Projects / ns4


ns4 is a command line configuration management tool that runs on a Unix or Windows based operating system. It allows the automated backup of node (i.e. routers and switches) configurations to an FTP/SFTP server or local media on a daily basis to create configuration archives. It can run ad-hoc commands on multiple nodes as well as custom scripts for automating complex tasks. It uses Perl and allows you to manipulate the output of commands using regular expressions within scripts. Configuration based cartridges are used to specify new node types, allowing the user to extend its functionality in a simple and dynamic way.

Operating Systems

Recent releases

  •  25 Nov 2009 09:00

    Release Notes: This release introduces an SNMP poller which allows OIDs to be defined within the configuration file that ns4 can poll. This allows a simple framework to quickly obtain OID values on the fly from multiple routers. The "-d" command line option now allows a local file to store the output locally instead of sending to a defined transport. The "-x" command line option was also introduced to connect to nodes in a test mode which doesn't actually execute any commands.

    •  12 Oct 2009 08:44

      Release Notes: This release contains a minor fix with regards to line terminators, as some routers were using an unusual terminator of "CRLFCR", which resulted in double lines. Apart from that minor change, there have been some cosmetic cleanups to ns4.

      •  15 Sep 2009 07:52

        Release Notes: This release contains quite a few changes and rewrites. Upgrading is recommended. Optimizations were made to the way large outputs are retrieved. The time taken to fetch output now increases linearly based on the size of the output as opposed to exponentially as before. Support for the "ask" attribute was added, which allows you to remove sensitive attributes from the configuration file and prompts the user for them at run-time. The node/proxy address can be omitted and DNS will be used instead.

        •  12 Aug 2009 11:24

          Release Notes: Apart from a handful of bugfixes, this release adds the “alt_username_prompt” and “alt_password_prompt” options to cartridges and proxies. ns4 has a default understanding of what login prompts to expect so it can send the username and password at the correct times. Some nodes don’t stick to a standard “username:” prompt so this option allows you to override it using a regular expression.

          •  02 Jul 2009 13:44

            Release Notes: This release only fixes a couple of minor cosmetic issues where duplicated lines were being added to outputs when routers were incorrectly terminating lines with "\r\r\n". It also fixes a minor issue with the "cdiff.nss" script where blank lines were being sent to stdout.


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