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Inside Meraki and Cloud Networking

November 3, 2014 at 8:30 am PST
Robb Boyd and Jimmy Ray Purser decide where to dig around inside Meraki

Robb Boyd and Jimmy Ray Purser decide where to dig around inside Meraki

“If it seems to good to be true…”

In this statement lies the central problem to a couple of guys with a career in networking: Meraki does some beautifully complex things…but in a deceivingly simple wrapper.

Meraki originally came on the scene with a new approach to cloud based wireless “as a service” that succeeded on a great many fronts. This success brought not just an acquisition, but subsequent forays into switching, routing and security. These are your core technologies -- anyone in business is depending on these in some fashion..and the Meraki Cloud Model is now offering network sophistication in a greatly simplified package.

There is beauty in the simplicity. There is also a model for how and why the cloud matters. Yes there is hardware for every bit of the solution being offered but the true ‘service’ is delivered quite elegantly through the cloud. It enables a great many things in a manner that can make you wonder what you may be missing.

So this is what we do. We go to San Francisco, where it all began…and where these engineers continue to innovate. We peer through the clouds and show you what is going on so you can decide if it is right for you.

Watch the show RIGHT NOW

Couple of questions we sought in general:

  • Where are the edges for Cisco’s On Premise technologies that offer many of the same features as Meraki?
  • Can you put your trust in something you cannot see?
  • Can you still do some of the more complex things your network demands?
  • Where do they go from here?

One of the bigger challenges right now within Cisco is how to position this technology. It is very complimentary to our core networking line but they remain a distinctly unique choice to make.

See our extended shownotes for more details, or just watch the show!

Preview:

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Summary: The First 4 Steps to Simplify Your Small Business Information Technology

Sam O’Daniel (better known as the Startup IT Guy) has put together a short list of steps to take when starting or just simplifying your business information technology.  If the next couple of months are your slow season, you can get these steps in motion to have a better handle on IT in the new year. From signing up with a cloud productivity suite to establishing a vendor relationship for purchasing to streamlining network hardware (on Meraki gear, of course!), these 4 steps will help get you out of IT support and put your focus back where it belongs -- your business.

Read the full article here.

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Broad Industry Support Taking Network Functions Virtualization (NFV) to Next Level

Cisco will Leverage OPNFV Efforts in Evolved Services Platform (ESP) Development

Most people following industry trends are aware of the ETSI Network Functions Virtualization (NFV) Industry Specification Group, which was formed in 2012 and kicked off its first set of specifications in October 2013. These documents are commonly used references in the growing movement to utilize NFV for carrier-grade network services.

Great progress has already been made, and Cisco has delivered many innovative NFV solutions via our Evolved Services Platform. To take it to the next level, and realize the full potential of NFV, customers will now start flexibly combining components from different vendors to enjoy the benefits of open source efforts.

Hence the announcement on Tuesday of Open Platform for Network Functions Virtualization (OPNFV), a new open source project focused on accelerating NFV’s evolution through an integrated, open platform.  Cisco is a platinum-level founding member of the project, which will focus initially on the NFV infrastructure (NFVI) and infrastructure management (VIM) of the ETSI NFV Reference Architecture.

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Source: Publications and Collateral page at opnfv.org.

OPNFV expects to Read More »

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The Foundation for a Business Relevant Network

With the growing influx of new mobile devices, connected things, bandwidth intensive applications and more data, the network is more relevant to business success than ever before.  Back in June of 2012, Cisco saw that we needed to move away from multiple network systems loosely linked together to an agile and simple infrastructure, streamlined policy and centralized management would be needed to support new business demands. We called it Cisco Unified Access and we aligned the solution to three pillars: One Network, One Policy and One Management.

For the last few years, we have focused on delivering new products and functionality under this Unified Access model. Below is a timeline of products released as part of the Unified Access framework. Cisco lead the way in delivering gigabit 802.11ac Wi-Fi., converged wireless control in access switches and through the acquisition of Meraki – a complete cloud-managed network solution.

foundation

The timeline above doesn’t represent every feature and function we have delivered, but it shows Cisco’s commitment to this Unified Access model, both from a cloud-managed and on-premise solution perspective.

Today, Cisco is announcing a number of new products and new functionality to existing products that will help mobilize the workforce, secure the business and increase IT agility. The announcement includes the following: Read More »

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Cisco Meraki Systems Manager Extends Enterprise Mobility Management to the Cloud

The industry is going beyond BYOD—it’s not just about simply connecting the device anymore: the mobile landscape has grown to include apps, devices and content, all of which require security and management. This is no easy task. Enterprise mobility management (EMM) is no longer a nice-to-have for our customers—it is a necessity. You need a mobile strategy.

We at Cisco have been steadily building out our mobility portfolio across infrastructure, policy and management over the past few years to provide our customers with what they need to get ahead of the mobile trend.

It has always been Cisco’s strategy to use open API’s with ISE to integrate with host of 3rd party EMM vendors, including Citrix, MobileIron, Airwatch and many more. We are now extending that flexibility to create a cloud-managed EMM offering with our Cisco Meraki solution.  The latest addition to the Cisco mobility portfolio, the Cisco Meraki Systems Manager Enterprise is an evolution of Cisco Meraki’s existing MDM cloud offer, and a natural extension of the Cisco Meraki network management solution (e.g. extending management of wireless access points to the management of devices connecting to the enterprise domain).

Cisco is committed to customer choice, and will continue to offer different options to the market, including ecosystem EMM partner solutions. The addition of the Cisco Meraki Systems Manager broadens that portfolio to strengthen our offering and empower our customers attain the mobility solution best suited for their specific requirements.

For more information on the Cisco Meraki Systems Manager, read the full announcement blog here.

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