F5 Automation with Ansible Tips and Tricks

Getting Started with Ansible and F5

In this article we are going to provide you with a simple set of videos that demonstrate step by step how to implement automation with Ansible. In the last video, however we will demonstrate how telemetry and automation may be used in combination to address potential performance bottlenecks and ensure application availability.

To start, we will provide you with details on how to get started with Ansible automation using the Ansible Automation Platform®:

Backing up your F5 device

Once a user has installed and configured Ansible Automation Platform, we will now transition to a basic maintenance function – an automated backup of a BIG-IP hardware device or Virtual Edition (VE). This is always recommended before major changes are made to our BIG-IP devices

Configuring a Virtual Server

Next, we will use Ansible to configure a Virtual Server, a task that is most frequently performed via manual functions via the BIG-IP. When changes to a BIG-IP are infrequent, manual intervention may not be so cumbersome. However large enterprise customers may need to perform these tasks hundreds of times:

Replace an SSL Certificate

The next video will demonstrate how to use Ansible to replace an SSL certificate on a BIG-IP. It is important to note that this video will show the certificate being applied on a BIG-IP and then validated by browsing to the application website:

Configure and Deploy an iRule

The next administrative function will demonstrate how to configure and push an iRule using the Ansible Automation Platform® onto a BIG-IP device. Again this is a standard administrative task that can be simply automated via Ansible:

Delete the Existing Virtual Server

Ok so now we have to delete the above configuration to roll back to a steady state. This is a common administrative task when an application is retired. We again demonstrate how Ansible automation may be used to perform these simple administrative tasks:

Telemetry and Automation: Using Threshold Triggers to Automate Tasks and Fix Performance Bottlenecks

Now you have a clear demonstration as to how to utilize Ansible automation to perform routine tasks on a BIG-IP platform. Once you have become proficient with more routine Ansible tasks, we can explore more high-level, sophisticated automation tasks. In the below demonstration we show how BIG-IP administrators using SSL Orchestrator® (SSLO) can combine telemetry with automation to address performance bottlenecks in an application environment:


So that is a short series of tutorials on how to perform routine tasks using automation plus a preview of a more sophisticated use of automation based upon telemetry and automatic thresholds. For more detail on our partnership, please visit our F5/Ansible page or visit the Red Hat Automation Hub for information on the F5 Ansible certified collections.




Updated Apr 14, 2023
Version 2.0

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