Q&A: Fast Application Deployment with Ansible and F5 BIG-IP

The following post contains answers to questions asked during our webinar about Fast Application Deployment with Ansible and F5 Big-IP
.

Q: How can we define BIG-IP in one sentence? What is its significance in DevOps?

F5 BIG-IP is an API-enabled application delivery platform supporting a full seven layers of traffic and security services. It’s not a tool that will make DevOps easier per-se, but the BIG-IP has (historically) been difficult to administer in an automated way. These Ansible modules are intended to make it less difficult so that you can drive your BIG-IP devices via code (Ansible) instead of by having to manually configure it via the Web UI.

Q: Is there documentation that details all the F5 modules being presented in the webinar?

The documentation is in two places:

  1. The official list of F5 modules can be found in Ansible docs.
  2. The upstream/community developer docs are on the F5
    readthedocs page
    or you can find many technical resources at
    F5 devcentral
    . The latest virtual appliance that you will find are the 13.x branch of BIG-IP module.

There will be documentation on these modules once the modules are released with Ansible version 2.4. For sample Playbooks on onboarding and networking, please refer to the following article
.

Q: Is BIG-IP the same as IBM DataPower?

DataPower is a message queue/gateway (primarily XML if I recall correctly) that is niche use case where BIG-IP is a general purpose load balancer with advanced services like access, ssl offload/inspect, security at layers 2-7, etc.

Q: Is there a place where the community can chat about Ansible and F5 networking topics? Slack? IRC?

If you have any questions or would like status on your GitHub pull requests, please refer to the weekly Wednesday online IRC meeting
with the Ansible Networking Team. You can also join the more general #ansible IRC channel on freenode. On the F5 side, there is a slack channel at f5-common-python.slack.com.

Q: Is f5-common-python different than f5-sdk ansible?

No, it’s just the historical name for it.

Q: When will Ansible 2.4 will be released, which includes all f5-sdk modules?

August/September timeframe at the moment, but obviously it is subject to change depending on testing, etc. That’s the plan! As for which F5 modules will be included, that is still in process.

Q: I am more interested in f5-sdk for cert upload and build SSL profile. Will those functions be released in Sept/Oct time frame?

That functionality is available in the f5-sdk today. There is also a bigip_ssl_certificate that handles most of the cert upload part.

Q: Love the bigip_monitor_http. Any plans to support https monitors?

I believe that other monitors, like https, will come with time. I don’t believe this module is on our list right now though, so please open an issue here.

Q: For F5 iAPPs, is there a quick, non-impactful way to migrate existing virtual server, pool, irules, etc. configurations to an iapp?

I don’t believe this module is on our list right now, so please open an issue here
.

Q: Where can I learn to Get Started and ask other F5 questions?

Visit https://devcentral.F5.com/
or email DevopsBD@F5.com
.

Need More?

Learn how Ansible’s simple agentless framework can help you build, manage and scale network automation.

Read aboutthe solution benefits of the Ansible and F5 integration.

Keep an eye on the Ask Ansible page for upcoming sessions.

If you have any comments or ideas for other Ask an Expert sessions, feel free to tweet at.

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