Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Cisco Meraki Announces New MX Security Appliance Features

Hot on the heels of announcing new features for their MS switches, Cisco Meraki has just announced new functionality for their MX Security Appliances.  The new features will be distributed to existing MX users via Meraki's summer firmware update.

New MX Features include:

  • Datacenter failover
  • Warm spare failover
  • 1:Many NAT
  • Geo-based IP firewall rules

Build More Stable Networks

Datacenter failover is a new feature for Meraki's MX series that could be critical if you manage multiple branch sites that tunnel back to datacenters.  Branch tunneling is already available with the MX using AutoVPN, secure branch connections can be made through MXs set up elsewhere.  Now you can set up failover sites meaning you can specify which hub each branch will automatically failover to.

The Meraki MX can run in two different modes, NAT mode or Passthrough or VPN concentrator mode.  While running in NAT mode, the MX can now be configured with a warm spare failover function.  This means more stable networks; more uptime.

More Flexible Addressing

Cisco Meraki's MX line already supports 1:1 NAT (Network Address Translation) but with this update, they will now be capable of 1:Many NAT enabling mapping between any public IP and multiple unique internal IP addresses and ports.

Geographic Security

It is now possible to see the geographic location of the origin or destination of traffic on your network.  Because of this, it is now also possible to restrict traffic to and from certain locations.  If you want to keep all traffic from a certain country off your network or if you want all of your traffic to stay solely within US borders, you can easily make those modifications.

Cisco Meraki continues to improve their network solutions.  We will have more on these upgrades and improvements in the future.  For more information, visit us at CopperWifi.com

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Ubiquiti Networks UniFi Controller (3.2.1) - Adding Custom Maps (video)

Today we have another video up on the CopperWiFi.com YouTube channel.  This time it's a quick walkthrough on how to add a custom map to you UniFi controller.  John shows us the simple process, step-by-step.

As always, comments and questions are welcome, either here or on YouTube.  Thanks for watching!

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Ubiquiti UniFi Controller (3.2.1) - Initial Setup and Installation (video)

Need help setting up your Ubiquiti UniFi AP?  John is back (this time without Meeka) to show a quick walkthrough of setup and installation of a UniFi AP on the controller using UniFi version 3.2.1.

John shows where to download the software and the simple installation process including how to find the AP on the controller and set up a guest network in a less than five minute video.  He used a Mac Mini for our walkthrough.

If you have any questions at all or just want to say hi, post them in the comments either here or on the YouTube page.  Don't forget to subscribe to CopperWiFi.com on YouTube!

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Cisco Meraki Announces New MS Switch Features

Cisco Meraki has announced several new features for their MS line of switches.  All of the new features are available for the MS320 and MS420 families of switches and some are available for the MS220 family.  The new features will come to existing customers via the upcoming summer firmware update.  We'll go over them briefly in this blog post.

New Features 

New functionality for all of Cisco Meraki's MS switches include:
  • IPv4 Access Control Lists (ACLs)
  • IPv6 visibility and tracking
New functionality for the MS320 and MS420 switch families include:
  • Open Shortest Path First (OSPF) dynamic routing
  • Virtual Router Redundancy Protocol (VRRP) support
  • DHCP server

Redundancy and Availability

The need for increased uptime has lead to the demand for warm failover options.  VRRP support enables MS320 and MS420 switches to make use of a warm spare.  Basically, if a switch goes offline for some reason, the VRRP can seamlessly route traffic through the spare switch, minimizing network downtime.

Both switches will handle layer 2 traffic during normal operation with the primary switch handling layer 3 traffic.  The switches will share a virtual IP address so that if the primary has a disruption and the change is made to the spare switch, other devices on the network will not need to change addresses as the spare takes over the layer 3 responsibilities.

OSPF dynamic routing and DHCP service address other potential network failures.  OSPF dynamic routing ensures that the network can re-route traffic around a blocked pathway when possible.  DHCP service can address the failure of an existing DHCP server.

Large Deployments and Distributed Sites

As we continue to add complexity to our networks to accommodate the ever expanding numbers and types of devices we need to serve, we have new security and management needs.

Support for IPv4 Access Control Lists is now available on all of Cisco Meraki's MS switches.  This allows the switch to filter and control traffic on the network without a separate firewall.  The switch will now be able to:
  • Prevent communication between hosts on different network subnets
  • Restrict access to internal resources by clients on a guest network
  • Prevent Internet access for certain hosts
  • Ensure that only clients using proper protocols and ports have access to internal servers
  • Prevent use of undesirable protocols and services
If you would like more information about Cisco Meraki MS switches, you can visit us at CopperWiFi.com.