What is most valuable?
The features we see and use the most are the SD-WAN, auto failover for dual ISP connections, auto failover for our VPN connections and the bandwidth monitoring are the main features. Alerting and monitoring are the next feature we see as being very beneficial.
How has it helped my organization?
As the only network admin in the company, I have to monitor nine remote sites (production and shipping facilities) and 12 remote VPN connections from various smaller facilities. Each location is a processing facility, which, when in season, runs 24 x 7 for the duration they are in production. During this time frame, not having a tech support person on site to fix problems is a huge cost savings for us. I see problems usually before they are large enough to need someone on site and with the cloud services I can remotely control ports, firewall connections and equipment online. Meraki products are very solid and seem to work in harsh environments very well.
What needs improvement?
I do wish you could control some ports locally from a console, but this is not the case. The only thing you can control locally is the uplink ports.
For how long have I used the solution?
We have been using Meraki network switches and firewalls for 3.5 years and they work very well.
What do I think about the stability of the solution?
We haven’t had any stability problems. These MX-64, MX-84 and MX-100 devices are very durable and seem to work well in harsh environments. Our environment is fresh vegetable processing and shipping warehouses with coolers.
What do I think about the scalability of the solution?
We have not encountered any problems with scalability. We started with 1 Mx-64, migrated to MX-84, then straight up to 2x MX-100 in a high availability configuration. We started out with 100 devices and now we are 430 devices with dual Fiber WAN connections and it runs very smoothly. We currently just integrated a MS-425-32 port 10GB network switch and it works very well.
How is customer service and technical support?
We have had no technical support problems that could not be resolved, between our Meraki rep and their tech support services. Being available 24 hours it's very nice to have that kind of service and support.
Which solutions did we use previously?
We used to be an HPE shop. I pulled out all that equipment, and installed Meraki switches and firewalls. It’s been so nice. I have visibility into the network, as well as remote links.
How was the initial setup?
Like any new equipment or networking gear, it did take a bit of time to learn the ins and outs and limitations of the Meraki gear. It’s not the Cisco CLI console that I was used to, so it was different to learn.
What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?
Well, you get what you pay for. If you want good products that work well and are easy to configure, as well as remote control, you have to weigh the pricing options. Is it worth the extra few bucks? I think so. Meraki comes with a limited lifetime warranty and they will replace the failed unit overnight if one fails.
Which other solutions did I evaluate?
We tried several other firewalls, such as SonicWall NSA, Cisco ASA, pfSense, Juniper, and Untangled. We found the Meraki firewalls to be the best fit.
What other advice do I have?
Make sure you have your network planned out, mapped out and you can see exactly where you need the devices installed. Get a Meraki rep to assist you in the device selection and implementation. Also, try before you buy.
Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
Jun 29 2017