Network Programmability with Yang: The Structure of Network Automation with Yang, Netconf, Restconf, and Gnmi

Claise, Benoit, Clarke, Joe, Lindblad, Jan



Today, networks must evolve and scale faster than ever. You can't manage everything by hand anymore: You need to automate relentlessly. YANG, along with the NETCONF, RESTCONF, or gRPC/gNMI protocols, is the most practical solution, but most implementers have had to learn by trial and error. Now, Network Programmability with YANG gives you complete and reliable guidance for unlocking the full power of network automation using model-driven APIs and protocols.
Authored by three YANG pioneers, this plain-spoken book guides you through successfully applying software practices based on YANG data models. The authors focus on the network operations layer, emphasizing model-driven APIs, and underlying transports.
Whether you're a network operator, DevOps engineer, software developer, orchestration engineer, NMS/OSS architect, service engineer, or manager, this guide can help you dramatically improve value, agility, and manageability throughout your network.
  • Discover the value of implementing YANG and Data Model-Driven Management in your network
  • Explore the layers and components of a complete working solution
  • Build a business case where value increases as your solution grows
  • Drill down into transport protocols: NETCONF, RESTCONF, and gNMI/gRPC
  • See how telemetry can establish a valuable automated feedback loop
  • Find data models you can build on, and evaluate models with similar functionality
  • Understand models, metadata, and tools from several viewpoints: architect, operator, module author, and application developer
  • Walk through a complete automation journey: business case, service model, service implementation, device integration, and operation
  • Leverage the authors' experience to design successful YANG models and avoid pitfalls


Benoît Claise, CCIE No. 2686, is a Cisco Fellow, working as an architect for embedded management. Areas of passion and expertise include Internet traffic monitoring, accounting, performance, fault, and configuration management. Benoît's area of focus these days is network automation with YANG as the data modeling language, NETCONF/RESTCONF, and telemetry as a feedback loop to solve intent-based networking.

Benoît was IETF Operations and Management Area (OPS) co-director from 2012 to 2018, a period during which much of the data model-driven management protocols, encoding, and data models were specified. He blogs on these topics on his web site http: // and spends time on the developments. Benoît is a contributor to the IETF, with 35 RFCs in the area of NetFlow, IPFIX (IP Flow Information eXport), PSAMP (Packet Sampling), IPPM (IP Performance Metrics), YANG, MIB module, energy management, and network management in general. Benoît is the co-author of the Cisco Press book Network Management: Accounting and Performance Strategies.

As a Cisco Customer Experience Engineer, Joe Clarke, CCIE No. 5384, has contributed to the development and adoption of many of Cisco's network management and automation products and technologies. He helps to support, enhance, and promote the embedded automation and programmability features, such as the Embedded Event Manager, Tcl, Python, NETCONF/RESTCONF, and YANG.

Joe evangelizes these programmability and automation skills in order to build the next generation of network engineers. He is a Cisco Certified Internetworking Expert and certified Cisco Network Programmability Engineer. Joe has authored numerous technical documents on Cisco network management, automation, and programmability products and technologies, as well as a chapter as co-author of Network-Embedded Management and Applications: Understanding Programmable Networking Infrastructure. He also served as one of the technical editors for the Cisco Press books Tcl Scripting for Cisco IOS and Programming and Automating Cisco Networks: A Guide to Network Programmability and Automation in the Data Center, Campus, and WAN. He is an alumnus of the University of Miami and holds a Bachelor of Science degree in computer science.

Outside of Cisco, Joe is a member of the FreeBSD project and the co-chair of the Ops Area Working Group at the IETF. Joe is a certified commercial pilot for single-engine airplanes with an instrument rating. He lives with his beautiful wife in the RTP area of North Carolina.

Jan Lindblad soldered together his first computer at age 12, wrote his first compiler at 16, and reached the million lines of code mark by 30. In 2006, when NETCONF was first published by IETF, Jan was at the then newly founded start-up company Tail-f Systems. Tail-f built the first commercial implementation of NETCONF and was a driving force behind the introduction of YANG.

Jan is an IETF YANG Doctor and has also authored and reviewed many YANG modules in other organizations. Jan has trained several hundred people on the theory and practice of NETCONF and YANG. At the yearly NETCONF/YANG interop event organized by EANTC in Berlin, Germany, Jan plays a central role.

Outside Cisco, Jan is an avid climate activist and environmentalist. He lives outside Stockholm, Sweden, and commutes to work by bike every day.