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Cisco Meraki

Cloud Monitoring Overview and FAQ

What is Cloud Monitoring?

Cloud monitoring for Catalyst provides an integrated view of Catalyst 9000 series switches, seamlessly integrated into the Meraki dashboard experience.

Cloud monitoring provides the ability to view Catalyst switch statistics, configuration, and troubleshooting capabilities. These switches will be automatically tagged with “Monitor Only” in the dashboard to distinguish from fully managed Meraki switches. Aside from this difference, “Monitor Only” Catalyst switches appear and function very similarly to Meraki MS switches in the dashboard, including a visual representation of connected ports and traffic information.

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Live troubleshooting tools are also available to assist with issue identification and resolution.

What Cloud Monitoring is Not

Cloud monitoring does not replace other management solutions for configuration of switches. As a monitoring tool, most operations are read-only. All live troubleshooting capabilities will also not result in persistent changes to configuration following the troubleshooting operation.

In general, Catalyst switches connected to the Meraki dashboard for cloud monitoring provide a similar interface to that provided for MS switches. However, not all functionality or operations are exactly the same.

 

Summary Tab

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Switch ports and client usage information are available on the Summary page. On the left side, the Catalyst serial number is shown. The Meraki serial number will not be present outside of the Meraki dashboard or on the hardware itself.

The running iOS-XE version is shown under “firmware” on the left side. Current supported versions are 17.3.x - 17.7.x. Recommended version information can be found at: https://www.cisco.com/c/en/us/support/docs/switches/catalyst-9300-series-switches/214814-recommended-releases-for-catalyst-9200-9.html.

CAVEAT: DNA Essentials license

If a DNA Essentials license is in use, client-level traffic analytics are not available. This will be reflected with the banner:

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Switch Port Details

Port traffic and configuration can be seen for each port. The configuration summary is shown as well. Note that the configuration shown is a subset of settings on the port. There may be additional configuration settings on the Catalyst switch itself that are not shown here.

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Port Configuration

The port configuration section in the dashboard includes the most common configuration options. However, there are additional available configuration options within the CLI on the Catalyst switch that will not be reflected here. If there is no section for the relevant configuration, a feature request can be submitted.

There is currently a known issue with ports with “switch port mode dynamic auto.” This is the default and will not be visible to the user in most cases. Trunk ports that are dynamically detected are shown incorrectly as access ports in the dashboard.

The explicit configuration for trunk ports “switch port mode trunk” can be added to the interface configuration by the user to ensure the port shows as a trunk port.

Client State or Client Info

Current clients

Clients connected via layer 2 to this port will display VLAN, IP address, and MAC address information. Automated hostname detection is not yet supported.

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Port Troubleshooting Tools

Cycle port

This is a potentially disruptive operation and is equivalent to the “shutdown” and “no shutdown” commands applied in sequence on a Catalyst switch port. This can be useful diagnostically, but please be aware that this may cause traffic disruption on the port, including but not limited to spanning tree reconvergence, depending on the design and topology of the network.

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Multiple ports can also be cycled at once via the Tools tab.

It is not recommended to cycle the uplink port, as that can cause device connectivity issues with the dashboard.

Packet Counters

Counters are shown displaying the packet statistics from each port. This is similar to the information shown with the “show interface” iOS CLI command.

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Location Tab

Topology

Catalyst switches are integrated into the Meraki dashboard topology for the network. Layer 2 topology is currently supported.

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Map

The physical location of the switch can be viewed and modified. 

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Tools Tab

Live troubleshooting tools are available here.

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Ping

Initiates a ping from the switch and displays the results visually to see latency over time.

MAC forwarding table

Displays the MAC addresses of clients learned via layer 2 interfaces, including the associated VLAN and physical port number.

Switch ports page

This functions similarly to MS switches. The name of each port comes from the abbreviated interface name from iOS-XE (e.g. Gi1/0/1 for GigabitEthernet1/0/1). If a description is included in the configuration on the CLI, this will be shown as well.

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Switch Stack Page

Switch stack names are shown. By clicking on a name, the switches within the stack will be shown.

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Client Info Page

Client information is available on the client information page. If a DNA Essentials license is in use, a banner will display to show this.

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CAVEAT: Catalyst 9500 series switches will not send application data to the dashboard due to hardware limitations.

Clients connected via a cloud-monitoring switch with a DNA Advantage license will be able to include client-level traffic analytics if enabled: https://documentation.meraki.com/MS/Monitoring_and_Reporting/Switch_Traffic_Analytics#Network-wide_.3E_Monitor_.3E_Traffic_Analytics.

Known Issues/Caveats for Dashboard Monitoring

Client analytic data information is not shown

  • Client-specific traffic analytic information requires a DNA Advantage license on the switch

  • Catalyst 9500 series switches do not support client analytics, regardless of license

  • Mixing and matching license levels will cause unexpected behavior

Total traffic utilization does not include some clients

  • Clients connected to switches using a DNA Essentials license will not be included in the total amount shown

Dynamic auto trunk ports shown as access ports

  • Ports not explicitly configured as trunk ports but carrying multiple VLANs will be shown as access ports in the dashboard. To resolve, the port should include the added configuration “switchport mode trunk.”

  • Host name detection is not currently available.

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