Device Property Inheritance

Automatically Assign Properties to Devices Based on Group Settings

Auto Organize Your Network Devices

With FrameFlow you can apply settings to your device groups and then set the devices into automatically inherit those properties. That way, just by adding a new device or dragging an existing one into a folder it can automatically be assigned tags, a device type, an icon, authentication and more.

For example, maybe you are using SNMP to monitor a set of switches, routers and other networking devices. With FrameFlow you can create a new device group called “IT Monitoring” and drag all of those devices into it. With inheritance enabled, all devices in that group will inherit the properties that you selected at the group level. Even better, when you deploy new equipment and add it to that folder your FrameFlow monitoring configuration, they will automatically pick up the same properties too.

Assigning Properties

To assign properties to a device group, right-click on the group and choose “Properties”.

Inheritable Properties for Devices

In the dialog that appears, turn on the option to enable inheritance for the selected group. A list of inheritable properties will be displayed. You can select device type, icon, widgets, maintenance windows, authentication, tags and dependencies which will be passed on to devices in the group.

Note that by default devices do not inherit from the groups that they are in. Use the option to “Set all child devices to inherit device properties” to enable inheritance for all devices that are currently members of the group.

When you add a new network device to a group that has been enabled with inheritance, an option appears allowing you to select whether or not the new devices will inherit or not. Whichever you select, you can always change this option at a later time by visiting the settings tab for individual devices.

Tips and Techniques

When deploying a new FrameFlow monitoring configuration or when redesigning an existing one, it’s good practice to first create a number of device groups and set their properties appropriately. For example if you know you will be adding multiple network switches to your monitoring configuration, create a device group and assign it an appropriate icon, device type and tags.

Next you can use FrameFlow’s device finder or its discovery event monitors to find the network switches and add them to the device group you made. They’ll automatically pick up the settings you selected for the group, saving you time and effort.

Inheritance of Tags

Most device properties use regular inheritance where the selected value for the group overrides the device’s settings. For device tags, FrameFlow implements a slightly different strategy that offers additional flexibility. Instead of replacing the tags for the devices, the devices inherit the tags in addition to any other tags that have already been assigned to them.

That way, each device can have very specific tags that apply only it, as is the case with serial numbers, service tags and contact details.

Property Inheritance Demo

We’ve recorded a short video so you can see for yourself how device property inheritance works. Watch as a new device group is created, properties are assigned to it and then devices automatically pick up those properties as they are dragged into the folder.

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