I see there are a couple of Expect scripts on the PA support site. 1 of them can be used to automate config changes. However, the doc does not explain how to use them. Do the scripts run on a host PC or on the PAN device? How specifically do I get them to run?
Such scripts would be run from a trusted PC used to remotely manage the PA device. A read-write administrator account would be created for their use.
It's not a good idea to venture into such things unless you are very comfortable with shell scripting and Perl, and the management PC is very, very secure.
I would recommend that if you dabble with automating things, begin with read-only access to pull stats and such before graduating to more complicated and dangerous activities.
The Palo Alto PAN-perl-20110828.tar.gz package has examples for use of Perl and Expect. I posted a simple Perl Net::OpenSSH script in this forum. There's also the XML API, see docs DOC-1031.pdf and DOC-1714.pdf to get started.
Most automation approaches require a Linux managment PC, although I imagine that a person would be able to use Windows and something like AutoIT or other batch tool.
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