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Cisco Meraki Documentation

FAQs: Migrate to Meraki management mode

We are excited to share eligible Catalyst 9300 switches can now be migrated to Meraki management mode. This migration release marks an important milestone in delivering Cisco's promise of investment protection. Our goal is to meet our customers where they are and offer more choices as they embark on a cloud journey. Whether it’s a hybrid cloud journey with cloud monitoring capabilities or an accelerated path to the cloud through this migration program, we aim to provide options that cater to our customer’s needs. Once migrated to the Meraki cloud management mode, the centralized Meraki dashboard can help you streamline remote network management, such as provisioning, port configuration, and security policy, all without added complexity.  Ready to unlock flexibility and control at the cloud scale today? Read this Quick Start Guide and learn the process. 

Before Migration

Migration is available for the following C9300 models

24 port models C9300-24P, C9300-24T, C9300-24U, C9300-24UX, C9300X-24HX, C9300L-24T-4X, C9300L-24P-4X, C9300L-24UXG-4X
48 port models C9300-48P, C9300-48T, C9300-48U, C9300-48UN, C9300-48UXM, C9300X-48TX, C9300X-48HX, C9300X-48HXN, C9300L-48T-4X, C9300L-48P-4X, C9300L-48PF-4X, C9300L-48UXG-4X
Fiber models C9300-24S, C9300-48S, C9300X-12Y, C9300X-24Y

The following network modules are compatible with the migration process. 

C9300-NM C9300-NM-2Q, C9300-NM-8X, C9300-NM-2Y*
C9300X-NM C9300X-NM-2C, C9300X-NM-8Y
C3850-NM C3850-NM-2-40G, C3850-NM-4-10G, C3850-NM-8-10G

Additionally, Meraki modules MA-MOD-2X40G, MA-MOD-4X10G and MA-MOD-8X10G are also compatible with migrating C9300 switches. Please refer to this Getting Start documentation for details. 

When will migration to Meraki management mode be available to the Catalyst C9300 customers?

This migration program is now available on eligible devices. Read this Quick Start Guide and learn about the benefits and process. 

Please contact your Cisco account team to learn more about suitability. 

The migration process requires the switch to go through a factory reset, which requires the device’s configuration to be erased and all file systems on the device or connected to it (USB drives) to be reformatted.  Be sure to download a copy of your files! 

There are some differences such as LEDs, Console port, and SSD, please refer to this documentation and learn more: LED indicators in the Meraki-managed mode

If I already have DNAC essential/advantage licenses, do I need to purchase another license to use the Meraki dashboard today?

Once your devices are migrated to the Meraki dashboard, there are two ways you can obtain a
Meraki license: 1) Migrate an existing DNA license through the promotion page or 2) purchase a new Meraki license. 

Please see page 4 of this quick migration guide and learn how to migrate your DNA license.

No, once the switch is in Meraki management mode, there will be no console access. However, hardware/boot level output can still be monitored via the console port for troubleshooting HW/Stack/boot failures(read-only). The recommended option is to use the local status page via the management interface for troubleshooting and cloud connectivity issues.

The Meraki experience is about simplicity and an end-to-end experience that can help customers solve their network management needs at scale. Our goal is use case parity.  Over time, both Catalyst Center and Meraki will have parity for the most important use cases. We will be very thoughtful in delivering powerful solutions without adding complexity. 

During Migration

While this is not a frictionless process, we worked to minimize complexity as much as possible.  Please refer to this quick start guide for the process, or simply contact the Meraki support team, who will gladly assist you. 

Please contact the Meraki support team if you encounter any issues during or after migration.  


After Migration

If you wish to migrate your Cisco Catalyst 9300 switches from the Meraki management mode to DNA management mode, please contact Meraki support. You'll need to open a PO for a DNA license, but you can RMA your Meraki license and receive a credit for the purchase of the DNA license. Please note that this will reset the switch to its factory default settings and erase all configurations. 

Please contact the Meraki support team if you encounter any issues during or after migration. 

Firmware updates

Once the C9300 has migrated to Meraki management mode, it can be added to a Dashboard network running cloud-managed Catalyst Switch firmware version, CS 15.21.1 or newer. The CS firmware will be automatically installed on your migrated C9300 switches based on the Dashboard network’s firmware configuration.

For future firmware updates for your Catalyst-based switching, please check out the article in Documentation for step-by-step instructions.  And don’t forget to use our staged upgrades and firmware upgrade status features to help you save time and effort. You can schedule, stage, or sequence update groups ahead of time and reuse these groups. 

When a new firmware version is available, you will be notified via the dashboard news feed or subscript to Meraki Community to receive relevant announcements in your inbox. 

RMA:  What management mode will a replacement unit be in? 

After migrating to Meraki management mode, please contact Meraki Support for assistance.

Please note, if an RMA is done for a migrated Cisco Catalyst 9300 Switch, the replacement will come in the management mode for which the unit was originally purchased. This differs from CW access points where the replacement will be the same mode as when the case was opened. 

Other technical details

Yes, but it includes additional code/configuration to enable integration with and management by the dashboard. In fact, if a C9300 in Meraki management mode is migrated back to DNA mode, you will need to upgrade the software to an IOS-XE version that is supported in DNA management mode. 

A Meraki-managed C9300 switch stack can have up to eight stacking-capable switches connected through their StackWise-480 ports. Like a regular C9300, only homogenous stacking is supported, that is, a stack of Meraki-managed Cisco Catalyst 9300 Series Switches with only Meraki-managed Cisco Catalyst 9300 Series Switches as stack members. 

StackPower is supported in a ring topology supporting up to 4 switches. 

For a mix of Meraki and Meraki-managed Catalyst switching environments, virtual stacking is a great tool to support thousands of switch ports in a single logical stack for unified management, monitoring, and configuration.

At Meraki, we take a thoughtful approach to network security, with a wide range of tools and features to protect users and applications without complexity. Some of the examples are: 

  • Encrypted Traffic Analytics (ETA) on our Meraki-managed C9300 switches and MS390 switches. Please refer to the documentation for details. 

  • Scalable security policy: Create an additional layer of access security based on the intent of the user, device, and application using Adaptive Policy.

  • Cisco Trustworthy Solutions:

    • Trust Anchor: A tamper-resistant chip in Cisco products that provides secure storage and crypto services

    • Secure Boot: Ensures code in hardware is authentic while protecting Cisco devices from non-compliant software

    • Image Signing: Creates a unique signature and encryption for code using a Cisco private key

    • Runtime Defenses: Makes it impossible for attackers to exploit running software by targeting malicious code

Will IOS-XE API-driven configs stay the same? NECONF, RESTCONF, GNMI / YANG data models 

No, IOS-XE API will not work in the Meraki management mode. Meraki, however, offers a rich set of Dashboard APIs ( to programmatically manage your Catalyst switches.

No, since the Meraki dashboard is cloud-managed, users will be able to remotely monitor, schedule, or update software in bulk or in stages via the dashboard. Please see this documentation page for more information. 

Yes, NBAR2 is enabled by default and cannot be disabled on all MS390 and C9300 on Meraki management mode. Please see this documentation page for more information. 


With the powerful and intuitive Meraki cloud dashboard, your network team can scale, control, and secure distributed networks effectively, without a steep learning curve. 

Here are some example capabilities you can leverage today:  

  • Centralized visibility and control of your network and application recognition; better-understanding devices and their dependencies with dynamic network topology diagram 

  • Faster MTTR with real-time health monitoring, proactive alerts, guided actions, and powerful remote troubleshooting capabilities such as remote PCAP, cable testing, cycle port, and reboot devices.  

  • Create an additional layer of access security based on the intent of the user, device, and application using Adaptive Policy

  • Set up multiple policies and enable them at the port level or across the entire network in a few clicks 

  • Find malicious traffic, defend against threats, and experience full visibility across the network with Encrypted Traffic Analytics

  • Defend against threats and keep infrastructure always up to date; review, schedule, stage and update firmware from an intuitive dashboard or automate with the API

  • Centralized cloud-managed experience across all Meraki product lines from security to IOT 

With the power of Cloud, we will be able to continuously deliver more useful and powerful value and capabilities right on the web-based dashboard to enable your network team to do more with less. Most importantly, deliver the innovation responsibly and effectively without impacting your operations and end-user experiences. 

We have this short 30 minutes free training to walk you through some of the ideal use cases and problems you can solve with the Meraki dashboard. 

Find answers, ask questions, and connect with a community of cloud-management aficionados from around the world:

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