Sunday, November 27, 2022
HomeCloud ComputingCloud Networking Assets from Cisco Developer Relations – A Deep Dive

Cloud Networking Assets from Cisco Developer Relations – A Deep Dive


This weblog is a collaboration between lead writer Quinn SnyderDeveloper Advocate, Cisco DevRel and Ravi Balakrishnan, Senior Advertising Supervisor.


Inside the Developer Relations ecosystem, lots of focus (each by way of creation, in addition to dialogue with others) is on the content material that permits folks to discover and develop their expertise. Naturally, this tilts outreach (and blogs like these) in the direction of our wonderful sandboxes and thorough studying labs. Additionally it is utterly comprehensible why we might bias ourselves in the direction of these modalities; we’re technical folks, and we like to be taught and train folks by way of hands-on exploration, whether or not its guided or self-paced. “See it, be taught it, code it” has served the neighborhood very nicely and it’s one thing we’re pleased with.

Nevertheless, we wish to write this weblog rounding out the entire portfolio of labor that helps our infrastructure builders and automation engineers, when the sandboxes and studying labs don’t present all of the solutions to the questions they’ve.

The Developer Facilities

The Developer Facilities (or DevCenters) for brief serve a single supply touchdown web page for all issues programmability associated to a product or software. From updates to product APIs, bulletins from the enterprise entity supporting that product, webinars and how-to, and documentation pages – every part wanted by an infrastructure developer will be discovered right here.

As a part of our dedication to developer expertise, these Decenter are stored updated with any newest info or modifications to the APIs to make sure that everybody has entry to the related content material they want, after they want it. Now we have DevCenters for knowledge middle applied sciences, similar to ACI, NX-OS, Nexus Dashboard.  We even have particular DevCenters for Infrastructure as Code, together with one particularly for cloud networking, in addition to for every IaC software supported throughout the DevNet ecosystem, Ansible and Terraform.  There’s a ton of knowledge that may be gleaned simply from these sources – however that is just the start.

API Documentation

Now we have touched on this in earlier weblog posts, however nonetheless wish to dive a bit deeper into how we’re bettering our API documentation, offering for a greater developer expertise. Each API-enabled product (and the cloud networking product traces aren’t any exception) has an API documentation microsite. This microsite (an instance for ACI is proven beneath) incorporates not solely the API information, however background and context concerning the APIs and their design rules, mannequin references (the place acceptable), and hyperlinks to exterior pages, similar to IaC modules/suppliers, sandboxes that can be utilized to discover the APIs, studying labs, and developer neighborhood help boards for questions which will come up throughout API exploration.  These documentation pages additionally help a number of variations of the API – which means that whatever the model you’re operating – you could find an API reference for it on our portal.

Whereas these pages might not be as visually “flashy” as our DevCenters, they comprise a wealth of knowledge and supply a lot of exterior hyperlinks to different helpful instruments. A few of our hottest documentation pages embrace:

However proceed to examine again, particularly as new services or products are launched. If it exists – you will be certain we now have API documentation for it!

The CiscoDevNet GitHub Group

Whereas not immediately hosted on our personal web site, lots of our hyperlinks (particularly to sources for Ansible and Terraform) redirect to our Github group for that particular repository. As a result of we wish to observe the rules that we train to our clients and companions, our GitHub group is the only supply for all code samples, third celebration IaC sources, and pattern initiatives inside DevRel. These public-facing repositories will be forked to your personal group, modified, or improved upon, and submitted for merge into the principle upstream department by way of a pull request (PR). To prime it off, it’s not solely DevRel advocates and engineers inside these repositories, however members of the technical gross sales, engineering, and product administration groups – enabling you to have unfettered entry to the groups which are growing automation and programmability options.

The opposite added benefit of utilizing our GitHub group is that it permits us to make use of the “Points” web page as a reference for the changelog of our infrastructure as code sources. Whereas TAC does help the sources, it’s attainable to interact with our builders to work by way of enhancements or bugs inside Ansible modules or Terraform suppliers with out opening a direct service request with TAC. These points will likely be aggregated, mounted, and talked about as a part of a given launch of the useful resource and the barrier to opening a difficulty is extremely low – showcasing how utilizing a VCS like GitHub can show invaluable to a developer’s workflow.

Our present checklist of IaC sources on GitHub are:

However once more – preserve checking – as we’re consistently including particular actions to these sources, in addition to including new sources on a regular basis!

Code Trade and Automation Trade

One ultimate (and sometimes ignored) part throughout the DevNet web site is the Code Trade and Automation Trade platforms. Every of those platforms help you seek for curated content material related to your wants and use-case, every with a distinct bent: Code Trade (CE) focuses on easy code samples that can be utilized as a place to begin for creating a bigger answer, whereas Automation Trade (AE) focuses on driving a single use-case by way of to its automated completion.  Each CE and AE assist builders, each novice and skilled alike, get began on a mission by utilizing different prior work as a supply of inspiration or a constructing block for additional duties. I do know that I’ve been impressed on a number of events to create one thing utilizing another person’s work as a place to begin (with correct attribution to the unique developer, in fact). You’ll find Code Trade and Automation Trade by clicking on the embedded hyperlinks of their names.

Placing It All Collectively

From the checklist above, you possibly can see that there’s greater than the spectacular studying and sandbox content material that we create inside DevRel. All the pieces that we do is supposed to drive up the developer expertise, decrease the mean-time-to-API-call (MTTAC, one thing I simply made up), and make sure that our cloud networking infrastructure builders are supported at each step of their journey and in each approach attainable.

We’d love to listen to about your experiences utilizing any of the DevRel sources, not simply those listed above. Good, dangerous, detached, or in any other case – we’re right here for all of it. You’ll find Quinn on Twitter @qsnyder or on LinkedIn and we’d like to have a dialog about what’s working for you, what isn’t, or how we will enhance to drive the very best developer expertise attainable.

 

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