Identity and Access Management (IAM)

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ISAM automation: Is using Powershell a good idea?

  • 1.  ISAM automation: Is using Powershell a good idea?

    Posted Mon February 11, 2019 11:48 AM
    Hi community,

    Since we have decided to move forward with ISAM after the successful PoCs, we are currently working out the next steps.

    One of these steps includes the automation of ISAM tasks as much as possible (not to say: completely) right from the start. It seems that different resources exist already to help us in that, e.g. : 
    https://github.com/IBM-Security/isam-ansible-roles
    https://github.com/Dramz0r/ISAM-PowerShell

    It seems that Python is the preferred IBM way of doing things, since their repo contains a lot of Python examples. However, we were wondering if other companies use different scripting languages for their ISAM automation (and we specifically are interested in Powershell experience). We would like to avoid choosing a scripting language which impedes our agility. 

    Any experience in the community with Powershell as the automation scripting language for ISAM?


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    Michael
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  • 2.  RE: ISAM automation: Is using Powershell a good idea?

    Posted Mon February 11, 2019 03:45 PM
    Hi Michael,

    I have no experience in powershell, but I used to automate a lot in bash back in the day.
    Shellscripting is usefull for small scripts/projects. However, you tend to hit the limitations in bigger projects.

    Most of the time that point comes after quite some lines of code, where starting over in a "real scripting" language like (for example) python seems no longer an option...

    For me, it always started out with relative easy things that are perfectly doable in a shell, but when the project evolves, the more complex functionality tends to take more time to accomplish in shell code than it is in a language where a lot of libraries are available.

    I would definitely recommand python over  shellscripting

    Kind regards

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    Kristof Goossens
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  • 3.  RE: ISAM automation: Is using Powershell a good idea?

    Posted Tue February 12, 2019 02:48 AM

    Morning Michael, 


    Well I never thought I would see my little PowerShell project on this forum, the ISAM-PowerShell module is my 'little baby' as it were.
    It hasn't had many updates over the past year due to being brought off our ISAM project and working on something different, but still actively adding functionality to our in-house version.

    As you may well have noticed, those modules are no where near complete - it was just a place I was able to store my scripts until I released them upon the wide world, in-fact in our Organisation, we use this module on a daily basis.

    For instance, we utilize this module to update the configuration of our Reverse Proxies - with a little scripting around the modules cmdlets you can use this to keep configuration consistent within different ISAM environments, as well as many other things. 

    The module, as you may well have already seen, utilizes the REST WebServices that ISAM provides, there is a reem of functionality here that can be added to the module.

    If there is something specific that you are looking to do, please let me know and I can add the relevant functionality to the module.

    As for Kristof's message, I guess your choice of scripting language is based on your experience in the field. When working with TAM 6.1 we utilized windows batch jobs to automate any of our tasks, since we were running on server 2003, so PowerShell seemed the like the logical next iteration. 


    Kind regards, 

    Dave Hall



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    David Hall
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  • 4.  RE: ISAM automation: Is using Powershell a good idea?

    Posted Tue February 12, 2019 04:13 AM
    Hi Michael,

    I have experience with both Powershell and python scripting for ISAM, and I would really say that looking at the ISAM ansible role set, that you may be able to achieve quick results using a portable version of python 2.7

    Of course, you can achieve exactly the same with PowerShell, but I would expect that you need to do more scripting work to build the set of capabilities which are already there for isam-ansible-roles.

    Kind regards,

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    Abdel Hamrioui
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  • 5.  RE: ISAM automation: Is using Powershell a good idea?

    Posted Fri February 15, 2019 05:43 PM
    Also one of the key advantages of using the IBM ansible project on github is the fact that both ansible and the python framework are idempotent.  The idempotency and check mode functionality allows you the confidence to know that the system will be in the desired state it needs to be in no matter how many times you run the same commands.

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    Raman puggal
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