Exercising the Mind Versus Best Practice

Last week I wrote and article that outlined a method to resolve a formatting nuance when opening an IOS configuration file in Notepad. Like many articles I have written, I know there are more than one way to “skin the cat”. One reader mentioned the fact that the file could simple be opened in Wordpad and the formatting would be correct. That is a great tip and prompted me to want to clarify one of the reasons I write these articles.

There are actually several reasons for writing the various articles on PacketU. These reasons include documenting items I have struggled with for future reference, providing learning opportunities for others, sharing knowledge and experiences, and occasionally providing a complete configuration example. Some articles are quick tips, while others are more elaborate.

The tip I provided for the Notepad formatting issue was an example of an article that may help someone in a corner case scenario at some point in time. In other articles, some of the complex ASA configuration examples are provided to allow people to understand how an ASA behaves and processes packets or flows. I personally prefer a simple configuration and find that simplicity results in better reliability, but understand we occasionally have to implement complex configurations. I guess the point I want to make is that when learning, labbing and practicing, we don’t always implement best practices. While best practice certainly helps in understanding design principals, it doesn’t always lead to deep understanding of how a single device functions.

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About Paul Stewart, CCIE 26009 (Security)

Paul is a Network and Security Engineer, Trainer and Blogger who enjoys understanding how things really work. With over 15 years of experience in the technology industry, Paul has helped many organizations build, maintain and secure their networks and systems.
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