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Cisco Cloud Services Router Competitors and Alternatives

Get our free report covering MikroTik, Juniper, Hewlett Packard Enterprise, and other competitors of Cisco Cloud Services Router. Updated: October 2021.
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Read reviews of Cisco Cloud Services Router competitors and alternatives

AH
Network Infrastructure Program Manager at a non-profit with 1,001-5,000 employees
Real User
Top 20
Good flexibility, capacity, and firewall throughput

Pros and Cons

  • "The flexibility of the MPLS configuration is very good."
  • "If you are setting up a site-to-site VPN between a Juniper and Cisco device then you may encounter some issues."

What is our primary use case?

The Juniper routers make up the backbone of networks for our customers. The majority of them are service providers, although some of them are enterprise-level organizations.

What is most valuable?

The most valuable feature is the capacity and throughput of the firewall. It is measure in terabytes.

The flexibility of the MPLS configuration is very good.

What needs improvement?

If you are setting up a site-to-site VPN between a Juniper and Cisco device then you may encounter some issues. Cisco devices need to use a GRE tunnel, which is not needed on Juniper devices. Juniper runs directly on it, and it is called a Secure Tunnel Interface.

The technical support varies by region and can be slightly improved.

For how long have I used the solution?

I have been using Juniper Enterprise Routers for around four years.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

These switches are very stable. I have some customers in banking and other industries in the Arab Gulf areas like the UAE, Dubai, and Saudi Arabia who have been running for more than ten years. Some of the devices need to be phased out, but they are still in production and stable.

As with any other product, you might find bugs. However, it is acceptable and can happen with any vendor. This is one of the crucial areas with Juniper because if you have OneTouch Service, the updates and bulletins are available.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

With respect to scalability, this is one of the best solutions that I have ever seen. I have been deploying solutions for ten years in the Arab Gulf areas like the UAE, Dubai, and Saudi Arabia.

How are customer service and technical support?

The quality of technical support depends on the region. For me, Cisco is number one in technical support, regardless of my preference for products from Palo Alto and Juniper, Cisco is number one in terms of response time and ticket tracking.

With respect to Juniper, I think that they might come in second.

Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

I have used similar solutions by Cisco and Palo Alto.

The Cisco technical support is superior.

How was the initial setup?

This solution is not difficult to deploy. I would say that it is straightforward. However, the first time somebody does it, they might find it difficult to deploy and configure. This is because they aren't familiar with it. When somebody has the proper training and hands-on experience, it is not that difficult.

If the high-level design and low-level design is in place, and the high availability deployment areas are ready, then it will take approximately two hours to deploy. This time includes production testing that avoids downtime, and we also consider the In-Service Software Upgrade (ISSU).

Where I am working now, it is very easy because we have all of the templates. It doesn't take much time. I can imagine that in some enterprise environments they take longer because they are lacking the technical hands, or the tools, or the templates.

What about the implementation team?

I have hands-on experience deploying this solution for our customers.

What other advice do I have?

Juniper is a leading company in MPLS technology and its equipment was one of the first ones that were ready for it. This is why juniper devices are often used by service providers, more so than Cisco devices. Juniper is one of the leaders in deploying the ISSU feature, although it now exists in Cisco and other solutions as well.

Certain Juniper models can be used only for the routing tables, which is important because in some cases, the routing table size is one of the factors.

My advice to anybody who is implementing this solution is to first have the proper training to help understand the product and all of its features. In most cases that I have seen, the company will order the device and are not aware of the features. They might have issues with sizing or getting the wrong product. Customers need to review the products in the context of their requirements and then build the high-level and low-level designs based on those requirements. Absolutely, you should not try to configure the device before completing the training because you need to take security into consideration.

Overall, this is a good device.

I would rate this solution a ten out of ten.

Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

On-premises
Disclosure: My company has a business relationship with this vendor other than being a customer: partner
DM
Sr. Network Engineer at a tech vendor with 11-50 employees
Real User
Top 20
Easy to set up, reliable, and has pretty good technical support

Pros and Cons

  • "They are the best in failover switches. Their product line is excellent."
  • "Depending on the customer, the initial setup could be complex."

What is our primary use case?

We primarily use the solution for the router. It could be H branches router, the MPLS router. or the border gateways router.

How has it helped my organization?

The routing aspect itself has improved the way our client's organizations are run.

What is most valuable?

We don't necessarily give a lot of interest to the various aspects of the solution as Cisco has dedicated devices for a bunch of features. That said, routing is in the running.

They are the best in failover switches. Their product line is excellent.

What needs improvement?

We don't really see any places where Cisco is lacking. They are quite reliable.

A specific client may have specific needs. There may be features they need that Cisco may not have. Each organization is unique in that sense.

It would be nice if Cisco had the capability for packet capture.

Depending on the customer, the initial setup could be complex.

Technical support could be slightly more responsive.

For how long have I used the solution?

We've used the solution for more than five years at this point. It's been a while.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

We've used other technologies that have given us issues, however, we've had very few problems with Cisco. It's quite a reliable product.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

Whether the solution scales well depends on the client and the model they've chosen to work with. Some customers have certain requirements and will need to work with certain models in order to get the scalability they desire.

We usually do some analysis and we only provide recommendations based on future goals or future requirements, instead of anything else. That way, we're prepared for an expansion.

We typically support small or medium companies. We don't typically deal with enterprise-level organizations. If we do deal with enterprises, it is only for support and not for implementation.

How are customer service and technical support?

I'm an engineer. I do my best not to call support. My job is to resolve issues to whatever I can do. I don't like relying on customer support, or support from the vendor. That's not appreciated from the customer side. What's the point of hiring an engineer, otherwise? That said, in the rare instances I do, they have always been very helpful. They are responsive and knowledgeable. I'm very satisfied with them so far. Overall, I would rate them at an eight out of ten.

They could slightly improve on their response time. However, sometimes the issue is that it is difficult to explain. I'm an engineer and I'm on the field, deploying and configuring. Tech support it's only resolving cases based on the database. They start looking for that in the database. Often, whatever recommendation they do, it's not that big of a fix as they just "find" the problem and I resolve it.

Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

While we tend to always recommend Cisco, if a client doesn't have the budget for the solution, they may choose something else.

How was the initial setup?

Our customers are mostly based in the UK. They are not that big. They're rather small companies. They don't require a complex deployment. Therefore, we didn't find the initial setup complex. For us, it was pretty straightforward.

What other advice do I have?

We're a Cisco partner.

We use the service cloud routers as well.

In terms of versions, the company has recently changed from IOS to XE. We're using the latest version of the solution.

We're deployed both on-premises and on private clouds. We deploy this for our clients, and therefore the deployment model depends on their requirements.

I'd recommend the solution. If a company decides to go with a Cisco router, they are making a wise decision.

In general, I would rate the solution at a nine out of ten.

Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

On-premises
Disclosure: My company has a business relationship with this vendor other than being a customer: Partner
Mahmoud Ghonem
Head Of Architecture Department at a educational organization with 501-1,000 employees
Real User
Top 20
Good connection but lacks scaling capabilities and technical support

Pros and Cons

  • "When we started, the connection was amazing for the 100G between the switches and the co-switch. What the students typically use for school is a maximum is 40 so they now have faster technology."
  • "In my country we don't have Huawei technology, we only have Huawei routers for ISP. There is no agent for Huawei in Egypt."

What is most valuable?

When we started, the connection was amazing for the 100G between the switches and the co-switch. What the students typically use for school is a maximum is 40 so they now have faster technology.

What needs improvement?

We've only been testing the solution for a month and our main concern is stability. We wanted to see if it's as stable as, for example, Cisco. So far, that has not been the case. The router recently failed on us, and we had to end the test.

In my country we don't have Huawei technology, we only have Huawei routers for ISP. There is no agent for Huawei in Egypt.

In the end, the router was incompatible with the bundles.

It's difficult to get the scalability right.

There's a gap between their online support and documentation.

For how long have I used the solution?

Currently, we've been testing the solution. We've been testing it for one month now.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

The stability ended up not being what we hoped, therefore, we reverted back to Cisco routers, which are much more stable.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

The scaling wasn't a smooth experience at all. If you need to scale the product, you'll run into issues.

We had about 2,000 users on the solution before we decided to switch to Cisco.

How are customer service and technical support?

In Egypt, there is no Huawei in the local market, and therefore there isn't any support.  You can only go through an Independent Service Provider. When you have issues, you need to connect to and ISP, and that can sometimes be difficult.

Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

We're a firm that handles multiple schools around the Middle East. Most of the schools use Cisco Solutions and FortiGate as a firewall. Therefore, we often use a variety of products, not just Huawei.

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

The price of the product is good and is quite a bit less than Cisco. I don't have exact pricing, however.

What other advice do I have?

We're simply a customer.

While we've tried the solution for a month, we're finding the stability isn't where we need it to be. Cisco is much more stable.

I would recommend the solution to others as it does offer good pricing. However, you need to have good support in your area. If you have a good technical person who can help you set up your network accurately and have access to good support, it might work out fine.

You also have to be careful not to overwhelm the router with users due to scalability issues. We have a school in the Gulf doing amazing however the school only needs to handle around 300 users we never hit full capacity in the first year of using it. We'll see if the hardware acts up after another year and possibly more users.  

On a scale from one to ten, I'd rate it at a six. My experience is slightly biased, as we don't have support in my country, so when we run into issues we tend to be on our own. However, if stability, support, and market availability come together, it has the potential to be a great product.

Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

On-premises
Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
EV
Conseiller en architecture technologique at a government with 1-10 employees
Real User
Top 5
Good routing and excellent third-party customer service, but extremely unstable

Pros and Cons

  • "The routing protocol is the solution's most valuable aspect."
  • "The solution is far too unstable. It's completely unreliable."

What is our primary use case?

We use the solution primarily for routing purposes.

What is most valuable?

The routing protocol is the solution's most valuable aspect.

What needs improvement?

Overall, we've had a lot of issues with the solution. It should operate more like Cisco's Nexus 9300. It needs a lot of work.

Due to the issues we've been having, we plan on replacing the device completely.

The solution is far too unstable. It's completely unreliable.

For how long have I used the solution?

I've only been using the solution for one year.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

There are a lot of stability issues. We have to replace the mini components. When we experienced those problems, the issue with components, we received new components. Even when we received the new components, they were also, I wouldn't say broken, however, they were not working properly.

We had to send back the devices and components, and, in fact, a motherboard. It seems like when companies send the components back, the company ends up just reselling them to other companies. Yet those components were not working properly, so this seems ill-advised. 

After all the issues, we decided to replace the core switches because we don't have any trust in them at all. 

How are customer service and technical support?

Technical support was actually supplied by a third party. We don't go directly to the company.

It's kind of network and I believe it's a Canadian company that supplies the services. They are a technical support company based in Montreal. 

I would say that we got really great support from them. We've been quite satisfied with their services.

I believe we pay extra to utilize the services. It's not included in the cost.

How was the initial setup?

We've had a lot of issues with the equipment in general. It's hard to say it's straightforward when so many things are going wrong.

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

I'm unsure of what the licensing costs are. Users will have to pay extra for technical support, however.

What other advice do I have?

We're just a customer. We don't have a special contract with the solution and we aren't a consultant or reseller.

My understanding is the company plans to replace this solution within the next six months as they've been unhappy with the performance of the solution.

I would advise other organizations not to purchase this solution. I really prefer Cisco products, which work much more effectively.

I'd rate the solution seven out of ten. It's not a terrible solution, however, our experience was very bad.

Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

On-premises
Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
CZ
Network Operations Specialists at a comms service provider with 501-1,000 employees
Real User
Top 5
A flexible and cost-effecting product with powerful scripting capability

Pros and Cons

  • "The wiki page that describes the scripting and other features is very good."
  • "Improvements are needed with respect to some of the security, especially for VPN links between vendors other than Cisco."

What is our primary use case?

We use this product as part of our network solution, but we also have customers in Cameroon that we have implemented it for. We design their systems at a low cost, implement them, and then provide training.

What is most valuable?

The most valuable feature is the flexibility within the advanced configuration.

IDS and IPS are very good.

The wiki page that describes the scripting and other features is very good. It is quite impressive for new users who want to learn about MikroTik.

What needs improvement?

Improvements are needed with respect to some of the security, especially for VPN links between vendors other than Cisco. For example, what works between MikroTik and Cisco does not work as well between MikroTik and Fortinet. I have seen some bugs.

The certification process should be improved.

Have localized or regional pricing would be an improvement.

I would like to see GPS tools embedded into the devices.

For how long have I used the solution?

I have been working with this product for seven years.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

This is a stable product.

How are customer service and technical support?

I do not generally contact technical support. I have had to do some reading on issues that I was having, and I have always been able to find a solution. I have never had the kind of problem that necessitated calling support.

Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

I have worked with solutions from Cisco, Juniper, and Fortinet. The type of project dictates which product works best in the environment.

How was the initial setup?

I find the initial setup to be easy. It may be more complex for people just getting started within MikroTik, although it should be straightforward even for junior engineers.

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

MikroTik is really cheap compared to the competitors. They are the cheapest ones in Cameroon except for Ubiquiti at the router level.

What other advice do I have?

This solution has improved a great deal over time and in many domains. They have hired experts from around the world, from vendors such as Cisco, to help improve the product. Some examples are scripting has improved, along with advanced routing techniques, and wireless device support. However, the biggest improvements are in cloud routers.

Normally, every two months at the maximum, new updates and firmware is released for the devices. It is really amazing. It is like the developers do not sleep at all. I am consistently impressed with how their technology is advancing.

Overall, this is a product that works well.

I would rate this solution a ten out of ten.

Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
Get our free report covering MikroTik, Juniper, Hewlett Packard Enterprise, and other competitors of Cisco Cloud Services Router. Updated: October 2021.
552,136 professionals have used our research since 2012.