Archive for the ‘Company Blog’ Category

Green is the new Gold

One of the trends of 2015 was the enthusiasm we saw for Meraki t-shirts, especially from participants at the many events we attended. More than just free ‘schwag’, the Meraki t-shirt seems to have a greater appeal, with more than one person telling us it was their favorite tech shirt. The combination of bold green color, modern design, and Meraki brand stands out in a way which has caused complete strangers to stop us in the street to talk about Meraki.

However this is not the whole story, and we will admit to an oversight in last year’s t-shirt inventory planning. We had only a small number of bright green Meraki t-shirts manufactured, with the rest in a patterned grey.

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For those not familiar with the technicalities of the Meraki brand, the green shirts were dyed to match the exact Meraki green, known as Pantone 368 U. This bold and vivid colour was thought to be too intense for day–to–day wear, and we only made enough for event staff. The grey variant was picked as our choice of shirt giveaway for the 2015 event season.

As it turns out, we could not have been more wrong in our assumptions about people’s desire for bright Meraki green shirts. The number of people asking to switch their shirt from grey to green became so numerous we lost count, but we did listen and have heard you loud and clear. With that, we are excited to launch the brand new 2016 season Meraki t-shirt, custom dyed Meraki Pantone 368 U green!

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Would you like to get your hands on a pure Meraki green t-shirt? If so, then you should put a date in your diary to come visit us at one of the many events we are attending this year. The next opportunity to bag your ‘schwag’ is Cisco Live! Berlin. An extensive team of Merakians will be in attendance for presentations, demonstrations, and meetings. Find out more by reading this blog post.

 

New! Australia Startup Kit

The Startup Kit promotion was a hit in the United States, Canada, and the United Kingdom in recent years. This time around, we want to bring it to a new region and help more startups grow their businesses.

Meraki was once a startup too, so we know what it’s like to have limited resources, be scrappy, and to work into the wee small hours of the night. Though we hope you aren’t working around the clock, we’d like to support your network infrastructure by helping you save time, resources, and money. We want to make sure that your wireless and wired networks are easy to manage and in top performance at all times and when you need them most by giving you a chance to win the Meraki Startup Kit. If you’re reading this and not part of a startup, be sure to share this promotion with a friend who is!

The Meraki Startup Kit has all of the hardware and software you need to set up a full network, including:

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We will be awarding Startup Kits to up to 10 companies based on their ability to put a Cisco Meraki network to good use. To apply, fill out this short application form between 25 January 2016 to 30 July 2016.

There are some important eligibility requirements to be aware of. In order to place Startup Kits with organizations that will receive the most value from them, eligible companies must:

  • Have raised seed or Series A funding from VC firms and/or established angel investors
  • Be headquartered in Australia
  • Have not previously received promotional Meraki products, other than a free AP or a free switch from attending a webinar

The Meraki Startup Kit for Australian startups is a limited-time offer. Eligibility is at the sole discretion of Cisco Systems.

Enter by 30 July 2016 for a chance to receive your very own Meraki Startup Kit! To learn more about the products in the Startup Kit, attend an interactive webinar, see a live demo, and get your questions answered by our Product Specialists.

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Talk Meraki

The Meraki team recently celebrated exceeding half a million active networks around the world for the first time. With so many people now using our APs, switches, security appliances and MDM, we know there will be many discussions and questions arising every day.

The good news is that we inhabit the same online spaces as many of our customers and partners and we love to talk all things Meraki, as you might expect. Here are the places where we’re most regularly dropping-in.

Twitter came into existence in the same year as Meraki, 2006. Just one year later we signed-up and this was our first communication to the world over that medium:

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Ahhhh, those were the days, full of lofty goals to cover the city of San Francisco with mesh WiFi, using technology our founders pioneered at MIT. From there our account has grown to the point where today over 17,000 are following what we have to say. The account is mostly a mouthpiece today, however for those who like to engage in conversation on Twitter, several of our employees maintain accounts focused around our work at the company, and we love to chat. Partners can also head over to @MerakiPartners for more focused discussion.

When 140 characters isn’t quite enough, we also have a couple of communities which we regularly hang out on. Our public Google community recently passed 1000 members and generates some interesting content, debate and questions. Sometimes it just helps to ‘network’ a question and see how other customers are tackling challenges, and this is the place to do it.

Another popular medium in the tech community is Reddit. Since launching our own subreddit last year we’ve enjoyed seeing some – occasionally very – lively discussion, and as is appropriate for the site, there’s no shortage of technical topics. Definitely one for the committed internet addict.

When the day’s work is done, we love to share the lighter side of life at Meraki. If you’re one of the billions on Facebook, please like our page and say hi!

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Finally, we also have presence on other popular networks like LinkedIn and Spiceworks. In fact, let’s just keep this simple. If you’re looking for a place to share your experiences, ask your questions, or just like some of the crazy photos we post, there’s a place where you’ll find us.

See you online!

 

We’re ready for Bett – See you soon, London!

For the 4th year in a row, Meraki is crossing the pond and heading to Bett 2016 in London from January 20-23rd. If you’re planning on attending, be sure to stop by our stand, E90, to say hello!

We’ll be giving hourly presentations about our mobile device management platform (Systems Manager) as well as live demos of our cloud-based dashboard. Not to mention, we’ll have lots of great Meraki giveaways – including limited edition #Fullstack tshirts! Here’s what we’ll be talking about daily in the booth:

11AM: Device overload! How to Escape the Chaos
Get a quick intro to our MDM solution – Systems Manager – and how it will help you breeze through this school year.

12PM: Meraki 101
Learn what it means to manage your network from the cloud.

1PM: Meet Your New Teacher’s Assistant
Calling all teachers! We’ll show you how Systems Manager makes classroom device management easy as pi.

2PM: MDM Study Hall
Already using Systems Manager? Thinking about getting started? Stop by and get all your questions answered.

3PM: “Straight A” Success Stories
Learn how primary, secondary and higher education campuses have used Meraki to simplify their network management.

4PM: Meraki 101
In case you miss the earlier session! Learn what it means to manage your network from the cloud.

And don’t miss our Learn Live sessions, featuring fellow IT managers and Meraki product experts. These will take place in the Secondary Theatre and all audience members will receive a FREE AP just for being there!

Thursday, 21 January at 11:15am–11:45am
Friday, 22 January at 11:15am–11:45am

Hope to see you in London next week! 
Cheers,
The Meraki Events Team

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Join Us for the Meraki Quarterly Update

A major benefit of Meraki cloud management is that as our technology continues to advance and develop richer capabilities, existing customers benefit from new software features at no additional cost. Our customers are a critical part of the Meraki family, and we want to offer your network the best!

Sometimes, it’s easy to get caught up in the craziness of life and miss out on neat feature releases that could make managing your Meraki network even better. We understand this, and have developed a solution: The Meraki Quarterly Update webinar series.

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Once a quarter, we bring specialists from each Meraki product family into our webinar room and have them explain key updates to wireless, switching, security, and MDM. Audience members have the ability to ask questions at any time and get answers straight from the experts during this live presentation.

Sound enticing? You’re in luck, the next Meraki Quarterly is right around the corner! Mark your calendar for Tuesday, January 19th, at 10:00 AM PT, and save your spot by registering here.

If you can’t make it, not to worry, we will have a recording available on our website soon after the presentation. Can’t wait to see you soon!

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A 2015 Year in Review

With a new year already upon us and brimming with exciting possibilities, it’s important for us to take a look back at the past year to see how far we’ve come.

2015 began with new feature releases designed to ease some of the challenges routinely faced by network administrators. VPN-tagging on the MX provided additional flexibility to establish targeted third-party VPN peer connections with specifically tagged Meraki networks, instead of having organization-wide availability. The introduction of the dedicated standalone site survey mode on Meraki APs made planning new deployments a breeze, reducing the amount of time and equipment needed for that perfect setup.

Network admins also ticked their security checkbox with port isolation on the Meraki switches, successfully preventing client devices from communicating with each other, but without having to create separate VLANs for each port.

As the winter thawed and we London-based employees vainly looked for the first warm sunrays of spring, our engineers focused on making it easier to deploy both brand new organizations, as well as new devices in existing organizations. From creating eye-catching networks at events to supporting large distributed networks, we shared some useful tips. Did you know you can create AP and Security Appliance templates and tether hundreds or even thousands of sites to them? What about building fullstack locations from a template…in bulk? We were pleased to announce that functionality too!

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We made sure to invest time in our employees and the community as well. Employees at Meraki banded together to tackle pressing workplace issues including gender equality, the attainability of a healthy work-life balance, and inspiring confidence to reach individual goals. The expansion of Meraki Gives spurred an ongoing, company-wide community outreach program dedicated to giving back and volunteering in various programs. It’s even been great to see Meraki products around the globe being used to support disaster relief efforts and provide workers with the resources they need.

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The summer months saw the development of numerous Systems Manager features, many of which arrived just in time for the start of the Fall school term. New additions to the security policies for Systems Manager permit admins to have visibility and control over applications, programs, and processes on end-user devices.

But what about device management during classes? Our engineering turned Meraki network into every teacher’s personal Teacher’s Assistant through a specially designed version of role-based administration. Now teachers were given the ability to take charge and instantly lock down devices, push content, share devices between students, and cast via AirPlay.

We didn’t throw caution to the wind with Systems Manager though; as the saying goes, “with great power, comes great responsibility.” Organizations can limit which admins have access to which devices, control network access and device permissions with SM Sentry, and even streamline the traditionally complex EAP-TLS deployment for WiFi authentication.

Nearing the end of the summer months, we announced the release of NetFlow on the Security Appliances, as well as a new and improved version of our CMX API, making it even easier for customers to take advantage of the rich analytics available in the Meraki dashboard.

That wasn’t all we announced over the summer, we also opened two new offices in Sydney and London, making the team more accessible around the globe.

Sydney Office Opening

An excited Merakian welcomes us to the new Sydney office!

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The European teams proudly display their country flags!

September marked an historic moment as Cisco and Apple announced a strategic partnership, including Meraki support of iOS 9 in Systems Manager on the same day it launched. Not too long after, silent app installation with VPP and Sentry Policies, which links Systems Manager to MR and MX Group Policies, were announced for Systems Manager.

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Not to be outdone, new MS features including port mirroring and DHCP functionality for multiple VLANs on Layer 2 switches were released alongside a much improved view of the VPN, AP, and MDM pages in the dashboard.

New VPN Status page

We rounded off the year with even more exciting announcements. Let’s talk about security first. In November we launched the brand new MX84 Security Appliance which has twice the performance and capacity as its predecessor and increased WAN, Ethernet, and SFP fiber ports. With this launch came support for dual-active VPN connectivity and Intelligent WAN (IWAN) features, which will ensure that more demanding applications receive the bandwidth they need.

Next, we announced the world’s first cloud managed stackable switches. These switches are just as easy and hassle-free to configure and monitor as the other switch families, but they pack a punch! You can aggregate links between adjacent stacks with all of them forwarding traffic and maximize stack bandwidth with a technology called spatial reuse, providing up to 160Gb/s of aggregate stack bandwidth. Remember Dave? He’s already taking advantage of the simplicity inherent in the switches!

Dave the IT guy

It’s been an action-packed year with ample new features to keep you busy, employees looking to improve themselves and their communities, and ground-breaking announcements which will continue to change the future of networking. We can’t wait see what the new year has to offer us, but we’re sure it’s going to be exciting!

Photo shoot at Cisco in San Francisco, Calif., Friday, June 21, 2013. Photos by Alison Yin and Adm Golub/Alison Yin Photography

Photo shoot at Cisco in San Francisco, Calif., Friday, June 21, 2013.
Photos by Alison Yin and Adm Golub/Alison Yin Photography

All hands and paws are on deck for 2016!

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IWAN Webinars: Get ‘Em While They’re Hot!

Happy New Year, dear reader! Here at Meraki, we’re kicking off 2016 with a new addition to the webinar portfolio. With the recent announcement of our IWAN open beta, we’ve added a series of IWAN webinars designed to provide information on how to use the Meraki MX to more effectively utilize multiple internet links.

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This webinar will highlight the three primary components of Meraki IWAN: Active-Active VPN, Policy-based Routing, and Dynamic Path Selection. Tune in to see some of the ways in which IWAN can improve network performance and resiliency, as well as a live demo of the IWAN configuration interface in the Meraki Dashboard.

You can sign up for one of the available sessions here.

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Time to unwind

Wow. What a 2015! It’s been another frenetic year for Meraki, with sales and the team continuing to grow at a breakneck pace. We hope all our readers have had an equally successful year to look back on, and are looking forward to a well-earned rest.

In the run up to the holidays we’ve allowed ourselves the freedom to indulge in some suitably questionable clothing choices, as has become the tradition of our age. Here are a couple of examples. Meet the winners of our ugly sweater and PJ day contests:

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Suitably topical? We tend to think so, and so too did this gentleman who decided to drop-in on our offices to help with the judging:

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Finally, Santa may not have any more Meraki goodies to distribute this year, but rest assured we’re going to be hitting the ground running in 2016 and will have more new products and features to announce in the very near future. Our New Years Resolution is going to be simple: keep on delighting our customers with more IT designed to make life easier and lower costs. I’m sure we can all raise a toast to that! Speaking of toast, here’s the latest addition to our kitchen countertop…

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Yes, our very own Todd Nightingale, the man who leads the Meraki team. We thought this a fitting tribute.

Happy Holidays to you and your loved ones. We’ll see you in 2016!

Meraki Gives: Holiday Update

Happy holidays from Cisco Meraki! As we start to prepare for the hustle and bustle that accompany this festive season, we’re proud of our employees that took time to give back to the San Francisco community. Meraki Gives, our employee volunteer program, put on two events this month for employees based at headquarters.

To kick off December, a group of eighteen Merakians loaded up a fleet of cars with sandwich supplies, headed over to the St. Vincent de Paul Society in San Francisco, and prepared 200 packed lunches for the organization’s drop-in lunch program.

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Our group made 140 turkey sandwiches. After running out of bread, the team got creative and made a gluten-free option with tasty turkey and cheese wraps. Everything looked delicious, if we do say so ourselves, and it took quite a bit of willpower to make sure none of the meals ended up in our own stomachs. The sandwiches were then packaged with a pickle, clementine, and bottle of water.

After a few hours of teamwork and multiple sandwich assembly lines, the Meraki group headed up to the society’s main room and passed out lunches to people dropping in. A direct quote: “These sandwiches are the bomb! Thank you!” Thank you, St. Vincent, for letting us participate in this impactful program.

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Later in the month, an in-house PB&J and holiday card-making event helped spread the holiday cheer even further. Over the course of four hours, Meraki employees from every department dropped by our cafeteria to make sandwiches for local SF organizations fighting hunger. By the end of the day, we had over 555 peanut butter and jelly sandwiches packaged and picked up by Food Runners, the amazing group that picks up extra lunch from Meraki every day.

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Merakians also showed off their creative flair by making dozens of holiday cards to be sent to the St. Vincent de Paul Society.

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Keep up the great work Merakians! We can’t wait to see what we achieve in 2016.

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Bringing Meraki to the heart of Europe

As 2015 comes to a close and the winter weather sets in, the Meraki team have been planning the many exciting events we will be attending next year. One of the big events kicking off the year is Cisco Live! in Berlin.

Along with an extensive presence in the world of solutions, a number of members of the Meraki team will be running sessions throughout the week. This is a fantastic opportunity to hear the latest product updates, get detailed information on feature functionality, and expand your cloud managed networking knowledge. All speaking sessions will be presented by experts from the product marketing team, and in typical Meraki fashion will be in an engaging and interactive style that includes live demonstrations.

If you’re planning on coming to Cisco Live! and would like to attend one of the Meraki sessions, we suggest you sign up as soon as possible to secure a place. Meraki sessions at last years Cisco Live! in Milan were exceptionally popular, with a queue for last minute places. To easily book your spot, visit the Cisco Live! Berlin content catalog page for Meraki here.

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Intermediate – Cloud-Managed Mobility with Meraki Wireless and MDM [BRKEWN-2002]

George Bentinck, Solutions Architect

Tuesday, Feb 16, 11:15 a.m.

Session Length: 1 hr 30 min

This session will provide a recap of the Meraki cloud architecture and an in depth look at the latest Meraki WLAN offerings. Accompanying this will be an extensive look at managing mobility in the enterprise, with detailed discussion of mobility security and integration of MDM and EMM into WLAN. The session will be a mixture of slides, demonstrations, and audience interaction.

WiFi meet Beacons meet MDM with Cisco Meraki [BRKEWN-2066]

Simon Tompson,Technical Evangelist

Thursday, Feb 18, 2:30 p.m.

Session Length: 1 hr 30 min

A lot has been happening in the world of Cloud Managed Wireless. Join the Cisco Meraki team to learn about the very latest portfolio developments in the world of 802.11ac WiFi, Location Analytics, BLE Beacons, and integrated MDM policies.

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Cloud-Managed Security for Distributed Networks with Cisco Meraki MX [BRKSEC-2055]

Joe Aronow, Product Marketing Manager

Wednesday, Feb 17, 11:30 a.m.

Session Length: 1 hr 30 min

Meraki’s cloud managed networking portfolio includes out-of-the-box centralized management capabilities to help administrators secure distributed networks. This session will provide a product update on the Cisco Meraki MX security appliance with an emphasis on new and existing security features. The session will feature a live demo of key security capabilities such as the new IWAN features, SourceFire IPS/IDS, Malware Protection, and more.

Building Scalable, Flexible Enterprise Architectures with Cisco Meraki [BRKCRS-2101]

Simon Tompson,Technical Evangelist

Friday, Feb 19, 9:00 a.m.

Session Length: 2 hr

The simplicity and flexibility associated with cloud managed networking isn’t limited to small and medium sized organizations. The Cisco Meraki product family helps customers to easily build and maintain scalable, resilient networks containing thousands of devices with enterprise-class performance. During this session we’ll walk through the management tools, features and architectures available across Cisco’s popular cloud managed portfolio of wireless, switching, security and MDM products, demonstrating how customers can scale with confidence.

Cisco Enterprise WLANs: understanding all the solution options and required technology details [TECEWN-2016]

George Bentinck, Solutions Architect, Meraki

Aadil Hassim, SE, Cisco

Gerhard Jaeggle, SE, Cisco

Maren Kostede, Systems Engineer, Cisco

Monday, Feb 15, 9:00 a.m.

Session Length: 8 hr

This technical seminar is a deep dive into the different options that you get for a full Wireless Network design at Cisco. It includes all necessary baseline knowledge to understand 802.11 and WiFi important differences with wired deployments, details and comparisons between Cisco Unified Wireless Network (CUWN), Converged Access, Mobility Express, private-cloud deployments (FlexConnect) and public-cloud based networks (Meraki). We will look at the key building blocks of all solutions, including licensing and management, as well as where it fits best in your network (campus, branch offices, managed services for small enterprises), and compare them with other Wireless LAN vendors’ offerings on the market. We will also be highlighting some key advanced features of the Cisco Wireless solutions, and showcase use cases where each architecture has its own place.