Cisco Meraki Cloud-managed Access Points
Cisco's Meraki family of indoor and outdoor Wi-Fi access points includes entry-level 802.11n devices for home and small office use as well as Wave 1 and Wave 2 802.11ac APs capable of handling high-density environments that demand world-class performance, security and scale. The signature feature of Meraki's access points is cloud management accessible via a browser-based dashboard and able to monitor and control virtually unlimited APs across multiple sites. The centralized Meraki dashboard enables not only streamlined provisioning and 24x7 monitoring but also provides a wealth of analytics such as asset tracking and application management to help organizations maximize the value of their Wi-Fi ecosystems.
Meraki's dashboard lets you manage all your sites and upload multiple floor plans with AP layouts
Progent's Cisco-certified wireless networking consultants can provide online or onsite expertise to help you design, deploy, manage, expand, upgrade, and troubleshoot Wi-Fi solutions based on Meraki access points and can help you create converged networks of any size that provide seamless, location-independent access, advanced security and consistent performance to all your clients whether they use wired or wireless network connections. Progent also offers affordable online and onsite wireless site surveys to help you design and install a Wi-Fi network with custom-designed access point clustering optimized for your specific office layout, building structure, and application workloads.
Cisco Meraki Indoor Wi-Fi Access Points
Cisco's family of Meraki dual-band 2.4/5 GHz indoor access points range from value-priced models for general use to enterprise-class devices that offer up to 2.5 Gbit/sec performance. All Meraki indoor access points feature next-generation capabilities such as self-configuring plug-and-play deployment, advanced security, BYOD support, built-in analytics, automatic over-the-web updates, and centralized cloud management for multiple sites. Each Meraki indoor access point also includes two high-power client-serving radios with enhanced receive sensitivity plus a dedicated intrusion detection and prevention system (WIDS/WIPS) security radio that provides RF analysis and deep packet inspection at line rate.
Other features of the Meraki family of indoor access points include a Gigabit Ethernet port, 802.3af PoE compatibility, hardware-accelerated encryption, wireless IPs, self-healing zero-configuration mesh routing, cloud-based location analytics, one-click secure guest access with a guest isolation firewall, customizable splash pages, an integrated policy firewall for granular group or device-based access control, built-in antivirus scan (NAC), WPA2-Enterprise authentication with 802.1X and native Active Directory integration, Layer 7 traffic shaping for prioritizing or restricting various classes of applications, plus MIMO and integrated beam forming to support high density environments while preserving range.
Cisco's Meraki MR18 is a wall or desktop mountable 802.11n access point that can deliver speeds as high as 600 Mbps with its two concurrent 2x2:2 MIMO radios. This entry-level access point is value-priced and designed for general-purpose use in moderately dense environments. The Meraki MR32 is a wall, ceiling or desktop mountable wireless AP with a 5 GHz 2x2:2 802.11ac radio and a 2.4 GHz 2x2:2 802.11n radio, offering a maximum dual–radio aggregate frame rate of 1.2 Gbit/s. This access point includes a low-power Bluetooth radio for Beacon and BLE scanning and is intended for high-density campus, retail, and enterprise environments.
The Cisco Meraki MR42 is an 802.11ac Wave 2 access point for performance-critical and/or high-density wireless LANs. The MR42 supports 3×3:3 MU-MIMO with beamforming, delivers a maximum data rate of 1.9 Gbit/sec, includes a Gigabit Ethernet port, and has an integrated Bluetooth radio that provides scanning and Beaconing. The Cisco Meraki MR52 is a high-performance Wave 2 802.11ac AP designed for high density campus and enterprise environments. The 4-radio MR52 offers 4×4 MU-MIMO with four spatial streams and beamforming, handles over-the-air data rates of up to 2.5 Gbps, supports 160 MHz channels, includes two GE Ethernet LAN interfaces, and features a Bluetooth radio. Cisco's Meraki MR53 AP has the same specs as the Meraki MR52 but has a single GE Ethernet LAN port plus a 2.5 Gbps Multigigabit Ethernet port.
Cisco's Meraki MR30H is a wall switch access point designed for hotel rooms or dormitory environments and features 2x2 MU-MIMO 802.11ac Wave 2 support, an integrated 4-port gigabit Ethernet switch, and an integrated Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) radio for beacon and scanning functionality. The MR30H provides up to 1.3 Gbps aggregate throughput with concurrent 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz radios. The Meraki MR33 is a general-purpose access point suitable for offices, schools, hospitals, shops and other busy environments. The MR33 has the same feature set as the MR30H access point but is packaged in a low-profile enclosure and lacks the integrated 4-port Gbit Ethernet switch.
The Meraki MR34, which has reached end-of-life status, is a 3x3 MIMO 802.11ac access point with 1.75 Gbps throughput. Designed for very high density applications, the MR34 offers 802.af PoE (low-power mode) and 802.3at PoE+ and does not include Bluetooth.
Cisco Meraki Cloud-managed Outdoor/Industrial Wi-Fi Access Points
Cisco's Meraki outdoor and industrial access points are IP67 rated, designed to operate in harsh outdoor environments, and tested for dust, shock, vibration and moisture. Meraki outdoor access points include a Gigabit Ethernet port and offer advanced features that include cloud management with network-wide visibility and control, 802.1X and native Active Directory integration, built-in antivirus scan (NAC), 1-click secure guest access and guest isolation firewall, application-aware traffic shaping, plus self-configuring mesh with MIMO and beamforming.
Cisco's Meraki MR62 is a value-priced, single-radio 802.11n outdoor AP that offers 300 Mbit/sec performance and features a single-radio mesh and VPN tunneling for teleworkers. The mid-range Meraki MR66 has dual-concurrent radios with band steering, delivers 600 Mbit/sec max rate performance, and features 2x2 MIMO, beamforming, and multi-radio mesh. The high-capacity Meraki MR72 is a three-radio access point that supports data rates as high as 1.2 Gbps with concurrent 802.11ac and 802.11n 2x2:2 MIMO radios. A separate third radio is dedicated to WIDS/WIPS security and automated RF optimization. The MR72 also incorporates a Bluetooth low energy (BLE) radio to provide Beacon functionality and BLE device scanning. The ultra-fast Meraki MR84 is a 4-radio outdoor AP designed to handle any difficult, high-density RF environment such as a stadium, an arena, or any outdoor venue. The MR84 includes 4×4:4 MU-MIMO support, 160 MHz channels, a 1 Gbit Ethernet port and a Multigigabit Ethernet port, and an integrated BLE radio.
Meraki's Cloud-based Wireless Management Solution
Meraki access points include the CPU, memory and architectural resources needed to perform packet processing, QoS, layer 3-7 security, encryption and other functions at the network edge while at the same time supporting Meraki's cloud management infrastructure. Meraki's cloud-hosted management provides centralized control over a virtually unlimited number of sites and devices via a single web-accessible dashboard with features that include layer 7 device and application visibility, performance and connection monitoring and alerts, extensive reporting, live diagnostics for remote troubleshooting, automatic updates, and enterprise-class security.
Every Meraki access point can connect over the Internet to the datacenters that constitute Meraki's cloud using a highly compressed out-of-band management tunnel that typically requires less than 1 kbps overhead per device, resulting in no perceptible drop in performance. Because no network data such as browsing or internal applications pass through the Meraki cloud, end-user functionally continues even if the cloud connection is lost.
Meraki's cloud-based management eliminates the need for wireless controllers or overlay systems
A key feature of Meraki's cloud management solution is advanced traffic analysis and shaping technology that allows admins to understand user behavior and take advantage of this insight to optimize network value. Meraki’s traffic analytics engine enables the Meraki dashboard to provide visibility across all network layers so that admins can see the consolidated results of statistical analysis in a single view on a per-network, per-SSID, or per-user basis. Line-rate, flow-by-flow deep-packet inspection (DPI) of network traffic gives admins the information they need to create and apply application firewall and traffic rules for specified groups of users.
To maximize worker productivity or enhance customer engagement, Meraki’s traffic shaping engine lets administrators create time and context-dependent policies for QoS and prioritization based on user and network groups. Admins can define and enforce restrictive policies such as application firewalling or throttling and can also prioritize bandwidth availability for specified application classes. Meraki’s application-layer analysis is performed at the network edge, eliminating the cost and complexity of deploying and managing traditional wireless controllers within the network core.
Other cloud-managed features supported by all Meraki Wi-Fi access points include Meraki's Air Marshal wireless intrusion detection system (WIDS) and wireless intrusion prevention system (WIPS) for neutralizing wireless threats plus CMX Location Analytics for realtime analytics on the presence of Wi-Fi handhelds like smartphones, notebooks, and tablets. With Air Marshal activated, a dedicated security radio in the Meraki AP runs security scans on the 2.4GHz and 5GHz bands. Air Marshal responds to perceived threats based on specified policies. A cloud-based heuristics engine allows Air Marshall to detect security threats, transmit alarms, and propose remediation. Threats can include rogue SSIDs, access point spoofs, packet floods, and hack attacks on your Wi-Fi network. As an example of threat remediation, Air Marshal can automatically isolate access points spoofing your network’s SSID, preventing your users from connecting to a malicious rogue device.
Meraki's CMX Location Analytics system collects user presence data derived from the probe requests beaconing of WiFi-enabled devices including smart phones, tablets, and laptops. CMX uses this information to create graphic analysis of foot traffic by time of day, new vs. repeat visitors, and dwell time. This data can help organizations that utilize WiFi hotspots to optimize staffing, storefront design, or employee and BYOD policies.
How Progent's Consultants Can Help You with Cisco Meraki Access Points
Progent's Cisco-certified wireless networking experts offer online and onsite support services to help businesses of any size to design, deploy, maintain, expand or troubleshoot Wi-Fi networks that utilize Cisco Meraki wireless access points. Progent offers expertise to help you through occasional technical bottlenecks you may encounter, or Progent can provide comprehensive project management or co-management services to make sure critical IT initiatives are completed on schedule and on budget. Progent can help you set up and support Cisco Meraki-based Wi-Fi infrastructure for environments that range from individual telecommuters, small businesses or branch offices, all the way to large campuses and multi-site enterprises. Progent can also help you integrate other Cisco Meraki technology such as switches, and firewalls to create a cohesive ecosystem that provides identical connectivity, performance, security and availability for wired and wireless users regardless of their location, mobility or computing device. (See Cisco Meraki switches consulting.)
Progent's also offers wireless site surveys to help you choose and locate Cisco Meraki access points optimally to provide the coverage, throughput and capacity required to handle your wireless environment. Progent's data security experts can assist you to build and verify a Wi-Fi security solution that is compliant with government regulations, industry requirements, and your own internal standards. Progent's disaster recovery consultants and business continuity planning specialists can help you optimize the fault-tolerance and recoverability of your wireless infrastructure by implementing the high availability technology built into Cisco Meraki products and by following industry best practices.
For more information about Progent's wireless consulting services, refer to Progent's Wireless Network Consulting and Troubleshooting Support.
Contact Progent about Consulting Services for Cisco Meraki WiFi Access Points
To talk to Progent about consulting or troubleshooting support for Cisco Meraki wireless access points, call 1-800-993-9400 or visit Contact Progent.
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