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How Smart is your Network Device?

At Cisco, we are all about changing the customer experience and building intelligence into the network.  One way we have done this is by making our devices smarter. 

A prime example is our Adaptive Security Appliance (ASA).  When it encounters a critical unrecoverable error condition, it reloads itself and then automatically sends in the error report.  This report is analyzed by Cisco and compared against all known issues.  If Cisco has seen this issue before, we will:

  • Alert the customer via e-mail that their device encountered a problem
  • Include the bug ID and Headline of the problem the device experienced
  • Indicate what versions contain a fix to this issue

This provides you with everything you need to know about the problem.


(click to enlarge)

How is that for Smart?

Did I happen to mention that all of this is fully automated and happens in 3 minutes or less?

The ASA also detects other error conditions, these (ie: fan failures, interface failures, other environmental alerts, etc…) and securely reports those back to Cisco. For critical events, we will automatically open a TAC case and start working on the problem. That may be initiating an RMA and shipping the part on-site, or it could be that a TAC engineer will call you to alert you to the problem and what the next steps are. For non-critical events, you will receive an e-mail to alert you to the problem and include guidance on the next steps.

In addition to this, we are investing in big data initiatives to mine the data being sent in and obtain insights on how we can better improve our software quality, or to quickly be alerted to any critical issue affecting multiple customers - all in an automated fashion.

Find out how to enable SCH on the ASA  here. You can also check out the Smart Call Home Support Forums Community, and see Cisco's full list of Smart enabled devices.

This article is featured in the August 2013 issue of the  Cisco TS Newsletter.  Are you subscribed?