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MX100 fan noise

SOLVED
Conversationalist

MX100 fan noise

Hey Community,

 

I have a customer with an MX100, recently deployed, which its fans are extremely loud (to the point where even within the closed cabinet, we can hear it from a few meters away).

It doesn't have too much traffic in it yet, as the customer hasn't moved its employees to the new site.

 

Its running firmware v13.33.

 

I`ve asked meraki what should be the expected dB level for the fan, but I didnt get a response. 

Has anyone experienced this issue with this Model?

 

HTH,
Camillo
1 ACCEPTED SOLUTION

Accepted Solutions
Kind of a big deal

Re: MX100 fan noise

I've only used MX100 in computer rooms and DC's, and its noise blended into everything else (so wasn't particularly noticeable).

22 REPLIES 22
Getting noticed

Re: MX100 fan noise

known characteristic with some switch models.

 

They cranked the speed of the fans up to resolve overheating issues. Not sure if this was carried into the MX100. 

Kind of a big deal

Re: MX100 fan noise

I've only used MX100 in computer rooms and DC's, and its noise blended into everything else (so wasn't particularly noticeable).

Conversationalist

Re: MX100 fan noise

I did measure our DC dB levels and they were on par with what the appliance sounded.

Thanks!

HTH,
Camillo
Here to help

Re: MX100 fan noise

We just deployed an MX100 in our facility and it strikes me that the fans have run at one speed from the moment it POSTed. Can anyone confirm that this is normal behavior?

 

I don't recall any other Meraki hardware, or like appliance, behaving this way. I expect the fans to run at full speed during boot, and then throttle down during normal operation. I ran the MX outside of the rack on a cool, flat, surface for 2 hours before installing it into the rack. The fans have only run at one speed the entire time.

 

We have an MS120-48P in the rack that is practically silent. The MX100 is screaming loud. Thoughts? 

Kind of a big deal

Re: MX100 fan noise

The MX100 is definately much louder than an MS120.

Here to help

Re: MX100 fan noise

Thank Philip. In your experience, does the MX 100 operate as I described above, i.e. fans spin at same speed during boot up as normal operation? 

 

It's almost inconceivable to me that this device operates this way. I literally don't think I've heard anything this loud for what it is. Very frustrating that nobody at Meraki can provide me with high/low fan noise in dB let alons tell me if the fans operate at one speed of multiple speeds. 

 

 

Getting noticed

Re: MX100 fan noise

Just got the same complaint from a client that just installed one...

Highlighted
Getting noticed

Re: MX100 fan noise

To follow up my post, customer took a video and we opened a case, they RMA'd the MX100 and the new one is just as loud as the old one. The response from support:

 

It looks like this is an expected behavior then for MX100.

The customer is pissed, now asking to send the box back and go with another vendor...

Building a reputation

Re: MX100 fan noise

Is your customer sitting right next to the device? From my point of view, MX100 is a device that will be installed in a 19" rack in a dedicated server room / data center. Of course it has got fans that are producing noise but as @PhilipDAth said: it will simply blend in to the sound of the other devices located there.

Have you checked if "lower end" device without fans (linke MX67/68) would suffice?
Getting noticed

Re: MX100 fan noise

It is in their data closet, but can be heard from 15 feet away. This is not a DC and to say putting it in a DC fixes the issue in not a helpful response. They need to 100 due to the bandwidth requirements.

 

We have never had this issue with any lower model

Kind of a big deal

Re: MX100 fan noise

MX84 can be loud as well. The 60 line doesn't have an actual fan in them, which is why they are quiet. Once you get into something meant to be chucked in a rack away from people, it's going to be louder because it's going to have actual fans.

 

It's unfortunate that your client finds that too loud. You said it's inside a closet. What's the temp in that closet? Is it possible to add sound absorbing material without mucking up the airflow? 

Building a reputation

Re: MX100 fan noise

Just wondering: which competitor would build a device that would suffice your actual requirements and not include fans / make some noise?

Getting noticed

Re: MX100 fan noise

Just spun up an 84 in my office, no noise whatsoever...

 

I've let the client know they can downgrade (and lose bandwidth) or we can look at a Firepower 1120, but I have no idea if it has the same loud fan issue, plus they would lose all the simplification of the current Meraki environment.

 

We prefer to stick with Cisco products

Building a reputation

Re: MX100 fan noise

You really think Firepower will be more silent? It's rated as "31.7 dBA @ 25C, 56.8 dBA at highest system performance" (https://www.cisco.com/c/en/us/products/collateral/security/firepower-1000-series/datasheet-c78-74246...).

Unfortunately, Meraki doesn't include noise in their datasheet but as @Nash said: as long as you're going 19", it's going to make some noise. It really depends in temperature levels then...
Here to help

Re: MX100 fan noise

First, there are absolutely comparable firewalls that produce less sound. We replaced an SonicWall NSA 3600 with the MX100 and it was noticeably louder in a fully ventilated rack. NSA 3600 is a much more capable device and was running Comprehensive Gateway Security. This is actually what prompted me to post on this thread. Based on my description of the sound Meraki suggested a proactive RMA. The replacement device sounded exactly the same. I have never heard the fans run at a different speed. From the moment it POSTs to normal operation the noise is the same or similar.




Kind of a big deal

Re: MX100 fan noise

>First, there are absolutely comparable firewalls that produce less sound.

 

Of all the questions customers have asked me over the last 20 years - no one has ever asked about how much noise their firewall will make.  It is not a concern for the vast majority of users, and I doubt Meraki will make any product adjustments - especially in the MX100 family.  These are more of a DC level appliance rather than for use in an office.

Kind of a big deal

Re: MX100 fan noise

What about using an accoustically dampened rack?

 

Do they perhaps have a roof space a small wall mount cabinet could go into?

 

What about a room that might contain other services, like an elevator or air conditioning service room?

 

Do they perhaps have a store room?

Here to help

Re: MX100 fan noise

Really? The MX100 is pretty far from an enterprise class product. I don't know what you qualify as a datacenter but in a city like New York where high speed fiber is ubiquitous we have plenty of branches offices where MX100 in a small wall-mount rack in an equipment closet is not uncommon. 

 

My objections are: a) this appliance generates a tremendous amount of noise relative to competitive products. Considering the spec I expect the MX100 to be in small branches more than I do in an HQ's data center. b) Cisco Meraki does not publish spec on sound like you would expect from Cisco general.

Getting noticed

Re: MX100 fan noise

Our rep got a hold of me regarding this, and it's the first he's heard of it. They are working on coming up with a solution to make the customer happy so we'll see.

 

Does anyone know if the 250's have this issue?

Here to help

Re: MX100 fan noise

We recently installed 2 x MX250 configured for warm spare failover. They are racked in consecutive rack spaces in sound proof MDF. The MDF contains 6 racks so there is quite a bit of noise now, but the MX's were installed before anything else and I don't recall them standing out to me as inordinately loud. I also recall that they POST with the fans on full speed and then throttle down unlike the MX100 which just seems to run at one speed all the time. 

cmr
A model citizen

Re: MX100 fan noise

Indeed the MX100s are in my opinion faulty, the fans needlessly run at full speed even in low temperatures.  I think that either the firmware must be broken and failing to regulate the fans, or perhaps the hardware is actually faulty.  Does anyone remember if they ever worked like the MX84s and MX250s where the fans operate at an appropriate speed once booted?

Building a reputation

Re: MX100 fan noise

I agree, the MX100s are WAY too loud. I had bought a set for a portable rig and regretted it. What's funny is the MX400 isn't anywhere near as loud. When I was setting up the MX100s in my basement, I could hear them on the second floor!
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