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    Over the years, I’ve worked with SNMP a lot, from implementing it to creating interfaces on devices to allow them to be managed by it, to creating management systems that use it to manage devices.

    The “S” is…not accurate.

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      The “Management” part is overstated as well. There are relatively few devices that can be adequately managed via SNMP: typical implementations allow mostly for monitoring.

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        The fact SNMP wasn’t really good at the whole management part in practice was why NETCONF became a thing.

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          Too bad that like a true 00s kid, it’s traumatized with XML!

          (but I see there’s a JSON option now)

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      SNMP makes extensive use of long, incomprehensible numbers. That is, of course, basically a description of all of computing, but SNMP exposes them to users in a way that modern software generally tries to avoid.

      The MIB structure will be familiar to *BSD users, because sysctls work in exactly the same way: each one is a path of numbers with a convenient name-to-number mapping that you can query. Apparently some special people even expose some bits of the sysctl hierarchy over SNMP.

      SNMP shows up in some surprising places. I don’t know if it’s true for later ones, but Apple’s original AirPort base station supported only SNMP for administration. On a Mac, there was a pretty GUI bundled with the OS, but there was no web interface or anything for other systems. The SNMP interface was documented (or possible reverse engineered) and so there were third-party tools that would talk SNMP to the device and let you administer it from other systems. It was quite surprising to me to find a consumer device from a very consumer-facing company supporting this kind of enterprise-style feature. I guess it saved money to ship a CPU that wasn’t powerful enough to run a web server. In most other ways it was an awful device: any update to the configuration (e.g. adding a port-forwarding rule) required a complete reboot, which lost all NAT state and took tens of seconds.

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        IIRC, the OG AirPort are rebadged Lucent RG-1000s.

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        SNMP and OSI, but we’re not going to talk about CMIP and CIMOM? Perhaps for the best…

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          The last time I heard of CMIP was back in 1995 when I was sitting for an undergraduate exam on networks.

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          Blast from the past! I wrote a couple of SNMP posts (1, 2) back in 2015/6 when I was a Network Engineer that I’d forgotten about until now, and only found them again thanks to the Wayback machine

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            Make it as simple as possible, but not any simpler. SNMP: I’ll make it simpler.

            The protocol is so “simple” (for some value of simple) that it’s actually not simple to use.