Cisco NSO – Introduction
Cisco Network Services Orchestrator is a Linux application that orchestrates the configuration life cycle of physical and virtual network devices.
NSO gathers, parses, and stores the configuration state of the network devices it manages in a configuration database (CDB). Users and applications can then “ask” NSO to create, read, update, or delete configuration in a programmatic way either ad hoc or through customizable network services.
NSO uses software packages called Network Element Drivers (NEDs) to facilitate telnet, SSH, or API interactions with the devices that it manages. The NED provides an abstraction layer that reads in the device’s running configuration and parses it into a data-model-validated snapshot in the CDB.
The NEDs also allow for the reverse, creating network configuration from CDB data inputs and then sending the configurations to the network devices. There are hundreds of NEDs covering all the Cisco platforms (including IOS-XE, IOS-XR, NX-OS, and ASA) and all major non-Cisco platforms as well.