This demo shows how you can easily backup your entire Alcatel-Lucent Enterprise Omniswitch environment using Ansible. You can store the backup files locally or even better, push them to a remote GIT repository. The result is a CMDB (configuration management database) in which the different backup versions are stored and where you can easily compare them to track changes.

Switch configuration stored into a GIT repository
Switch configuration stored into a GIT repository

For AOS6 devices we use Gilbert Moisio’s “ale_aos” Ansible collection to save the CLI output captured from the “show configuration snapshot” command through SSH. For AOS8 devices we can utilize the REST API to send the necessary GET requests via the Ansible built-in “uri” module.

What is Ansible: Ansible is an open-source orchestration tool for automating application deployment and configuration management, enabling infrastructure as a code.

You can find all the demo files in the ansible-aos-demo GitHub repository. Clone the remote repository to a local folder to get started:

git clone

Installation: Python modules, Ansible collections

Before we get started we need to install some Python modules and the desired Ansible collections. For example, the ale_aos Ansible collection makes underlying use of the Python package Netmiko. We install from two files in which we track dependencies: requirements.txt and requirements.yml.

  - name: gmoisio.ale
  - name: lvrfrc87.git_acp
    version: "1.1.3"
  - name: community.general
  1. Install Python requirements
pip3 install -r requirements.txt

2.Install Ansible-galaxy collections

ansible-galaxy collection install -r requirements.yml

Test the Ansible and the Ansible-galaxy collections installation by running the following terminal commands:

ansible --version
ansible-galaxy collection list

Example output "ansible --version":

jefvantongerloo:$ ansible --version
ansible 2.10.16
  config file = None
  configured module search path = ['/home/p064033/.ansible/plugins/modules', '/usr/share/ansible/plugins/modules']
  ansible python module location = /home/p064033/.local/lib/python3.8/site-packages/ansible
  executable location = /home/p064033/.local/bin/ansible

Host and variable configuration

Add all desired hosts to the inventory.yml file and specify the correct device_os of the device, respectively aos6 and aos8. Through this parameter, we will later determine whether to use SSH (slow) or REST API (fast) to interact with the device.

      device_vendor: alcatel
      device_os: aos8

In our Ansible playbook we use the variable “ale_username” and “ale_password” to login to the switches. By adding this as a group variable in the file “group_vars / all / all.yml” they are available for the group “all”, i.e. all hosts.

ale_username: admin
ale_password: switch

The Ansible backup playbook can store the backup configuration locally or on a remote git repository. By altering the “backup_git” variable with “true” or “false” you can activate this functionality. If you are pushing backups to git, also complete the set of git parameters to allow Ansible accessing your GIT repository.

backup_local: true
backup_git: false
git_token: ""
git_username: ""
git_url: ""
git_branch: "master"

Execute Ansible playbook backup.yml

Final step is to run the backup-all.yml ansible playbook:

ansible-playbook backup-all.yml

All playbook tasks from the backup-all.yml file are now executed sequentially. Taking into account our “device_os” parameter, only relevant tasks for the host are performed. If everything goes well, the counter of failed tasks will remain at zero.

If the local backup option is activated, a folder structure has been created in the “backups” folder containing the configuration files.


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