Ivan makes a very good point that using nerd knobs is bad for your business. He is perfectly correct that too many people do it because they can and without careful consideration of the technical debt incurred.
I would like to add a few more things about Nerd Knobs:
- Nerd Knobs are a symptoms of deeper failings in networking. In my view, routing protocols are losing relevance in a multi-path, multi-network world of 2015. Or because routing protocols converge slowly & poorly. We use NATv4 instead if IPv6, PBR instead of SDN and so on.
- Nerd Knobs are what happens when vendors give customers what they ask for instead of what they need. Vendors recite the mantra of giving customers what they want. After all that is where the money comes from. But customers are ill equipped to ask for the right things and their businesses want to build a 20-storey building one floor at a time without paying for the foundations or plumbing.
- Poor leadership – most IT managers have lost the ability to recognise technical debt and its impacts. The focus on process, ITIL and operations combined with vendor dependency/outsourcing for architecture & validated designs has de-skilled manager decision making competency.
Nerd Knobs are symptoms of much deeper problems/technical debt in the networking market and treat the cause not the symptom.
Summary: Headache tablets treat a headache and are cheap & easy to get – like nerd knobs. Get a good network architect if pain persists. You might have migraine or a flawed network technology.