WIRELESS ASSURANCE USING CISCO DIGITAL NETWORK ARCHITECTURE CENTER (DNAC)

Technology 

The Cisco Digital Network Architecture Center (DNAC) platform assures businesses that their  intentions translate directly to their enterprise networks. The platform provides a centralised  GUI that clearly displays insightful analytical and telemetry data. This enables network  operators to proactively monitor thousands of network devices from a single point, predict  behaviour and performance, and troubleshoot issues.

Challenge 

Our customer wanted to leverage Cisco DNAC to assure their wireless device and  client operations across globally distributed sites. It was deemed unacceptable that  wireless issues were taking longer to troubleshoot and resolve than wired issues.

Furthermore, with the proliferation of wireless devices in use by their workforce due to BYOD  (Bring Your Own Device) and IoT (Internet of Things), it was deemed important that wireless  users should have the same connectivity and performance experience of their wired  counterparts.

Solution 

By using DNAC as a centralized assurance platform, Metsi was able to deliver  several benefits to our customer. First, wireless LAN controllers (WLC) and all their  associated Access Points (APs) were added to the global site dashboard, so it would be apparent exactly where any issues were occurring. Second, the Network Health  assurance dashboard was used to proactively identify APs that were down or unable to  communicate with a WLC, APs that were facing oversaturation from a high connected client  count, and APs that were experiencing high interference.

Finally, the Global Issues section was consulted in order to focus on high priority wireless  client onboarding issues due to: WLC or AAA server, security parameter mismatches, DHCP  timeouts, client or radio frequency (RF) issues, client exclusion or roaming. The Client and  Device 360 feature was employed to examine up to fourteen days of historical data for  specific APs and Wi-Fi clients having issues. This gave insights into reasons for Wi-Fi  onboarding or performance issues such as, high signal to noise ratios (SNR) or poor received  signal strength indicators (RSSI) which could then be solved to improve client experience

Summary 

Metsi provides network consultancy for the design and implementation of the Cisco  DNAC platform, for Proof of Concepts (POC) and real-world rollouts, in both greenfield and brownfield deployments. Metsi DNAC engineers can facilitate the  realization of all DNAC features for enterprise customers, including all areas of  assurance. DNAC assurance provides new insights to ensure that business intent is directly  transferred to the network.

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