Saturday, August 29, 2009

Map a UC appliance as a network drive

Remember the "good old days" of CCM 4.x? You can do almost everything on the box. Because it's in fact a Windows 2000 box. However, this brings security and supportability issues.

With the introduction of Linux-based Unified Communication appliance (CUCM 5.x), Cisco locked down the box. You can only access the box via admin web page or a tailored command line.

One of the inconveniences is to review log files. On the old-school CCM 4.x, you may just view the logs in C:\Program Files\Cisco\Trace. On the new UC appliance, you'll have to use RTMT (RealTime Monitoring Tool). This is especially annoying if you're testing your system. For each test, you'll have to download a new set of logs to your computer. (though you may use 'Remote Browse' in RTMT, its function is very limited)

What if we can go back to the "good old days" and view the file system just like a Windows drive?

Take a look at the screenshot below. It's a CUCM 6.1.4 mapped to my Windows XP laptop. You can read/write files on CUCM just like a local hard drive. For those people who are not a fan of VI, you may use your favorite editor (such as Notepad++/UltraEdit). And you may use any Windows tools, such as Windows search, WinGrep, WinZip, etc. How's that? :)

To achieve this, you need two things: a root account on CUCM and a software who can map a SFTP server to a network drive (such as sFTPdrive).