[QUESTION] has anyone done any admin scripting using ansible?


Occasional Visitor
Has anyone created script(s)/playbook(s) to use ansible to admin an asus-merlin firmware on gt-ax11000/rt-ax88u level systems ?

I see a python package on entware. Has anyone installed it and if so how much disk/ram space does it require ?

Once I have collated any relevant answers I will look at using/merging my standard ansible scripts/playbooks for setup/admin.

Thanks in advance



Part of the Furniture
Pretty sure I've never heard of this in these forums before.

Tom D

New Around Here
It's been a while since the original post, but I stumbled across this today as I was also wondering if anyone has experience with this. I think Ansible is a good

I have set up Ansible for an RT-N66U running legacy Merlin 380.70-0 a while. The setup was quite straightforward: I already had entware on the system, and I just needed to install a number of packages to get it to work. I found a rather small set of packages that is needed to make things run, and a newer router should have even less problems to run it - see below for more info.

The reason why I was looking for ASUSWRT-Merlin and Ansible is that I Ansible now supports networking devices that do not run Python by running CLI commands through ssh. The ASUSWRT `nvram` command would be a good candidate, and a lot of basic settings could be automated without the need for entware, Python, and maybe even with the stock ASUSWRT firmware. I am thinking about setting this up, and wanted to see if there is experience and/or interest in using Ansible for ASUSWRT and small networks. I think it's a natural choice, and I like having my router configuration in a git repository alongside all other computer setup I have - although I do wonder if it's overkill...

Some details of the implementation:

I had to install these opkg packages: python-light python-logging python-openssl python-codecs openssh-sftp-server python-distutils. I even wrote a small playbook to set this up, but that this playbook does not set up of entware on the system. I don't remember why I installed python-distutils in a second call to opkg, it might work in a single call.
- name: bootstrap WRT routers
  hosts: asuswrt
  gather_facts: False


    - name: update entware package information
      raw: opkg update

    - name: install python for ansible
      raw: >
        opkg install
        python-light python-logging python-openssl python-codecs

    - name: install python modules for ansible
        name: python-distutils
        state: present
        update_cache: yes

An important feature is to use the `nvram` command to change all the router settings, as an alternative to the web interface. I wrote a little shell script to help with this, and this makes it quite convenient to update e.g. DNS servers. I put this script in library/asuswrt_nvram.sh, and I'm not sure if anything else is needed.
# wrapper for conditional setting of uci config
# compare http://wiki.openwrt.org/doc/techref/uci

# TODO: add more docs, see http://docs.ansible.com/developing_modules.html

# parameters are command, key, value
source ${1}

unquoted_key="$(echo $key | sed -e s/\'//g)"
unquoted_value="$(echo $value | sed -e s/\'//g)"

# test if we need to apply a change
case $command in
        if [ "$(nvram get "$unquoted_key")" = "$value" ]
            echo '{"changed": false}'
            if [ -z "${_ansible_check_mode}" -o "${_ansible_check_mode}" = "False" ]
                nvram set "${unquoted_key}=${value}"
                logger "read nvram: ${unquoted_key}="$(nvram get "${unquoted_key}")
            echo '{"changed": true, "msg": "executed: nvram set"}'
            #echo "{\"changed\": true, \"msg\": \"executed nvram set \"${unquoted_key}=${value}\"}"

        #if [ -z "${_ansible_check_mode}" -o "${_ansible_check_mode}" = "False" ]
        nvram commit
        logger "commit nvram"
        echo '{"changed": true, "msg": "executed: nvram commit"}'

However, a cleaner way would be to use Ansible network automation for this. You can reply to this thread if you are interested in more info.

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