November 28, 2023

Making the leap from Cisco Prime to Cisco Catalyst Center

Chris Day
Principal Consultant - Infrastructure Solutions at Data#3

While Cisco Prime Infrastructure was a reliable network management tool for its time, today’s network landscape demands a more sophisticated and simplified solution. After an impressive decade of service, Cisco has decided to sunset the product in October 2024 and focus on addressing the challenges of modern network management. This move highlights the importance of mastering Intent-Based Networking, Software Defined Networking, automation, AI/ML (AIOps), and data insights to deliver exceptional user experiences.

With Cisco Prime Infrastructure being phased out, many customers now face the challenge of identifying suitable alternatives to maintain uninterrupted business operations during the transition away from Prime. Cisco Catalyst Center, previously known as Cisco DNA Center, is the logical migration path for existing Cisco Prime customers.

Onward and upwards with Cisco Catalyst Center

As a centralised intent-based network management system, Cisco Catalyst Center takes over all the network management functions previously handled by Prime Infrastructure and extends them by offering an array of new and enhanced capabilities in network management, monitoring, AIOps, automation, and security.

From its management dashboard, Cisco Catalyst Center gives users complete control over every core function of the network. This includes automation and assurance, virtualisation, analytics, security, and IoT connectivity. Collectively, these innovative features offer numerous capabilities and advantages for businesses and IT teams:

Simplify IT operations

Centralise policies across multi-domains

Automated device provisioning

Enhance security capabilities

Migrating to Cisco Catalyst Center

Support for legacy devices

Cisco Catalyst Center is not limited to the newest Cisco Catalyst 9000 product family – it also supports legacy devices (541 to be precise), dating back to 2015. This means Cisco customers transitioning from the Prime Infrastructure to Cisco Catalyst Center can bring their SNMP-based devices with them.

Multiple deployment options

There are multiple current deployment options, with others being added:

Coexist or full migration

If you would like to gradually transition to Cisco Catalyst Center, it’s possible to co-exist between Prime Infrastructure and Cisco Catalyst Center. For those customers who choose to do a full migration, the Prime Data Migration Tool (PDMT) helps to simplify the process of migrating sites, devices, configuration, CLI templates, ISE, and CMX. Data#3 Cisco specialists can help you evaluate which is the best migration path for your organisation.

Are you ready to migrate?

Cisco Catalyst Center achieves what Prime no longer could. It simplifies complex IT network operations with proactive network management, consistent policies across wired and wireless, and cognitive analytics to correlate insights. In other words, it takes the grunt work out of managing even the most complex networks, at scale.

As Cisco sunsets its Cisco Prime Infrastructure, there’s an opportunity to level up your network management approach. Cisco Catalyst Center is the gateway to unlocking all kinds of new architectures (like Software Defined Access) and the efficiencies to manage them.

If you would like a demo of Cisco Catalyst Centre, or would like to speak to one of our solution specialists to understand your organisations readiness for migration, please contact us.