We intend to use this community thread to provide ongoing updates on Meraki’s IPv6 journey and bring further transparency on the IPv6 status for Cisco Meraki products. Firstly, we want to acknowledge the clear gap in supporting IPv6 across the Meraki portfolio and sincerely understand the frustration that’s been expressed by community members and our customers.
Each Cisco Meraki product has a different set of IPv6 requirements and technical complexities. IPv6 is not a single feature, but rather a suite of features and capabilities that need to be enabled as a journey; which, unfortunately, is not a quick undertaking especially since we need to solve for effective management of IPv6 functionality in addition to enabling IPv6 data plane capabilities.
It is important to note that currently shipping Cisco Meraki hardware platforms are IPv6-capable. Our primary objective is to deliver IPv6 in a phased manner that is as simple and streamlined as possible to adopt, for our existing and future customers. IPv6 is one of our strategic cross-product initiatives and this is backed by engineering resources we have aligned to it.
We do not have publicly-shareable specifics yet, however we are committed to providing ongoing updates on our progress on this thread as well as other communication channels. Expect the next update by the end of September 2019.
Thank you for your continued partnership,
The Cisco Meraki team
This thread will be used for updates from the Meraki team, so we are limiting the replies here to just Meraki personnel. Hence the "lock" icon on the thread.
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As mentioned in our previous update, we are committed to providing ongoing updates regarding the efforts and progress around IPv6 at Cisco Meraki. While we have no additional product roadmap updates to communicate at this time, we would like to share with the community that Meraki continues to accelerate our IPv6 investments and grow our engineering team to include top IPv6 talent. We recently brought on board a group of engineers comprised of leading experts who have IPv6 design and implementation expertise, coupled with practical and operational experience. This core team joined from Cisco’s Paris Innovation and Research Lab alongside Mark Townsley, a Cisco Fellow with many years of experience tackling IPv4 exhaustion challenges, developing IPv6 transition technologies, a leader and major advocate for IPv6 deployments across the industry.
Continuing our mission of simplifying powerful technologies, our aim with IPv6 is to not only provide basic functionality, but to solve key challenges that are preventing wider adoption of IPv6 in the enterprise by making IPv6 truly “Meraki simple”. To this end, we have been engaging with customers and gaining additional insights into wishes, expectations, and aspirations for the Meraki IPv6 implementation.
We will continue to use this community thread as the vehicle of communication of our IPv6 progress. Expect the next update to come in the first half of December 2019.
The Cisco Meraki Team
In the last update, we mentioned the addition of leading IPv6 experts to the Meraki team in order to help with development and rollout of IPv6. We have made progress since then, and want to use this update to share some of this with the community.
No product at Meraki is complete without our Dashboard and the Cloud that supports it. Over the past few months, we have been diligently enabling IPv6 across our entire Global Cloud Infrastructure, taking care not to disrupt service for a single customer while doing so. At the time of this post, we are over the halfway mark, with more than 50% of all of our Cloud ready to use IPv6. Our next step will be to add AAAA records to Meraki domain names, including the “front door” - dashboard.meraki.com. Sometime after the holiday break and before our next update, you should see AAAA records appear, disappear, and (assuming all went well) reappear permanently similar to how major websites around the world did for the World IPv6 Day.
We are not enabling IPv6 on our cloud only for the Dashboard web service though, we are also preparing for managing Meraki devices over IPv6. Assuming the rollout continues to go as well as it has, we will begin using IPv6 for our management traffic to the Meraki cloud as well. We will do this very carefully, working initially with customers that already have IPv6 on their MR and MS platforms before moving to the rest of the Meraki product line.
Why this initial focus on our own infrastructure? Simple. We believe it is important for us to have hands-on experience with IPv6 across the entire Meraki organization. This way, as we incorporate IPv6 into our platform as well as our products, we will be better positioned to provide the best experience possible for Meraki customers. To do that, we need to eat our own dogfood by using IPv6 not only for our day-to-day work and product development, but within our most critical infrastructure as well.
As we continue to make progress across our infrastructure and products, we will continue to update the community here. Please expect the next update in February 2020 (and keep on the lookout for our AAAAs!).
The Cisco Meraki Team
During our last update, we reported that we were in the process of enabling IPv6 in our Cloud and that we would soon begin advertising IPv6 reachability for dashboard.meraki.com. In late January, we orchestrated our own mini IPv6 Day by enabling and disabling an IPv6 AAAA record in the global Domain Name System. As expected, we witnessed a number of our customers using IPv6 to reach the Meraki Dashboard. Since then we went through another iteration of enabling and disabling AAAA as we continued to roll out and test IPv6 across our infrastructure and applications.
We also reported in our last update that we were about 50% finished with the upgrade to IPv6 in our Cloud in order to support dashboard.meraki.com permanently. We are pleased to mention that this IPv6 deployment is now 100% complete and AAAA records for dashboard.meraki.com should remain indefinitely. We are progressing on IPv6 for our other services as well, one domain name you can check out with IPv6 today is icmp.canireachthe.net which is used by our devices and live tools.
This is still the beginning of our journey and there is still quite a bit more work to be done in order to support IPv6 across all Meraki products and services. Our goal is for all of our Cloud services to be available over IPv6 in preparation for management of devices that are connected via IPv6-only rather than dual-stack. In parallel to our infrastructure work, we are developing IPv6 functionality in our products and are very excited to start making some of this functionality available to the community for beta testing over the coming months. Our next update will be in April, and if things go according to plan, we should have some exciting news to report.
Thank you for your continued patience and partnership on this journey!
The Cisco Meraki Team
We know that VPN connectivity is of utmost importance to our customers right now and those of you with dual-stack connectivity at your home or wherever you are working from right now would prefer to use IPv6 as much as possible and that the MX is still a barrier to that. Also, as many of you know, a number of mobile carriers around the world have moved to IPv6-only service with IPv4 provided via a NAT64 function. If our Client VPN solution does not work through the ISP’s NAT64 translator, it is not only a barrier to using IPv6, it is a barrier to the VPN service itself if the client has no IPv4 to call back to. As such, we have prioritized testing of our latest Client VPN implementation on the MX, and happy to report that it works on IPv6-Only mobile networks including T-Mobile in the US, EE in the UK and Rogers in Canada. Not all NAT64’s are the same and we haven’t had a chance to test with every combination of mobile client and ISP, but we hope that the successful results of these few ISPs indicate that it will work in other IPv6 plus NAT64 combinations.
If you already opt-in for beta features on the MX today, you should either already have or automatically get this new capability without any additional configuration. If you have not been part of our beta features program and would like to join, please follow the instructions in the Managing Firmware Upgrades KB. Remember to select MX 15.27 or the latest available beta code version of MX 15. While our aim remains full IPv6 support on the MX, NAT64 still has to work well. We hope providing this will help in the near-term while we continue our journey towards IPv6.
The Cisco Meraki Team