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README.rst

No Maintenance Intended
https://raw.githubusercontent.com/robphoenix/diffios/master/docs/_static/logo.png

diffios is a Python library that provides a way to compare Cisco IOS configurations against a baseline template, and generate an output detailing the differences between them.

Where more traditional diff tools, such as Python's difflib library, consider lines independently and their order as important, diffios considers hierarchical configuration blocks independently and pays no mind to the order of the lines, only whether they are present or not, in the same way a Cisco device would.

This means we can declare our expectations in a baseline template, and then compare our device configurations against it. diffios will generate an output which details where our device configurations differ from our expectations. For elements we expect to vary, such as hostnames and IP addresses, diffios makes use of variables, and will ignore pre-defined junk lines that bear no relevance on our configuration.

The goal of diffios is to make the compliance auditing of large network estates more manageable.

Travis Version Python Versions Status Coveralls Read the Docs Code Climate

Installation

Install via pip

pip install diffios

Usage examples

We'll need a baseline template that we expect all of our devices to conform to. This can be any kind of text file, .txt, .conf, .cfg or however you store your device configuration files. It can also be a Python list if you want.

Here we have a simple baseline.txt file.

version 15.3
!
hostname ABC{{ SITE_ID }}RT01
!
!
ip domain name diffios.dev
!
username admin privilege 15 secret 5 {{ SECRET }}
!
interface Loopback0
 ip address {{ LOOPBACK_IP }} 255.255.255.255
!
!
interface FastEthernet0/1
 description *** Link to Core ***
 ip address {{ FE_01_IP_ADDRESS }} 255.255.255.0
 duplex auto
 speed auto
!
interface FastEthernet0/2
 no ip address
 shutdown
!
interface Vlan100
 description User
 ip address {{ VLAN100_IP }} 255.255.255.0
!
interface Vlan200
 description Corporate
 ip address {{ VLAN200_IP }} 255.255.255.0
 no shutdown
!
!
line vty 0 4
 exec-timeout 5 0
 login local
 transport input ssh
 transport output ssh
!
!
end

Within this baseline file we can use variables, defined by the double curly braces ({{ }}), in place of changeable elements such as hostnames and IP addresses.

We can then collect the output from a show run command from the device we want to compare and save it in a file. Here we have a configuration file, device_01.txt, that has a number of differences to our baseline.

Building configuration...

Current configuration : 1579 bytes
!
! Last configuration change at 12:32:40 UTC Thu Oct 27 2016
! NVRAM config last updated at 16:10:30 UTC Tue Nov 8 2016 by admin
version 15.3
!
hostname ABC12345RT01
!
!
ip domain name diffios.dev
!
interface Loopback0
 ip address 192.168.100.1 255.255.255.255
!
!
interface FastEthernet0/1
 description *** Link to Core ***
 ip address 192.168.0.1 255.255.255.128
 duplex auto
 speed auto
!
interface FastEthernet0/2
 ip address 192.168.0.2 255.255.255.0
 duplex auto
 speed auto
!
interface Vlan100
 description User
 ip address 10.10.10.1 255.255.255.0
!
interface Vlan300
 description Corporate
 ip address 10.10.10.2 255.255.255.0
 no shutdown
!
ip route 0.0.0.0 0.0.0.0 192.168.0.2
!
!
line vty 0 4
 exec-timeout 5 0
 login local
 transport input telnet ssh
 transport output telnet ssh
!
!
end

Device configurations can often contain junk lines that are going to show up as differences but that really we don't care about. Lines such as Building configuration....

We can add these lines to a separate file that we pass to diffios as a list of lines we'd like to ignore. Each line in this file will be evaluated as a regular expression, so to match ! NVRAM config last updated at 16:10:30 UTC Tue Nov 8 2016 by admin we only have to add something like NVRAM config last updated.

This file can be named whatever you like, here we have quite sensibly named file ignore.txt. This can also be a regular Python list.

Building configuration...
Current configuration
Last configuration change
NVRAM config last updated

So, now that we have our configurations ready we can compare them.

>>> import diffios
>>>
>>> baseline = "baseline.txt"
>>> comparison = "device_01.txt"
>>> ignore = "ignore.txt"
>>>
# We initialise a diffios Compare() object with our three files.
# The ignore file is optional, and defaults to an empty list.
>>> diff = diffios.Compare(baseline, comparison, ignore)
# From this Compare object we can see the differences between our
# configurations using the delta() method.
>>> print(diff.delta())
--- baseline
+++ comparison

-   1: interface FastEthernet0/1
-       ip address {{ FE_01_IP_ADDRESS }} 255.255.255.0
-   2: interface FastEthernet0/2
-       no ip address
-       shutdown
-   3: interface Vlan200
-       description Corporate
-       ip address {{ VLAN200_IP }} 255.255.255.0
-       no shutdown
-   4: line vty 0 4
-       transport input ssh
-       transport output ssh
-   5: username admin privilege 15 secret 5 {{ SECRET }}

+   1: interface FastEthernet0/1
+       ip address 192.168.0.1 255.255.255.128
+   2: interface FastEthernet0/2
+       ip address 192.168.0.2 255.255.255.0
+       duplex auto
+       speed auto
+   3: interface Vlan300
+       description Corporate
+       ip address 10.10.10.2 255.255.255.0
+       no shutdown
+   4: ip route 0.0.0.0 0.0.0.0 192.168.0.2
+   5: line vty 0 4
+       transport input telnet ssh
+       transport output telnet ssh

The output above lists the lines of configuration that are missing from our device but that are present in our baseline template, shown by lines prefixed with a -. Lines that are present in our device that are not in our baseline template are prefixed with a +. Each block is numbered and listed in context with it's parent line. Currently this output doesn't signify whether the parent line is part of the difference or only there to provide context.

We can also audit a large number of devices against a single baseline. Below is an example script that checks every file within a given directory against a baseline and stores the differences in a CSV file.

import os
import csv

import diffios

IGNORE_FILE = os.path.join(os.getcwd(), "ignores.txt")
COMPARISON_DIR = os.path.join(os.getcwd(), "configs", "comparisons")
BASELINE_FILE = os.path.join(os.getcwd(), "configs", "baselines", "baseline.txt")

# the CSV file we will write to
output = os.path.join(os.getcwd(), "diffs.csv")

with open(output, 'w') as csvfile:
    csvwriter = csv.writer(csvfile, lineterminator='\n')
    # write the headers
    csvwriter.writerow(["Comparison", "Baseline", "Additional", "Missing"])
    files = sorted(os.listdir(COMPARISON_DIR))
    for f in files:
        comparison_file = os.path.join(COMPARISON_DIR, f)
        # initialise the diffios Compare object
        diff = diffios.Compare(BASELINE_FILE, comparison_file, IGNORE_FILE)
        csvwriter.writerow([
            f,
            os.path.basename(BASELINE_FILE),
            # write the formatted differences to the csv file
            diff.pprint_additional(),
            diff.pprint_missing()
        ])

The pretty print methods used above format the data in a more readable manner. We can compare the output from the additional() method and the pprint_additional() method.

The additional(), and missing(), methods return a list of lists that represent each block that contains a difference.

>>> from pprint import pprint
>>> pprint(diff.additional())
[['interface FastEthernet0/1', ' ip address 192.168.0.1 255.255.255.128'],
 ['interface FastEthernet0/2',
  ' ip address 192.168.0.2 255.255.255.0',
  ' duplex auto',
  ' speed auto'],
 ['interface Vlan300',
  ' description Corporate',
  ' ip address 10.10.10.2 255.255.255.0',
  ' no shutdown'],
 ['ip route 0.0.0.0 0.0.0.0 192.168.0.2'],
 ['line vty 0 4',
  ' transport input telnet ssh',
  ' transport output telnet ssh']]

Whereas the pprint_additional() and print_missing() methods return strings that represent all the differences, with each block separated by a newline.

>>> print(diff.pprint_additional())
interface FastEthernet0/1
 ip address 192.168.0.1 255.255.255.128

interface FastEthernet0/2
 ip address 192.168.0.2 255.255.255.0
 duplex auto
 speed auto

interface Vlan300
 description Corporate
 ip address 10.10.10.2 255.255.255.0
 no shutdown

ip route 0.0.0.0 0.0.0.0 192.168.0.2

line vty 0 4
 transport input telnet ssh
 transport output telnet ssh

Development setup

To run the test suite

git clone https://github.com/robphoenix/diffios
cd diffios
# Here you may want to set up a virtualenv
make init # this will install, via pip, test & documentation dependencies
make test # run pytest with configuration options in setup.cfg

Contributing

Please read CONTRIBUTING.md for details on the code of conduct, and the process for submitting pull requests.

Authors

License

This project is licensed under the MIT License - see the LICENSE file for details

Logo

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