Getting Started


Install using pip:

pip install pan-os-python

Upgrade to the latest version:

pip install --upgrade pan-os-python

If you have poetry installed, you can also add pan-os-python to your project:

poetry add pan-os-python

Import the classes

To use pan-os-python in a project:

import panos

You can also be more specific about which modules you want to import:

from panos import base
from panos import firewall
from panos import panorama
from panos import policies
from panos import objects
from panos import network
from panos import device
from panos import plugins

Or, even more specific by importing a specific class:

from panos.firewall import Firewall

Connect to a Firewall or Panorama

A PanDevice is a Firewall or a Panorama. It’s called a PanDevice because that is the class that Firewall and Panorama inherit from. Everything connects back to a PanDevice, so creating one is often the first step:

from panos.firewall import Firewall
from panos.panorama import Panorama
fw = Firewall('', 'admin', 'mypassword')  # Create a firewall object
pano = Panorama('', 'admin', 'mypassword')  # Create a panorama object

You can also create a Firewall or Panorama object from a live device. In this example, is a firewall and is a Panorama. The device type is determined by checking the live device.:

>>> from panos.base import PanDevice

>>> device1 = PanDevice.create_from_device('', 'admin', 'mypassword')
>>> type(device1)
<class 'panos.firewall.Firewall'>

>>> device2 = PanDevice.create_from_device('', 'admin', 'mypassword')
>>> type(device2)
<class 'panos.panorama.Panorama'>

Operational commands

Operational commands are used to get or clear the current operational state of the device or make operational requests such as content upgrades. Most any command that is not a config mode or debug command is an operational command. These include many ‘show’ commands such as show system info and show interface ethernet1/1 and ‘request’ commands. You cannot use operational commands to change the running configuration of the firewall or Panorama. See Configure your device below to configure your firewall by changing the running configuration.

Perform operational commands using the op method on a PanDevice instance. By default, the return value is an xml.etree.ElementTree object which can be easily parsed:

from panos import firewall
fw = firewall.Firewall('', 'admin', 'mypassword')
element_response = fw.op('show system info')

Use the xml argument to return a string of xml. This is harder to parse, but sometimes a string is needed such as when saving to a file.:

xml_str_response = fw.op('show system info', xml=True)

Important: When passing the cmd as a command string (not XML) you must include any non-keyword strings in the command inside double quotes ("). Here’s some examples:

fw.op('clear session all filter application "facebook-base"')
# The string "facebook-base" must be in quotes because it is not a keyword

fw.op('show interface "ethernet1/1"')
# The string "ethernet1/1" must be in quotes because it is not a keyword

This works by converting all unquoted arguments in cmd to XML elements and double quoted arguments as text after removing the quotes. For example:

  • show system info -> <show><system><info></info></system></show>
  • show interface "ethernet1/1" -> <show><interface>ethernet1/1</interface></show>

The command’s XML is then sent to the firewall.

Discovering an operational command’s syntax

If you are trying to execute an operational command and the auto-formatting that pan-os-python performs doesn’t seem to be working, SSH to your PAN-OS appliance and enable debugging to see how PAN-OS is formatting the command. Let’s take the CLI command show arp all as an example. Let’s SSH to PAN-OS and see what we get back:

> debug cli on
> show arp all

<request cmd="op" cookie="2801768344648204" uid="1000"><operations><show><arp><entry name='all'/></arp></show></operations></request>

When taking debug CLI output and turning it into an operational command string, you’ll want to take all the XML inside of the <operations> tag. Thus, our command to XML conversion looks like this:

  • show arp all -> <show><arp><entry name='all'/></arp></show>

Operational commands that have an <entry> tag with an attribute (here, name='all') is not a format that pan-os-python can convert to on your behalf. Thus, you will have to send in the XML yourself and instruct pan-os-python that the cmd argument does not need to be turned into XML:

ans = fw.op("<show><arp><entry name='all'/></arp></show>", cmd_xml=False)

Parse the result

You can parse an ElementTree using the python ElementTree library.

Assuming the first op() call returns a response with this XML (output simplified for example purposes):

<response status="success">

Then this example collects the zone, mac address, and packet output for ethernet1/1:

response = fw.op('show interface "ethernet1/1"')

name = response.find(".//zone").text
# name = "DMZ"

mac_address = response.find("./result/hw/mac").text
# mac_address = "08:30:6b:1e:55:42"

counter_entries = response.findall(".//counters/ifnet/entry")
packets_out = [(counters.find("./name").text, int(counters.find("./opackets").text)) for counters in counter_entries]
# packets_out = [("ethernet1/1", 508805)]

In the example above, we use a deep search to find the <zone> element, an absolute path to get the <mac> element, and a findall with both deep search and relative path to get packets out for every subinterface. In this example there are no subinterfaces, so it returns one list item.

The opstate namespace

All pan-os-python objects have a special opstate namespace. opstate is short for “operational state” and is meant to be a central place that objects can have non-configuration utility that the object may need. For example, the Panorama object has an opstate for handling device group hierarchies and security rules have an opstate for handling audit comments. An object may also have an empty opstate if nothing is applicable or nothing has been implemented yet.

In order to find out which opstates are available, you can use .opstate.about() to see what is available for this specific object:

>>> from panos.policies import SecurityRule
>>> rule = SecurityRule("my rule name")
>>> rule.opstate.about()
{'audit_comment': <panos.policies.RuleAuditComment at 0x1024d2210>,
 'hit_count': <panos.policies.HitCount at 0x1024d2590>}

Since the full class path is provided in the output, you can use that to refer to the documentation for further information on how a particular opstate namespace works.

Using opstate namespaces

Since the opstate namespaces are always initialized, they are always ready to be used.

Here’s a firewall example where we want to create a new security rule and then configure an “initial config” audit comment:

from panos.firewall import Firewall
from panos.policies import Rulebase, SecurityRule

fw = Firewall(.......)

base = Rulebase()

rule = SecurityRule("Int to Ext", .......)

rule.opstate.audit_comment.update("initial config")

Here’s another example using Panorama where we want to change an existing rule’s description then configure an audit comment saying as much:

from panos.panorama import Panorama, DeviceGroup
from panos.policies import PreRulebase, SecurityRule

pano = Panorama(.........)

dg = DeviceGroup("myDg")

base = PreRulebase()

rule = SecurityRule("Int to Ext")

# Update the rule description
rule.description = "My new description"

rule.opstate.audit_comment.update("ID 12345 updating rule description")

Configure your device

You can configure your firewall or Panorama with a configuration tree using PanObjects. Everything in pan-os-python is a PanObject. They are like building blocks to build out a configuration. There are many methods available to build up the configuration tree and interact with the live device:

Common configuration methods of PanObject

Build the configuration tree: add(), remove(), find(), and findall()

Push changed configuration to the live device: apply(), create(), and delete()

Pull configuration from the live device: refresh(), refreshall()

There are other useful methods besides these. See Useful Methods for a table of all the methods and what they do. All methods are also documented in the panos.base.PanObject API reference.

Configuration examples

In each of these examples, assume a Firewall and Panorama object have been instantiated:

from panos.firewall import Firewall
from panos.panorama import Panorama
from panos.objects import AddressObject

fw = Firewall("", "admin", "mypassword")
pano = Panorama("", "admin", "mypassword")

Create an address object on a firewall:

webserver = AddressObject("Apache-webserver", "", description="Company web server")

In this example, add() makes the AddressObject a child of the Firewall. This does not make any change to the live device. The create() method pushes the new AddressObject to the live device represented by ‘fw’.

If you lose the handle to the AddressObject, you can always retreive it from a parent node with one of the find methods. For example:

webserver = fw.find("Apache-webserver", AddressObject)

Remove the description of that same address object:

webserver.description = None

The apply() method is used instead of create() because it is destructive. The create() method will never remove a variable or object, only add or change it.

Delete the entire address object:


The delete() method removes the object from the live device and the configuration tree. In this example, after delete() is called, ‘webserver’ is no longer a child of ‘fw’.

Retrieve configuration

The previous section describes how to build a configuration tree yourself. But many cases require you to pull configuration from the firewall to populate a PanDevice configuration tree. This technique allows many advantages including tracking current state of the device, and checking if the configuration change is already on the firewall to prevent an unnecessary commit.

In this example, the live device has 3 address objects. Pull the address objects from the live device and add them into the configuration tree:

>>> fw.children
>>> AddressObject.refreshall(fw, add=True)
>>> fw.children
[<panos.objects.AddressObject object at 0x108080e90>,
 <panos.objects.AddressObject object at 0x108080f50>,
 <panos.objects.AddressObject object at 0x108080ed0>]

It’s also possible to refresh the variables of an existing object:

>>> adserver = AddressObject("ADServer")
>>> fw.add(adserver)
>>> adserver.value
>>> adserver.refresh()
>>> adserver.value