Archive for February, 2013

Cloud Managed WiFi at North Hawaii Community Hospital

We were lucky enough to have Bob Yap, former Systems Administrator of  North Hawaii Community Hospital (NHCH), share his Meraki story with us on February 6, 2013.

NHCH is a privately-funded, full-service hospital on the Big Island in Kamuela, Hawaii. Last year, the hospital decided to upgrade its existing Motorola equipment in order to support hospital devices and respond to increasing demand for wireless internet access. After evaluating a few vendors, a CDW partner introduced Bob and NHCH to Meraki’s HIPAA-compliant solution.

Bob was immediately drawn to the simplicity of the centralized cloud managed dashboard because of the limited IT resources at NHCH.  Using Meraki, the hospital’s lean IT staff was able to deploy and configure wireless coverage in just six weeks with minimal disruption to hospital patients.

Meraki’s high-performance wireless APs improved network reliability and allowed the nurses to use Computers on Wheels (COWs) with much more mobility.  Bob used Meraki’s cloud managed dashboard to configure multiple SSIDs and separated secure hospital data from the guest network.  He also incorporated the integrated Layer 7 firewall to prevent guests from accessing inappropriate or distracting material.

If you weren’t able to join us live last week, you can watch the webinar recording to hear North Hawaii Community Hospital’s success story.

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Startup Kit Spotlight: Good Eggs

Our latest Startup Kit Spotlight features our Mission district neighbor Good Eggs.

The mission of Good Eggs is to grow and sustain local food systems worldwide using technology. It’s a local food marketplace, a guide to eating well, and a set of tools to help local farmers and foodmakers sell directly to customers. Good Eggs caught our attention because of its unique approach to a traditionally staid industry. Its mission to change our food systems is a valiant goal, and its methods are quintessentially San Francisco.

Bob Zoller reached out on behalf of the Good Eggs team and mentioned that Good Eggs and Meraki used to share an office back in our early days. While both companies have grown to need our own spaces, Good Eggs is still only a stone’s throw away from the current Meraki headquarters.

AJ and Jen delivered the Startup Kit (by hand truck!) in person. Bob showed us their existing network closet of consumer gear, which he was more than happy to replace with a Meraki Startup Kit.

We also got a look at the lovely Good Eggs office and kitchen.

Below, Bob shows off his Meraki pride.

We’re still sending out #StartupKits in small batches.  If you’ve applied, please be patient, and in the meantime look out for each week’s Startup Kit Spotlight.

Meraki at Bett 2013

(Guest post by Kathy Liu, Events Marketing Manager)

We had a blast meeting everyone at last week’s Bett Show 2013 at the ExCeL Center in London! Thanks to everyone who stopped by the Meraki stand to meet the team, learn more about Meraki, and see our products in action. Our stand was packed all 4 days with 1-on-1 and group demos of each of our product lines. As always, stand visitors were particularly excited to see demos of Systems Manager, our completely free MDM solution for managing iPads and other devices.

As a follow-up to the show, we’re hosting a set of special webinars to expand on the K-12 solutions we presented at Bett. These webinars are hosted by IT directors at UK schools, discussing real-world challenges and their experience with Meraki. You’ll learn more about how devices on your network present security and bandwidth challenges, and how to manage a growing number of devices in your school without additional cost or complexity. We’ll also include a live demo of the Meraki dashboard, illustrating just how easy it is to see devices on the network, measure their impact, and apply policies by device type.

Wednesday, February 13 10AM GMT featuring Cirencester College
Neil Sperring, Director of IT Services at Cirencester College, shares the story of the “easiest and most enjoyable wireless deployment” he’s ever done.

Wednesday, February 20 3:30PM GMT featuring Concord College
James Sumnall, ICT Manager at Concord College, talks about WiFi at the college both past and present.

We’ve got some great shots of our fantastic booth and the Meraki team working it! Enjoy!


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Manage Devices With Instant Alerts

Monitoring devices and systems connecting to your network is key to sustaining network health, but some devices are more difficult than others to track.  Point of Sale cash registers, IP PBX boxes, IP cameras, VMware servers, storage systems, or certain embedded devices, for example, are often critical infrastructure that network admins want to keep online.  But centrally monitoring their real-time connectivity is not always possible with traditional solutions requiring an installed monitoring agent.

Enter the MX client connectivity monitoring tool, just released.  It allows you to specify individual devices to survey in real-time and track their online status.

Eight devices are being monitored in real-time; alerts will be emailed to IT admins.

Connectivity is checked every 1-2 seconds, and when a device fails to respond for 30 seconds, an alert is issued (IP address changes are handled gracefully, and do not trigger offline alerts).  If a device goes dark, connectivity continues to be monitored from the dashboard so that once it reconnects it is immediately recognized.

Connectivity alerts also generate events in the MX’s Event Log, and are filterable using the “client status” check box.

The MX Event Log will capture client status events for devices being monitored in real-time.

With this client monitoring capability, IT administrators get immediate feedback when critical systems go offline, even if those systems cannot support traditional monitoring solutions.

We’ll be exploring additional features being rolled out to our MX line of security appliances, so stay tuned!


Cisco Forecasts Global Mobile Traffic

Our friends at Cisco have announced an update to the Global Mobile Data Traffic Forecast, part of the Visual Networking Index. The VNI pulls from a range of independent global analyses as well as data gathered directly from user devices to offer an up-t0-date look at current trends in Internet usage and predict the trends of the future.

Today’s update focuses specifically on mobile, highlighting the explosion of traffic being used by smartphones, tablets, and other 3G and 4G capable devices. According to the report, mobile data traffic in 2012 was nearly twelve times the size of the entire global Internet in 2000, and, for the first time ever, mobile video was responsible for over half of that traffic.

In addition to a look back at the data from the past year, this update to the VNI also predicts usage patterns through 2017. In 2012, monthly mobile traffic worldwide topped out around 0.9 exabytes (a billion gigabytes!), and in 2017, Cisco predicts we’ll be consuming over 11 exabytes of data per month on mobile devices. By then, the mobile traffic of tablets alone will surpass the total mobile traffic we saw in 2012. And just one year from now, the number of mobile devices with Internet connections will be larger than the global population.

We’ve picked out just a few of the statistics that grabbed our attention, but if you’re already having trouble supporting mobile devices on your network you’ll definitely want to head over to the VNI site and take a look at the numbers for yourself. Even if you’re not a network administrator, the report is an interesting read and oftentimes a downright awe-inspiring look at the sheer volume of traffic we’re generating on mobile devices.

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