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Cisco Meraki

Using the Bulk Network Creation Tool

Typically, new Dashboard networks are created so different deployments can have different configurations. However, there may be circumstances where it is ideal to deploy multiple networks with an identical or similar configuration. For example, an MSP may have a retail customer with a similar MX at each site. For these cases, the bulk network creation tool exists for quick and easy deployment of multiple networks at once, based on an existing network or template.

This article outlines the bulk network creation tool, and how it can be used to easily create and deploy multiple similar networks.

Overview

The bulk network creation tool is designed for use by administrators who oversee/deploy multiple networks, and is enabled by having at least one configuration template in Dashboard. Once enabled, the tool can be found in Dashboard under Organization > Configure > Bulk network creation, where the following options are available:

  • Source configuration: Determines which network or template will be used as the base configuration.
    • Default: New networks will use the default, initial Dashboard configuration.
    • Copy settings from <network name>: New networks will use the same configuration as the selected network.
    • Bind to template <template name>: New networks will be bound to an existing template.
  • CSV import: Upload a .csv file containing information about the new networks, including (at minimum) device serial numbers and their associated network name. Additional information can be included to pre-configure the new networks.
    For an example, click Sample import file to download a .csv file providing the appropriate information and format.

Supported Fields in a CSV File

The following fields are supported within the .csv file:

Network name - Assigns a name to the dashboard network to be created.

Serial - The Serial Number of the device to be claimed.

Network tags - Adds the specified tags to the dashboard network. Multiple tags can be separated by spaces.

Name - Assigns a name to the device.

Tags - Assigns tags to the device.

Address - Specifies the location of the device in the dashboard.

Notes - Adds any notes to the device in the dashboard.

Static IP - Configures a static IP for the device.

Netmask - Configures the subnet mask for the static IP.

Gateway - Configures the corresponding gateway for the static IP.

DNS1 - Configures the primary DNS server for the device.

DNS2 - Configures the secondary DNS server for the device.

VLAN - Configures a VLAN tag for the static IP.

Note: If the "Static IP" field in the .csv file is left blank, the devices will use their DHCP IP. These fields are not supported on MX/Z-series devices.

Creating MX HA Pairs in Bulk

The bulk network creation tool can be used to create networks with two MXes in a High-Availability (HA) pair, using a .CSV file as outlined above.

If the CSV contains multiple MX serial numbers associated with the same network name, the bulk creation tool will add both MXes to that network. The first MX appliance in the list will become the primary MX in that network, and the second appliance will become the spare. Please note that MX pairs added this way will always default to using their uplink IPs; a virtual IP for the pair must be configured on the network itself.

Creating Multiple Networks

Note: The bulk network creation tool can create one type of network (MX, MR, etc.) per use, combined networks cannot be created using this tool. Once multiple network types have been created, they can then be combined.

The following instructions outline how to use the bulk network creator to create multiple networks at once:

  1. In Dashboard, navigate to Organization > Configure > Bulk network creation.
  2. If desired, select the source network or template on which these new networks will be based.
  3. Import a .csv file containing the appropriate information, as outlined above.

     
  4. Select Create networks to finish the creation process.
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