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Cisco Converged Access Boosts Productivity At RSA

The RSA Insurance Group is a British multinational general insurance company headquartered in London, United Kingdom, operating in more than 140 countries and reaching more than 17 million customers.

Faced with challenges spurred by new trends in their work environment such as BYOD, more geographically dispersed teams and move to the cloud, RSA is using Cisco Unified Access to collaborate better, be more productive and reduce costs. RSA uses Catalyst 3850 Converged Access to truly integrate wired and wireless networks, Cisco Identity Services Engine to uniformly apply policies, and Cisco Prime to manage devices, users and resources in their network. Talking about the benefits of using Converged Access on Catalyst 3850 switches, James Sandell, Group IT Delivery Director at RSA, says “People can only work flexibly with real time presence because the underpinning wifi is rock solid, fast and its seamless to join. We use Cisco Catalyst 3850 switches with IOS XE software and integrated wireless controller and it provides One network, one management and one policy”.
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Converged Access Branch Design (MC over WAN)

“Why can’t I have MC across a WAN boundary to manage multiple branch MA?”
I get this question a lot. I get asked if it isn’t logical to have the MC at a central location across a WAN boundary managing multiple MA at different branch locations. Sometimes it’s hard to comprehend this architectural construct for folks who are migrating from the centralized WiFi world and I totally get their confusion around this subject.

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Bringing Up a New Branch Site the Easy Way with Prime Infrastructure – Part 5

Last week, I concentrated on how to use Cisco Prime Infrastructure to do troubleshooting for your network. Today, as the 5th and final post of my 5-part blog series, I’ll look at how to maintain network health for your branch site users with Prime. As a quick recap, here’s my blog series on how to set up networking with Prime for a new branch site.

WAN deployment – blog 1
Converged wired and wireless  – blog 2
Application performance – blog 3
Troubleshooting – blog 4
Network health – blog 5 (this blog)
 steve song blog 5 pic 1

As designed, you have successfully brought up your new branch site and the network is now in production. And you are well prepared to troubleshoot if anything goes wrong. Before you declare “mission accomplished”, there is one more step you can take to achieve long-term success. Just like preventive healthcare can help a person to stay healthy, Prime gives you a number of tools to monitor and maintain your network health. By making full use of these tools, you are prepared to address potential issues before they impact your network.

With Prime, you can
– Keep track of network changes with network topology maps and Device 360
° Views;
– Maintain centralized visualization across multiple Prime instances with Operations Center ; and
– Stay engaged with Cisco support integration
.

One of the things that always excites network engineers and managers is an accurate network topology map. Prime Infrastructure can provide such a map for you, which includes all your branch sites and main campus site. If there are any changes, you’ll know right away. Or, if you want to know more details, you can drill down to each networking device with Prime Device 360° View. The chart below shows a portion of Cisco’s production network topology map. Read More »

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Bringing Up a New Branch Site the Easy Way with Prime Infrastructure – Part 3

Last week, I discussed with you how to set up and managed converged wired and wireless access with Cisco Prime Infrastructure. Here, as the 3rd post of our 5-part blog series, I’ll focus on how to ensure application performance for your branch site users with Prime. Again, here’s my blog series plan on how to set up networking with Prime for a new branch site.

WAN deployment – blog 1
Converged wired and wireless  – blog 2
Application performance – blog 3 (This blog)
Troubleshooting – blog 4
Network health – blog 5
 applications

Your new branch network is up and running as planned.  Everything for your WAN, wired and wireless access is working beautifully. But how is your business application performance? At the end of the day, it’s all about the applications and user experience.

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Converged Access now available on Catalyst 4500E!

Catalyst 4500E Supervisor 8-E now supports Converged Access with the IOS XE 3.7 release. The Supervisor 8-E is the latest generation high performance supervisor for Catalyst4500E and provides cutting edge features such as Service Discovery Gateway and support for SDN Openflow in addition to Converged Access and industry leading scale and performance. Miercom recently tested the performance of Supervisor 8-E and the report can be downloaded here. Since its launch, the Supervisor 8-E has become the highest selling supervisor in modular access and has been deployed by a large portion of the Catalyst 4500 install base.

The integrated wireless functionality for Converged Access on Supervisor 8-E is implemented through the same Unified Access Data Plane (UADP) ASIC as in the Catalyst 3850, so Catalyst 4500E customers who deploy Converged Access get the same field tested solution that has been deployed by thousands of Catalyst 3850 customers. Additionally, the Converged Access solution on Supervisor 8-E provides high availability (Access Point Stateful Switchover) and investment protection for wireless, which are the hallmark of the Catalyst 4500 platform. Read More »

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