NetBox Labs, is the open-source startup behind NetBox, a tool designed specifically for network engineers and operators. It combines the functionalities of IP Address Management (IPAM) and Data Center Infrastructure Management (DCIM) into a unified solution. With this relationship, Forward Enterprise and NetBox Cloud customers:

The relationship includes a joint effort to build a bi-directional integration between Forward Enterprise and NetBox. I’m thrilled to announce that the initial release of this integration has been published in this GitHub repository!!!

It enables customers to:

Onboard a NetBox instance

Onboarding a NetBox instance can be achieved by utilizing the data discovered and collected from the network through the Forward platform. This process involves running the provided Python script available in the mentioned GitHub repository.

Fig. 1: Python script execution steps

The scripts performs the following actions:

  1. Retrieves Forward Devices and Interfaces using Forward NQE REST APIs
  2. Gathers information such as Sites, Device Types, Device Roles, Interface type, etc. from NetBox via REST APIs
  3. Translates the data from Forward into the NetBox schema
  4. Pushes Devices and Interfaces to NetBox via NetBox REST APIs

Here are two screenshots that display devices and interfaces imported into NetBox by the script:

Fig. 2: Devices imported to NetBox

Fig. 3: Interfaces imported to NetBox

Import device data from NetBox

This integration is designed for users who would like to import data stored in NetBox into Forward, either to display them in the Forward application or to create verification and compliance checks.

This integration did not require any development! It relies on features like External Sources import, NQE Queries, NQE Verifications, and NQE Decorators, which are available to all Forward customers. With Forward External Sources, customers can import data from any HTTP-based external application each time it collects information from the network infrastructure. Forward automatically infers the data schema from the imported data and stores it in NQE. Once in NQE, it can be used like any other data collected from the network.

The following screenshot shows a device card displaying data imported from NetBox:

Fig. 4: NetBox decorator

What’s next?

This is just the beginning of the collaboration between Forward Networks and NetBox Labs. Stay tuned for more exciting updates!

Meanwhile, check out the GitHub repository and feel free to provide any feedback or, better yet, contribute with any enhancement!! Reach out to Forward Networks or NetBox Labs for more information. This marks just the beginning of the collaboration between Forward Networks and NetBox Labs. Stay tuned for more exciting updates!

Trying to convince SecOps teams they need more data is like trying to convince a drowning person they need more water. SecOps teams are so overwhelmed they can’t even respond to 67% of the alerts they receive. On average, SecOps teams receive 4,484 alerts per day and spend over three hours per day manually triaging the alerts, costing $3.3 billion annually in the US alone. (Source: Vectra 2023 State of Threat Detection)

The problem is that the high-volume of data they are receiving lacks context. When you receive over 20,000 CVE announcements and over 1.5 million alerts, you do not need more data; what you need is actionable, timely data that provides context and a path for remediation.

Forward Enterprise is integrated with the NIST database and endpoint scanning solutions, Rapid7 and Tenable. This integration provides security teams a prioritized remediation report of the vulnerabilities that exist in their network ranked by exposure.

Join our co-founder, Nikhil Handigol on Thursday, August 24th at 2:00 p.m. EDT/11:00 a.m. PDT to see this in action.

During a live technical session, Nikhil will demonstrate our Tenable integration and highlight how the solution delivers complete attack surface visibility, empowering SecOps to proactively identify impacted hosts with critical vulnerabilities accessible from the Internet or other critical exposure points in seconds.

You’ll see how the integration with Tenable delivers an actionable exposed host report that incudes:

Most importantly, Nikhil will demonstrate how a mathematical model of the network helps make the plethora of network vulnerability data actionable.

Register for your seat now. [If you miss the live session, it will be immediately available on-demand via that same link.]

Security teams rely on vulnerability scanners to proactively locate vulnerabilities in network
devices, hosts, and applications. These tools help improve the overall security posture of the
network by remediating exposure before bad actors have an opportunity to exploit it.
Although incredibly helpful, the data delivered by these tools is often overwhelming and not
presented in an actionable manner.

Forward Exposure Analysis helps security teams prioritize vulnerability remediation by combining the host vulnerability data provided by vulnerability scanners like Rapid7 InsightVM or Tenable Security Center with Forward Networks' modeling capabilities. By integrating with these popular tools, Forward Networks empowers security teams to identify in seconds any impacted hosts with critical vulnerabilities that can be accessed from the Internet or any other critical exposure point.

The Forward Enterprise platform helps make sense of the extensive data provided by vulnerability scanners by categorizing the data into three segments: Exposure Points, Overview, and Vulnerability Report. The Exposure Points default to the internet, but users can add additional exposure points like VPN connections. The Overview provides a high-level analysis that makes it easy to identify the number of vulnerable hosts and whether those hosts are modeled by Forward Enterprise. The Vulnerability report is perhaps the most valuable, detailing every vulnerable host that is exposed. Exposed host reporting includes:

To see the Exposure Analysis feature in action please watch a short video:

Network automation has many benefits for organizations adopting a DevOps model for managing their infrastructure, including speed, agility, and a consistent change control process. However, with improvements in speed, there comes an added risk of configuration errors rapidly propagating through the network. 

To safeguard against potential mistakes, network and security verification become an essential part of the network DevOps lifecycle. By integrating Arista CloudVision® with Forward Enterprise, network operators can leverage the monitoring, change control, and configuration management of CloudVision, while using Forward Enterprise to execute pre-change and post-change network and security verifications.

Key Benefits of Integration

Figure 1: CloudVision and Forward Integrated Workflow

With this CloudVision and Forward Enterprise integration, users get a turn-key network verification platform that fits into any operational workflow. Operators can prevent mistakes from spreading through the entire network by using CloudVision to:

After the change is complete, send another API call to Forward Enterprise, triggering another network snapshot and creating a comprehensive report of the differences in the network between the pre-change and post-change. The Forward report includes configuration and state information, policy rules, behavior checks, device connections, interface, and paths. Additionally, it will run automated Network Query Engine queries and validation tests.

Figure 2: Forward Enterprise pre- and post-change report

Forward Enterprise is key to continuously ensuring that the network is compliant with security and availability policies. Interested in exploring the benefits of Forward Enterprise for your specific network needs? Request a demo here.

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