As the need for company connectivity grows, so does the need for more devices, cloud environments, bandwidth-heavy applications, etc. Fortunately, cloud network management allows businesses to easily scale and optimize their network.
But not all network management solutions have the same capabilities.
Cisco Meraki management stands out as the best cloud-based network management solution because it combines cutting-edge devices and powerful, easy-to-manage software. The Cisco Meraki suite provides businesses a simple, efficient way to configure and oversee their network’s security, with the ability to scale as their connectivity needs expand.
What Is Meraki Management (Meraki Systems Manager)?
Meraki management (also known as Meraki Systems Manager or Meraki MDM) is a centralized, simplified, and user-friendly application that grants visibility into and control over all network-connected endpoints.
Meraki MDM is managed remotely in a secure environment over the cloud, which enables system administrators to:
- Allow BYOD policies.
- Collaborate without sacrificing security or compliance protocols.
- Provision, monitor, and secure devices based on pre-defined, customizable rules.
- Automate rule enforcement.
In other words, Meraki’s systems manager grants you ultimate power over mobile device management.
Meraki Systems Manager Key Capabilities
When looking into an MDM, you want to know its key capabilities right from the start. With Meraki management, you can:
- Manage and monitor endpoint devices by:
- Enforcing endpoint-specific restrictions
- Applying network-based configurations
- Utilizing security certificates
- Monitoring and alerting for any status change
- Manage and distribute applications by:
- Delivering applications to the correct devices based on tagging
- Loading and distributing apps from the cloud
- Provisioning and managing licenses
- Apply and investigate security status across all devices by requiring:
- Specific applications to load and run across all devices
- Minimum operating system levels
- Device check-in
- Password locks
- None to be jailbroken
- Enabled firewalls
What Are the Benefits of Meraki Management?
Let’s review four of the major Meraki benefits you’ll get with its cloud network management.
1. Centralized Oversight and Analysis
One of the top reasons Meraki management is the best cloud-based network solution is because administrators can easily oversee their end-to-end network infrastructure through the Meraki management dashboard. As you add Meraki devices, ranging from security cameras to access points, you can seamlessly configure them with one-touch provisioning—all from the dashboard.
Within this platform, you can remotely perform the following actions across multiple devices and locations:
- Make changes
- Apply configurations
- Troubleshoot issues
To get the most out of the dashboard, businesses should take advantage of the full range of the Meraki suite, including Insight. With Insight, IT administrators can monitor performance to provide a better user experience and tackle troubleshooting issues faster. When paired with a collector like a Meraki MX firewall, Insight provides in-depth reporting and network management tools across your Meraki ecosystem.
Similarly, Meraki System Manager is a robust and easy–to–use Mobile Device Management solution that integrates with your Meraki network.
- Supports BYOD
- Provides administrators with visibility and control over all endpoint devices
- Enforces security policies
- Tracks lost or compromised devices
- Manages employee onboarding
- Integrates with authentication tools
- Creates an audit trail
2. Endpoint Device Security
Mitigating potential security breaches, Meraki management lets you remotely leverage security profiles to verify end users, send notifications, and remote wipe.
You can also constantly monitor for a myriad of compliance checks and get alerts of any violations. If there is a security breach, the system manager can automatically revoke credentials and add or remove apps and profiles based on status.
For maximum security and data protection compliance, the controlled device update process is automatic and seamless.
3. A Wide Range of Cutting-Edge Devices
In addition to being easy to manage, Meraki has a wide range of products with cutting-edge technology you can mix and match to suit your needs.
For example, Meraki’s new MR46 and MR56 access points are WiFi 6 compatible, which means, among other benefits, these access points can accommodate faster speeds, particularly in dense environments.
Other Meraki devices such as security cameras also include top-quality technology, not only in terms of video recording capabilities but in providing insights like customer traffic volume at different times of the day.
All of these devices can work together to provide your business with a fast, secure, reliable network that’s easy to manage and scale.
4. Ongoing Services
Stratus Information Systems understands that not all IT departments are managed the same way. While the Meraki system manager is ideal for self-managed organizations, we’re here to assist in any capacity through our ongoing services.
- Our specialists are happy to give you a pre-sales project consultation on network design to ensure you get optimal network speeds and efficiencies without overspending.
- Stratus’ project management team can remotely administrate, troubleshoot, and assist with your network deployment, including cabling services, hardware installation, and configuration, all with minimal impact on your employees.
- Our certified Cisco engineers can educate and walk you through your new network, whether you require one-time assistance or ongoing support.
Why Meraki Systems Manager Should Be Your Cloud Network Management Solution
Cisco Meraki management revolutionizes modern networking by allowing your organization to control wireless devices, even those that aren’t located on-site. It utilizes the Meraki cloud architecture as its backbone. Here’s how:
- Meraki’s “cloud” is a collection of highly reliable, multi-tenant servers strategically distributed in data centers around the world.
- Meraki doesn’t store customer user data—it replicates the data across independent same-region centers. It also automatically performs archival backups hosted by in-region third-party cloud storage services.
- These data centers undergo daily penetration testing by an independent third party, meet a 99.99% uptime service level agreement, and ensure all sensitive data is hashed on servers. Meraki’s data centers hold PCI, SAS70 Type II/SSAE, and ISO27001 certifications.
- Meraki uses an event-driven remote procedure call (RPC) engine for devices to communicate with the MDM dashboard, allowing for configurations to be executed in the cloud before the devices are online or physically deployed.
- When it comes to configuration containers, they are updated and pushed to the device via a secure connection. These containers also update to account for failover and redundancy.
- The management system then leverages a proprietary lightweight encrypted tunnel using AES256, HTTPS, and protocol buffers for a secure and efficient Meraki solution.
- With the Meraki dashboard, you get a visual alternative to the traditional command line. The dashboard manages routers, switches, security devices, and much more—all in one place using a simple format. You can also perform the following tasks from the dashboard:
- View network analytics.
- Apply network permissions.
- Keep track of users.
- See camera streams.
- Manage users’ mobile devices and computers.
- Set content rules.
- Monitor upstream connections.
Other reasons you should be using Meraki systems manager as your cloud network management solutions are because it:
- Provides open API accessibility to leverage the power of the cloud platform on a deeper level that creates a more robust, more efficient Meraki solution
- Enables a high-availability (HA) architecture in many ways (data center uplink, Meraki server, data center backup, and disaster recovery plan) to provide high serviceability
- Segregates server data, network and management data, and user assets to maintain security across the board
- Retains network usage data to build easily searchable and referenceable data
- Is committed to the highest hardware, software, physical, and operational security to maintain privacy integrity
See Which Devices Can Take Your Network to the Next Level
Stratus Information Systems can help you design, consult on, and deploy a Cisco Meraki management network solution that’s tailored specifically to your organization’s needs and budget.
Here are three actions to take today to simplify your network management:
- Learn more about Meraki products in our Cisco Meraki Comparison Guides.
- Contact us for a free dashboard demo.
- Request a customized quote from one of our experts.