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Benefits of Switching to a Cisco Meraki MS Switch Platform

Voyager Networks have been providing IT Solutions for over 25 years. During this time we have built a depth of understanding and experience of customer challenges and requirements. Cisco Meraki forms part of our product portfolio and we have helped a number of organisations successfully migrate to this cloud managed switching platform.

The Cisco Meraki MS is the industry’s first line cloud managed access and aggregation switches, combining the benefits of cloud-based centralised management with a powerful, reliable access platform. To help build the understanding of Cisco Meraki Switch Platform let’s explore some of its features and how Cisco Meraki has redefined the management and configuration of network switches.

Voice & Video Quality of Service: Delays beyond 150 msec are often unacceptable for supporting voice and video traffic. Cisco Meraki switches support layer 2 and layer 3 quality of service (QoS), ensuring these real-time traffic flows are given priority as they enter and traverse the network.

Layer 7 app Visibility: Previously available only through costly overlay appliances, is included in Cisco Meraki switches at no additional cost. Hundreds of applications are automatically identified and reported, applications from business apps to BitTorrent and YouTube.

Virtual and Physical Stacking: Rather than separately managing each switch, switches can be grouped together into virtual stacks using tags, or even managed all at once. For high performance and management convenience, switches can also be physically stacked together and managed as a single entity.

Zero Touch Deployment: Leverage the power of centralised cloud management to pre-stage switches and virtual stacks before they are even deployed. Using this approach switch deployment becomes a zero-touch ‘plug-and-play’ exercise. Bulk changes and software updates are straightforward to push out, eliminating the need to be physically present at each switch or stack.

Dynamic Routing: OSPF’s routing algorithm automatically factors link costs (such as link bandwidth and availability) to calculate optimal pathways for routing packets from point A to point B. This efficiency translates into improved network performance, since delays across slow links are minimised.

Enterprise Security: Using 802.1x port-based network access control, MAC based authentication or a mix of the two, the network administrator can lock down access on a port-by-port basis to authorised users or devices. A guest VLAN can be configured to provide restricted access, perhaps to the Internet via a DMZ, or a remediation server.

Cable Test: With built-in remote cable testing, the network administrator can test the integrity of the cable, even when thousands of miles away. A cable test will also indicate the approximate length of the cable, helping the remote engineer understand whether they are working on a patch cable or building cabling.

Remote Packet Capture: Cisco Meraki offers the unique ability to run a detailed packet capture from anywhere with an internet connection. Simply select the port or device in dashboard and run the capture. This will generate an industry standard ‘PCAP’ file which can be opened with the usual software.

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