What Will Happen to Meraki Device if License Expired?

Mobile Device Management
July 3, 2024

Cisco Meraki is a popular choice for businesses looking for robust and scalable network solutions. Known for its cloud-based management and user-friendly dashboard, Meraki simplifies network administration while offering advanced features for security and performance. However, a critical component of using Meraki devices is maintaining active licenses. Without a valid license, the functionality and support of these devices can be significantly affected.

Understanding what happens when a Meraki license expires is crucial for network administrators and IT professionals. This article will explore the implications of license expiration, the available grace period, steps to take if your license expires, and preventive measures to avoid licensing issues. By the end of this article, you will have a clear understanding of how to manage Meraki licenses effectively and ensure continuous network performance.

What Happens When a Meraki License Expires?

What Is Cisco Meraki?

When a Meraki license expires, the immediate impact is the loss of cloud management capabilities via the Meraki dashboard. This means administrators can no longer make configuration changes or monitor the network through the cloud interface. Active devices will continue to function with their last known settings, but any attempt to access the Meraki dashboard will be blocked until the license is renewed.

Moreover, network security is compromised with an expired license. Features such as firewall rules, VPN configurations, and wireless access controls may become outdated, leaving the network vulnerable to potential threats. Individual device shutdowns can occur if proper licensing is not maintained, affecting the entire network’s performance and reliability.

Meraki License Expiration Grace Period

Fortunately, Cisco Meraki offers a 30-day grace period after a license expires. During this time, the network devices continue to operate as usual, providing administrators with a buffer to renew the licenses without immediate disruption. This grace period is essential for maintaining network stability while addressing licensing issues.

However, it’s important to note that the 30-day grace period is not a solution but a temporary measure. Failing to renew the license within this period will result in the suspension of cloud management capabilities and potential network security risks. Ensuring timely license renewals is crucial to avoid interruptions and maintain the overall health of the network.

Steps to Take if Your Meraki License Expires

Step 1: Identify Affected Devices and Current License Status

Log into the Meraki dashboard and navigate to the Organization > License Info section. Here, you can see detailed information about each device’s license status, including expiration dates and the number of devices affected.

Step 2: Contact Cisco Meraki Support

If your license has expired, reach out to Cisco Meraki support for assistance. They can provide guidance on the renewal process, discuss options tailored to your needs, and help resolve any immediate issues.

Step 3: Initiate the License Renewal Process

Choose the appropriate license type for your devices. Cisco Meraki offers several options, such as device-specific licenses or the co-termination licensing model, which aligns all licenses to a single expiration date. Consider your organization’s needs and budget when selecting the best option.

Step 4: Review License Limit and Costs

Check the license limit count to ensure you have the correct number of licenses for your active devices. Evaluate the cost implications of renewing your licenses and budget accordingly to avoid future expiration issues.

Step 5: Complete the Renewal Transaction

Follow the steps provided by Cisco Meraki to complete the renewal transaction. This might include purchasing the licenses online or through a Cisco Meraki partner. Ensure that all necessary information is provided and the transaction is completed promptly.

Step 6: Update the Meraki Dashboard

After renewing your licenses, update the Meraki dashboard with the new license keys. This step ensures that all devices are covered and operational. The dashboard will reflect the new expiration dates and overall license status.

Preventive Measures to Avoid License Expiration

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  • Set Up License Expiration Alerts

Configure alerts in the Meraki dashboard to notify you well in advance of upcoming license expirations. These alerts can be set up to send reminders via email or other communication channels.

  • Maintain an Inventory of Active Licenses

Keep a detailed record of all active licenses, including their expiration dates and the devices they cover. Regularly update this inventory to reflect any changes, such as new device additions or license renewals.

  • Regularly Review License Status

Periodically check the Meraki dashboard to review the status of your licenses. This proactive approach helps identify any licenses nearing expiration and allows for timely renewals.

  • Integrate License Management into IT Maintenance Schedule

Include license management as a regular part of your IT maintenance routine. Scheduling regular reviews and renewals can prevent last-minute rushes and ensure continuous network operation.

  • Budget for License Renewals

Allocate a portion of your IT budget specifically for license renewals. Planning financial resources in advance helps avoid unexpected expenses and ensures that funds are available when needed.

  • Train IT Staff on License Management

Ensure that all relevant IT staff are knowledgeable about the importance of license management and the steps to take to avoid expiration. Training helps create a culture of proactive management and reduces the risk of lapses.

Wrapping It Up

Proper licensing is the backbone of maintaining an efficient and secure network with Cisco Meraki devices. Knowing what happens when a Meraki license expires, understanding the 30-day grace period, and taking prompt action can save your organization from significant disruptions. The ability to manage licenses proactively not only ensures continuous network performance but also fortifies your network against security vulnerabilities.

By implementing preventive measures, you can avoid last-minute surprises. A well-managed licensing strategy provides ultimate flexibility and peace of mind, allowing your business to focus on growth and innovation. Don’t let a simple oversight compromise your entire network—stay ahead of the curve with proper license management and safeguard your organization’s digital infrastructure.

FAQs

  1. Can a Meraki device function without a license?

While basic operations will continue, the device’s full functionality and features will not be unlocked until a valid license is applied. Cloud management and advanced security features will be inaccessible without a valid license.

  1. What happens to data on expired devices?

Data on expired devices remains intact, but access to cloud management and configuration changes will be restricted until the license is renewed.

  1. What is the co-termination licensing model?

The co-termination licensing model aligns all device licenses to a single expiration date, simplifying renewal processes and administrative tasks.

  1. What are the consequences of using a network device without a valid license?

Using a network device without a valid license can lead to reduced functionality, security vulnerabilities, and loss of cloud management capabilities.

  1. Can I extend the Meraki license expiration grace period?

The standard grace period is 30 days. Extensions are typically not available, so it’s crucial to renew licenses within this timeframe to avoid disruptions.

  1. How does license renewal affect the entire organization?

Renewing licenses under the co-termination model can streamline management by synchronizing expiration dates across all devices, reducing administrative burden and ensuring consistent network performance.

  1. What should I do if I encounter licensing issues?

Contact Cisco Meraki support for assistance with any licensing issues. They can provide guidance and solutions to ensure your network remains operational and secure.