Network Configuration Manager 7.7 Release Notes

Release date: September 13, 2017

These release notes describe the new features, improvements, and fixed issues in Network Configuration Manager 7.7. They also provide information about upgrades and describe workarounds for known issues.

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New features and improvements in NCM 7.7

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NCM 7.7 offers new features and improvements compared to previous releases of NCM.

Network Insight for Cisco Adaptive Security Appliances (ASA) firewalls

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.

NCM data in Performance Analysis (PerfStack™) dashboards

NCM data about configuration changes can now be included in PerfStack dashboards. Use PerfStack to determine when configuration changes occurred on a device. Then correlate this with other data to see what effect (either positive or negative) the configuration change had on the performance, availability, or response time of that device. PerfStack also shows who made the change, from what IP address, and what changed (a comparison with the previous configuration).

This version of PerfStack also includes:

  • Real-time polling at approximately one second intervals for specific metrics.
  • Metrics for Syslog, SNMP traps, UnDP, Network Insight for F5 and ASA, IPSLA Operations (VNQM), Configuration changes (NCM), and script monitors (SAM).
  • View the data behind supported charts with the Data Explorer.
  • Drag and drop entities to the chart area.
  • Open an analysis project directly from an entity with common metrics already added.
  • Go to the details page for an entity from the Performance Analysis dashboard.

>> Read more about PerfStack

Device template management and CLI settings moved to the Orion Platform

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

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

System requirements change

The SolarWinds NCM 7.7 server must have at least 6 GB of memory.

New features in Orion Platform 2017.3

For a list of new features and improvements in the Orion Platform 2017.3, see the Orion Platform 2017.3 release notes.


New customer installation

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For information about installing Network Configuration Manager, see the SolarWinds Orion Installer.

Before you upgrade!

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 NCM 7.5 or later or later, use the SolarWinds Orion Installer to upgrade one or more Orion Platform products simultaneously.

If you are upgrading from NCM 7.4 or earlier, use this topic to plan and implement an upgrade to the current version of NCM.


Fixed issues in NCM 7.7

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NCM 7.7 fixes the following issues.

Case number Description

1004704, 1067824

The Manage Policy Report Rules (under Compliance Report) are now listed in alphabetical order.

1127483, 1140532, 1155604

In emails sent by NCM, the sender's name is displayed correctly.

1106134

Single-line configuration changes can be uploaded to NCM.

1144329, 1148809

Sorting by the Entry ID column in the Firmware Vulnerabilities resource no longer results in an error.

1145970

Downloading configuration files for Cisco ASA devices works correctly.

1150088, 1148774, 168818, 1157679

Reports emailed in HTML format and viewed in Outlook 2016 no longer contain a large orange image in the header.

1167408

NCM cleans up all temp files that it creates.

1165056

The Config Change Report job can be run from an additional poller when the main and additional poller are installed in different locations.

1159818

White spaces in email settings no longer cause errors.

1161091

Downloading a configuration using the SNMP protocol and the Nightly Config Backup job works as expected.

1174747

When the Config Change Report is configured to compare downloaded configurations to the last baseline configurations, NPM no longer compares them to previously downloaded configurations.

1167656

When a firmware upgrade operation is performed, the Generate Script preview option no longer results in an error when the node uses User Level login credentials.

1186959

Full text search works as expected when there are more than 30 configuration files in the database.


Fixed issues in Orion Platform 2017.3

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For a list of new features and improvements in the Orion Platform 2017.3, see the Orion Platform 2017.3 release notes.


Known issues

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NPM installed with NCM
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/Work-around: Specify the device template in the Communication section.

 

No ACLs are listed for a Cisco ASA firewall
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/Work-around: 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.

End of life

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Version EoL Annoucement EoE Effective Date EoL Effective Date
7.5 September 14, 2017 End-of-Life (EoL) announcement - Customers on Network Configuration Manager version 7.5 should begin transitioning to the latest version of Network Configuration Manager. December 14, 2017 End-of-Engineering (EoE) - Service releases, bug fixes, workarounds, and service packs for Network Configuration Manager version 7.5 is no longer actively supported by SolarWinds. December 14, 2018 End-of-Life - SolarWinds will not longer provide technical support for Network Configuration Manager version 7.5.

See the End of Life Policy for information about SolarWinds product lifecycle phases. For supported versions and EoL announcements for all SolarWinds products, see Currently supported software versions.


End of support

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This version of Network Configuration Manager no longer supports the following platforms and features.

Type Details
Microsoft SQL Server SQL Server 2008 and 2008 R2 are no longer supported as your database server as of this release. SolarWinds recommends that you upgrade directly to SQL Server 2016 at your earliest convenience.
Microsoft Windows Server You cannot install SolarWinds Orion products on Windows Server 2008 R2 as of this release. SolarWinds recommends that you upgrade to Windows Server 2012, 2012 R2, or 2016 at your earliest convenience.
Export to PDF feature The Export to PDF button is no longer available. SolarWinds recommends that you use the Save as PDF functionality built into your browser.

Legal notices

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