It should come as no surprise to anyone that we spend a lot of time thinking about ways to improve the Meraki Dashboard. In addition to being the primary way that customers and partners interact with Cisco Meraki products, it’s also one of the key things that sets us apart from other solutions – an intuitive GUI that allows IT professionals to manage and monitor their entire Meraki architecture easily without having to switch between multiple management consoles. We regularly push updates to Dashboard to fix minor bugs or add new features, but it’s rare that we change the fundamental style of the interface. That’s why we’re very excited to announce a brand new look for Dashboard.
The first thing most users will probably notice is that the navigation menu has changed colors, making the menus more distinct from the pages themselves. However, there are several more subtle changes to the new view. For one, the help section is now found at the top right to make it easier to get help when you need it – whether that help comes in the form of documentation, contact information for our Support team, or advisories about newly added features. For another, the left side menus are now in a fixed position independent of your position on a page, meaning that you never have to scroll up to access them. The most significant changes, though, are to the network selector and the search function.
The network selector has abandoned its previous place at the top of the page, and now lives in the navigation menu on the left side. It can be opened by simply clicking on the name of the current network. Combined with the fixed position of that menu mentioned above, that means you can easily switch between networks from anywhere in Dashboard. When you open the network selector, a text field will appear above your list of networks, allowing you to filter the list to quickly find the template or network that you are looking for. There’s also a ‘View all networks’ option that takes you directly to the Organization > Overview page.
Dashboard’s search function has also undergone a complete overhaul. With the network selector no longer at the top of the page, we’ve expanded the search into the space it formerly occupied – turning most of the top of the page into a search field. Clicking on this field will open up an interactive search window that will update as you type to show you networks, clients, documentation, or even configuration fields in Dashboard that meet your search criteria. To make things even easier, you can open this search bar from anywhere in Dashboard by pressing the forward slash button (“/”) on your keyboard, rather than clicking on the search at the top of the page.
Over the next few weeks we will be rolling this new view out on an opt-in basis. If you want to try it out, keep your eyes peeled for a “Dashboard has a new look!” notification underneath the menu options on the left side of Dashboard. You can return to the current layout and provide feedback at any time by clicking “Go back to the old look” at the bottom of the new left-hand menu. We can’t wait to hear what you think!
Meraki MV security cameras have been on the market for just a couple of weeks now, but their revolutionary new architecture hasn’t gone unnoticed. Breaking boundaries and creating new technologies is nothing new for Meraki. We did it first with wireless when we removed WLAN controllers and servers before moving on to other parts of IT. Because of this, we’re not strangers to the multitude of questions and concerns that can arise from our customers when they first encounter these new and very different architectures.
The release of MV security cameras has been no different. We understand just how important security is to our customers and know that it’s our job to ensure those using MV cameras can rest at ease knowing their offices, schools, and other facilities are well taken care of. This is why our engineering team made it a top priority to implement full, at-rest disk encryption (using AES-256, for those nerdier types), which is now standard for all MV cameras—right alongside native management and transport encryption of video.
Those who have encrypted a personal computer before know that it can take hours to secure all that data, so those plugging in MV cameras for the first time may encounter up to a 20 minute encryption process. Encrypting a computer can also be a huge hassle, but we’ve made sure that our encryption process requires no configuration on the user’s end, in true Meraki fashion. The only thing required is a little bit of patience (we know it will be hard!), as refraining from unplugging the camera during initial boot up will ensure everything goes smoothly. The good news is that cameras only need undergo this encryption process once, so after the initial start up, cameras can be unplugged and restarted with much shorter boot times.
MV, like all of the other Meraki product lines, are cloud-managed, meaning the newest and best features will always be pushed to Meraki devices without any additional cost to our customers. Our engineers carefully process every piece of feedback that comes through our make-a-wish tool located at the bottom of each and every dashboard page, and use these comments to inform what features they work on next.
Full disk encryption was released just a week after MV became available—just imagine what else our engineers have up their sleeves! Meraki’s commitment to data security is just as serious as our commitment to making easy-to-use, yet feature rich products. Don’t miss your chance to participate in the product development process by making a wish.
Another round of the Meraki Startup Kit promotion has come and gone, but this time it happened down under in Australia.
Between January and July 2016, Meraki held a promotion enabling promising Australian startups to win a set of Meraki gear including MR wireless APs, an MS Switch, and an MX Security Appliance. Meraki was once a startup, so we know how important it is for a growing organization to have a reliable network infrastructure and wanted to give back by supporting startups in their own growth.
After careful consideration, we chose our final winners and have already sent them their switch, security appliance, and APs so they could perfect their network while they continue to scale their businesses. These winners are focused on solving problems ranging from university education loans to wearables for sports to workplace safety. Check out the winners below!
Here’s some of the feedback we’ve already received from our excited winners:
The Fleetsu team loves their new MR32 APs!
Forcite Helmet Systems visited Meraki HQ in San Francisco and demoed their product – very cool!
Blue Chilli unboxing their new gear.
We’ll report back in a few months to see what these startups are doing with their new Meraki gear. Congratulations to our winners!
Forcite Helmet Systems (http://www.forcite.com.au): Development and integration of smart helmet products for athletes, explorers, and recreational users
Safety Culture (https://safetyculture.com): Mobile-first applications that empower users to have safe and efficient workplaces
Anyone who’s had something stolen from their office knows that losing the laptop is only half of the annoyance. After a break-in, traditional video surveillance solutions only add insult to injury, requiring complicated software tools for retrieving video from a recording device (such as an network video record, or NVR for short). All too often, administrators have to export days, or even weeks of footage, and rely on the fast forward button and a strong cup of coffee to spot the incident. This experience that many of our customers have endured highlights the underlying problem with video surveillance solutions: security cameras are only useful if you can find what you’re looking for.
Enter, Meraki MV cameras. MV features a tool called Motion Search, which allows users to retroactively select key areas of a video feed and returns motion events that happened in that area. See how quick and powerful Motion Search is:
We’re incredibly excited to get MV into more people’s hands to hopefully decrease the pain associated not just with loss prevention, but also process control, as well as many other applications yet to be explored. Losing a laptop is bad enough — finding out who did it should be easy.