage capacity, memory usage, and IP addresses.

+ Monitor containers in the Orion Platform

With the Orion Platform, you can monitor containers deployed to nodes in supported environments, such as docker, Docker Swarm, Kubernetes, or Apache Mesos.

+ Optimize your Orion Platform

Learn more about optimizing your Orion Platform deployment.

+ References

Networking glossary, alert variables, and so on.

 

 

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