NetBox 4.0

Announcing NetBox 4.0

As the commercial stewards of NetBox, NetBox Labs is committed to investing in continuous innovation and updates to open-source NetBox. Today, NetBox Labs is excited to announce the general availability of NetBox 4.0. There are several categories of improvements that the NetBox team and community have made as a part of this major release. In this post, we’ll discuss the major feature enhancements and updates that are now GA as a part of 4.0, and how those updates address common community feedback and requests.

NetBox 4.0 Overview

Based on community feedback aggregated over the past year, the updates in NetBox 4.0 seek to improve the NetBox user experience for network teams documenting their infrastructure, network automation practitioners, and IT leaders. The 4.0 feature improvements fall across several categories including:

  • Front-end changes (targeted and product-wide)
  • The NetBox data model
  • API and developer experiences and
  • Plugin management and assurance 

NetBox 4.0 is available now, and here’s what you can expect in each category of improvement.   

Front end improvements

We’ve elevated the NetBox UI with a modern, consistent user experience that helps your team be their most effective regardless of which screens they’re using. In 4.0, users will experience a more consistent look and feel to NetBox, while also making its front-end automatically responsive to different screen configurations. 


Targeted front-end improvements

Targeted front-end improvements have been made so that network operations teams benefit from smarter workflows when searching for data. Critical information is now quicker to find and it is more readable, saving both time and effort. The targeted front-end improvements introduced as a part of NetBox 4.0 include:

Improved the experience of finding and displaying information in the NetBox UI

By making smarter use of screen real estate between list and detail views, and enabling search terms to target specific columns, we’ve made the vital information in your NetBox instances quicker to find and more readable. 

Simplified the experience of creating and modifying objects in the NetBox UI by adding helpful context

Based on community feedback, we’ve improved data entry in NetBox by adding high-value context to object selection controls, and made those controls aware of the underlying data hierarchy, eliminating a common source of entry errors.

NetBox 4.0 improvements

NetBox data model improvements 

The data model in NetBox 4.0 has evolved to reflect the reality of your organization more accurately than ever. Here are just a few of the improvements made as a part of 4.0:

Improved NetBox locations to reflect their frequent association with a Facility

It’s now possible to denote which facility a NetBox location belongs to, delivering this concept at a finer-grained level than the site object provides. Locations in NetBox will now show an optional Facility field, making Facility a reusable field and saving a Site lookup.

Made handling of nested object types more consistent

The representation of nested object types in API responses is now more consistent, enabling better code reuse in your automation assets.

Made custom scripts first-class model objects, addressable via the API

Custom scripts in NetBox are now model objects with API representation, meaning you can manipulate them without making a special trip to the front end UI. 

API and developer experience improvements

Over the past year we’ve invested in our APIs and developer experience so that network automation teams can get more done with less code. With the release of 4.0, users can expect the following improvements:

Made API queries more powerful and flexible, saving lines of code and improving performance

We’ve made improvements behind the scenes that deliver faster front-end performance. API queries can now specify a set of desired results fields, saving repetitive calls in your automation code. 

Made the GraphQL API more consistent and predictable

We overhauled the GraphQL API to provide more consistent results with fewer quirks and a smoother experience going forward. 

Plugin experience

We’ve integrated the plugin catalog, saving your staff time and helping them keep certified plugins updated. For the full background on certified plugins, check out our recent blog post.

Made it easier to keep your NetBox plugins up to date

With 4.0, and the recently announced NetBox Labs Certified Plugins program, it has become much easier to know at a glance which plugins installed in your NetBox instance are certified, and which of those have updates available. 

Coming soon to NetBox Cloud and NetBox Enterprise

When can NetBox Cloud and NetBox Enterprise customers expect to see the 4.0 changes? The team is hard at work putting the NetBox 4.0 release through its paces, and we expect to announce its availability for all NetBox Cloud customers later this month, and for NetBox Enterprise customers soon after.

Summary

From the entire NetBox Labs team, thank you to all of those in the community who helped make these updates possible. Your feedback and insight are the primary sources of input that drive NetBox’s continued innovation and development. Please keep the feedback, insights, and conversations going within our Slack and GitHub communities.

Have a cool NetBox story to tell? Let’s chat about featuring it in a community meetup or on the NetBox Heroes podcast.

Going to AutoCon 1 or Cisco Live US and hoping to talk about NetBox with us directly? Set up time to meet with us at the links below:

Setup a meeting with us at AutoCon, and stop by booth 15.

Setup a meeting with us at Cisco Live, and meet with us at booth 5419.

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