How to Create Your First Cisco Meraki Network

Using the Meraki Dashboard

In our last article we reviewed how to set up your first Cisco Meraki account, which would gain you access to the Meraki dashboard.

Now, you can create your first Meraki network by following these easy steps:

Step 1: Name your network in the Meraki dashboard. Note that this name will be used by default as the name for your first SSID, but can always be changed later.

Step 2: Under the network configuration section, you have to add access points to your network. You can use your order numbers or serial numbers for your access points.

Step 3: Double check that the address is correct, showing where the network will be located.

Step 4: Hit create.

Note to ernterprise network administrators: If you are setting up a Meraki network, enter your license key, which can be found in the email you received, then hit create network.

A Successfully Cisco Meraki Network Install

You have now successfully created your first network. You’ll see the name of the network in the drop down menus above Meraki test network. If you created multiple networks, they will all appear in this drop down as well. For example, following the instructions in the How to Create a New Cisco Meraki Account blog article, you would see “Successfully added access points.”

If you haven’t plugged in and connected your APs yet, they will be shown in a grey color. When you actually install the APs and they connect to an active Internet connection, they will download their configuration file automatically. This will tell them which network they belong to, and they’ll pop up as green, showing that they have good connectivity to the Cloud Controller and are online.

We highly recommend that you drag and drop these onto a Google Map. Or upload a custom floor plan to replace the access points.

Meraki Dashboard Tabs

Next you can review the components of the dashboard.

There are three main tabs:

  • Monitor
  • Configure
  • Help

If you click on the Monitor tab, this is where you can monitor usage of the network, access point health, and client usage. You’ll also find items like Detailed Event Logging, Rogue Access Points Detection, and all of the reporting capabilities in the Meraki Dashboard.

Configure is where you can setup the SSIDs. If you click on Configure Overview, you will see an overview of your SSIDs. You can create up to 15 uniquely configurable SSIDs.

To configure an SSID, go to Access Control. This is where you can setup authentication, bandwidth limits, and how the clients are going to get their IP addresses. Also found under configure are Traffic Shaping Policies, Radio Settings, Group Policies, and Alerts that you can configure as well.

Finally, under the Help tab, you can find a searchable knowledge base. If you get stuck and can’t find the answer you are looking for, you can give your Team One Solutions rep a call and he or she can help with your Meraki Dashboard issues.

Posted in Cisco Meraki

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