Network Engineers: Time to Give Up Your Blankies

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Remember Linus from the Peanuts cartoon? He was the one who dragged around his blanket wherever he went, as a comfort measure. The same goes for Calvin with Hobbes, the “Good Doctor” Shaun Murphy and his scalpel, and the Fonz with his leather jacket. For many network engineers, command line interface (CLI) serves as their blankie equivalent. I understand that many engineers have grown their careers hunting and pecking on a CLI, but these days doing so is more of a liability than an asset.

I got to thinking about this the other day while attending VMware’s annual user conference, VMworld 2019, in San Francisco. Although VMware is best known as a compute virtualization vendor, it has made significant strides in networking and has been one of the most aggressive vendors on network transformation. It’s particularly strong in the area of software-defined WAN (SD-WAN), its VeloCloud product (which it acquired in late 2017) being one of the industry’s leading solutions.

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