This blog is the second in a series of two, focussing on DevNet Sandbox and the awesome free access to Cisco and Open Source tech it provides all our DevNet users.

In my Part 1 blog I explained how DevNet Sandbox provides great fast, on-demand access to a whole host of Cisco technology, third party solutions and developer tools – completely FREE – and how DevNet Sandbox provides super-fast hands on access to this tech, before you commit to them.  In this post, I’m going to go through some more of the details that will help you when working with Sandbox and advanced features you can leverage along the way.

So, let’s say you’ve signed up and you’ve taken a look at the Sandbox Catalog. You now want more information on what that sandbox provides and how you get started. Simply click on the center of the tile and we’ll open up the details view of that Sandbox.

On the left, we’ll give you information about the Sandbox. An overview of the sandbox itself, details about the tech that is in there, links to other goodies like documentation and associated DevNet Learning Labs and a topology of the sandbox that we’ll spin up for you.

We also provide details of the DevBox – a VM that you can SSH into, containing a bunch of great developer tools to help you out which we add to all the time:

Example software available:

  • Gnome Desktop
  • Docker Daemon and Engine
  • git tools
  • pyenv
  • Python 2.7
  • pip
  • virtualenv
  • drone command line tool
  • PyCharm Community
  • node version manager (nvm)
  • node v6.9.2 (LTS)

You’ll also get instructions around a simple ‘hello world’ example that you can play with to start to understand just what you can do with the Sandbox tech you have chosen and get that first win under your belt fast. There’s a good example here based on our CI/CD Sandbox.

When you’ve decided the sandbox has the right technology, functions, and environment you need, you can reserve it using the ‘reserve’ button in the top right corner, which brings up an embedded interactive reservation UI. You’ve got a few options at this point…

You can choose the length of time you want to reserve the sandbox for (up to a week as default). Click the pencil icon next to ‘schedule’ and then select the calendar icon or timings drop downs next to the ‘For (Duration)’ option.


Using the ‘Start From’ option, you can schedule the sandbox for some time in the future, too.

If you click the top right button on the reserve menu, you can also select from advanced options. Here, you can specify other permitted users that can use the Sandbox, too – so that you can team work in the same Sandbox! Handy.

Around this time, you’ll be good for reserving and eager to get straight into matters, no doubt. So, hit reserve!

From there, we take care of the rest and provide you email updates all along the way.

We’ll send you an email update detailing:

  • Confirmation of your reservation
  • Confirmation when active with VPN connection details, if prudent
  • Notification that the reservation will be ending, close to the end time
  • Notification that we’ve ended the reservation.

This way, you’re constantly informed of the status of the sandbox and the lifecycle we’re running.

Once you’ve completed the hello world, there’s absolutely nothing stopping you going totally free form and playing away – but you might be interested in learning in a more step-by-step approach and that’s why we also flag and link any related learning labs that could help you with the details of the Sandbox, too.

So, we’re hoping from information to instructions, step-by-step guides to hello world examples, developer tools to lifecycle management…we’ve got you covered. You just need to focus on learning and the next great thing you’re going to build using the tech you chose to run with!

Our goal at DevNet Sandbox is to make innovation easy and learning for developers, simple. We’ll keep striving to help you get the results you’re looking for and the solutions you want.

Go ahead and get stuck into something new!  And don’t hesitate to send me a comment or question on this blog. The DevNet Sandbox team is here to help you develop and innovate.

We’d love to hear what you think. Ask a question or leave a comment below.
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Tom Davies

Manager, DevNet Sandbox

Developer Experience