Community Troubleshooting from the Cloud


Half 3 of the four-part collection – Cloud Monitoring for Cisco Catalyst Switches

Welcome again to the third weblog in our collection about cloud monitoring for Cisco Catalyst 9000 switches.

My final weblog was about community visibility by way of the Meraki dashboard. On this weblog, we’re going to take it a step additional and speak about how cloud monitoring on your Catalyst switches will assist with community troubleshooting.

I labored in buyer assist again within the day.

Most of our calls went one thing like this: “Hello, that is Pat, I can’t entry my recordsdata” or “My web isn’t working.” Traditional, proper?

Talking of basic, listed here are some typical approaches to troubleshooting Pat’s downside:

  • Prime-down: Dig by way of each display and each administration console you’ve obtained
  • Backside-up: The identical as above, however beginning with the person
  • Divide and conquer: All palms on deck; cut up out your administration consoles and areas of the community
  • Comply with the trail: The place did it come from and the place is it going?
  • Spot the variations: Take a very long time to look by way of logs to see when you can collect sufficient data
  • Transfer the issue: Pat known as again and stated they’re related—no downside and now not MY downside! Kick that difficulty down the highway as a future me downside.

Whether or not you’re feeling nostalgic or breaking into a chilly sweat like me, there’s a greater means!

GIF by Peter Draws
Determine 1. GIF by Peter Attracts

How a few extra fashionable strategy that features:

  • A unified group view
  • Occasion logging
  • Community well being standing
  • Packet captures
  • CLI present instructions

Go refill your espresso and take a fast Meraki dashboard troubleshooting journey with me.

Unified Community View

Meraki dashboard
Determine 2. Organizational Abstract within the Meraki dashboard

The BEST view within the dashboard is the organizational abstract. This can be a fast option to see your complete org—not simply community—from one display, trying on the general well being. It’s really easy to see the place an issue could also be and get to it instantly. Relatively than flipping between administration interfaces and networks, you will get to the foundation trigger nearly instantly, from anyplace in your org.

Occasion Logging

Whereas we don’t take pleasure in occasion storms and getting notifications each second of day by day, it’s good to log in to your dashboard occasion and be capable to have a look at occasions and add notifications when you’d like. I’m a fewer-is-better type of gal myself.

Meraki dashboard
Determine 3. Occasion logging within the Meraki dashboard

Our event-logging display makes it simple to navigate and seek for occasions by gadget or networking {hardware}. You may even embody and ignore occasion sorts.

Community Well being Standing

My favourite web page particular to switches is the brand new overview—one standing web page to rule all of them!

Determine 4. Community topology within the Meraki dashboard

If we wish to get to a network-level difficulty, we are able to get there from the organizational alerts web page or from the community topology. That monitored swap, whereas it’s not having a severe difficulty, reveals as yellow. Let’s see why it’s sad.

As simple as one click on, right here’s the offender:

Determine 5. VLAN mismatch within the Meraki dashboard

We all know VLAN mismatches aren’t an enormous deal, however with a single click on you’ll be able to see the problem, and yet one more click on will get you to documentation that reveals how one can simply repair it. Shameless plug: If this swap have been Meraki managed, you’d see a hyperlink that asks when you’d like to repair it. Click on the hyperlink and it’s mounted. Machine studying for the win!

One other of my favourite new dashboard choices is the Switching Overview web page:

Determine 6. Switching overview within the Meraki dashboard

That is nonetheless from a community degree and reveals you the standing of your entire switches, alerts, purchasers on the switches, occasions, Energy over Ethernet (PoE)/information utilization, and swap port data.

Packet Seize

It’s nearly right here—packet seize on your Catalyst switches! I don’t suppose I have to inform you how packet seize works and helps diagnose community points, however I can present you a screenshot of how one can set it up:

Meraki dashboard
Determine 7. Packet seize within the Meraki dashboard

For switches, the next choices can be found:

  • Change: Choose the swap to run the seize on
  • Ports: Choose the ports to run the seize on
  • Output: Choose how the seize ought to be displayed: view output or obtain .pcap
  • Verbosity: Choose the extent of packet seize
  • Ignore: Optionally ignore capturing broadcast/multicast visitors
  • Filter expressions: Apply a seize filter

CLI Present Instructions

No context switching or administration console altering to troubleshoot points? You’re welcome. Command-line interface (CLI) reveals instructions through the Meraki dashboard which can be an effective way to allow distant validation of configuration and troubleshooting, with out having to get direct entry to the gadget through Safe Shell Protocol (SSH) or console.

Meraki dashboard
Determine 8. CLI present instructions within the Meraki dashboard

Curiosity Piqued?

Take a look at our easy-to-follow onboarding documentation. All the performance I’ve talked about on this submit is both already launched or coming shortly, so onboard your switches quickly to make the most of all this troubleshooting goodness.

For those who’re a Cisco Prime buyer who’s transferring away from Prime however not fairly prepared for full cloud administration, it is a nice option to get your toes moist with an introduction to cloud operations by way of your Cisco DNA licenses related together with your Catalyst switches.