Physical Connections and Passwords

Posted on August 15, 2009. Filed under: CCNA, ICND1 break down | Tags: , , , |

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ICND1 and ICND2 break down

There are two ways to access a cisco switch or router:

  1. connect directly by using a console cable connection to the console port (CON) on the cisco device.
  2. connect from a remote location by dialing into a modem connected to the auxiliary (AUX) port on the cisco device. After initial basic configuration, you can also make an over-the-network connection, through Telnet to (Virtual TeletYpe interface) VTY ports. “Virtue” told us that a VTY port is not a physical port.

We can physically connecting a laptop to the Console Port of the switch with Rollover Cable.


A Rollover Cable have DB-9 connector at one end and RJ-45 connector at the other end.

The DB-9 connector connect to the laptop, RJ-45 connector connect to the sonsole port on the switch.

In order to use the console port on a router we need to configure our Terminal Emulation program (Hyper Terminal, TerraTerm Pro…) with the following parameters:

  • Baud rate: 9600
  • Data bits: 8
  • Parity: none
  • Stop bits: 1
  • Flow control: none

If the the console port connection is successful, the Cisco IOS command line interface (CLI) will be displayed in the terminal window. CLI provides a mean to configure the cisco devices, it interprets the commands that are entered by the user and carries out the corresponding operations. For a newly powered on Cisco 2960-24TT switch, the first screen looks like the following:

C2960 Boot Loader (C2960-HBOOT-M) Version 12.2(25r)FX, RELEASE SOFTWARE (fc4)
Cisco WS-C2960-24TT (RC32300) processor (revision C0) with 21039K bytes of memory.
2960-24TT starting…
Base ethernet MAC Address: 00D0.BC69.1316
Xmodem file system is available.
Initializing Flash…
flashfs[0]: 1 files, 0 directories
flashfs[0]: 0 orphaned files, 0 orphaned directories
flashfs[0]: Total bytes: 64016384
flashfs[0]: Bytes used: 4414921
flashfs[0]: Bytes available: 59601463
flashfs[0]: flashfs fsck took 1 seconds.
…done Initializing Flash.

Boot Sector Filesystem (bs:) installed, fsid: 3
Parameter Block Filesystem (pb:) installed, fsid: 4
Loading “flash:/c2960-lanbase-mz.122-25.FX.bin”…
########################################################################## [OK]
Restricted Rights Legend

Use, duplication, or disclosure by the Government is
subject to restrictions as set forth in subparagraph
(c) of the Commercial Computer Software – Restricted
Rights clause at FAR sec. 52.227-19 and subparagraph
(c) (1) (ii) of the Rights in Technical Data and Computer
Software clause at DFARS sec. 252.227-7013.

cisco Systems, Inc.
170 West Tasman Drive
San Jose, California 95134-1706

Cisco IOS Software, C2960 Software (C2960-LANBASE-M), Version 12.2(25)FX, RELEASE SOFTWARE (fc1)
Copyright (c) 1986-2005 by Cisco Systems, Inc.
Compiled Wed 12-Oct-05 22:05 by pt_team
Image text-base: 0x80008098, data-base: 0x814129C4

Cisco WS-C2960-24TT (RC32300) processor (revision C0) with 21039K bytes of memory.
24 FastEthernet/IEEE 802.3 interface(s)
2 Gigabit Ethernet/IEEE 802.3 interface(s)

64K bytes of flash-simulated non-volatile configuration memory.
Base ethernet MAC Address       : 00D0.BC69.1316
Motherboard assembly number     : 73-9832-06
Power supply part number        : 341-0097-02
Motherboard serial number       : FOC103248MJ
Power supply serial number      : DCA102133JA
Model revision number           : B0
Motherboard revision number     : C0
Model number                    : WS-C2960-24TT
System serial number            : FOC1033Z1EY
Top Assembly Part Number        : 800-26671-02
Top Assembly Revision Number    : B0
Version ID                      : V02
CLEI Code Number                : COM3K00BRA
Hardware Board Revision Number  : 0x01
Switch   Ports  Model              SW Version              SW Image
——   —–  —–              ———-              ———-
*    1   26     WS-C2960-24TT      12.2                    C2960-LANBASE-M

Cisco IOS Software, C2960 Software (C2960-LANBASE-M), Version 12.2(25)FX, RELEASE SOFTWARE (fc1)
Copyright (c) 1986-2005 by Cisco Systems, Inc.
Compiled Wed 12-Oct-05 22:05 by pt_team

Press RETURN to get started!

There are many information in this initial screen. I have highlighted a few lines for your, such as the switch’s hardware version, IOS software version, switch ports’ interfaces and the last line — “Press RETURN to get started!“.

So we Press Return to get started! The first prompt we see is:


“Switch” is the default device name for this switch, “>” is the User-Mode Prompt.

The CLI have two commonly used levels of access to commands:

  • User EXEC mode: provide the basic set of commands, such as some show commands.
  • Privileged EXEC mode: this mode is also called enable mode, where you have full access to all possible device configuration commands.

We enter enable command and press Return to change from the default user EXEC mode to privileged EXEC mode.

Notice that the prompt sign “>” changed to the Privileged-Mode Prompt “#”.

We enter disable command and press Return to change from the privileged EXEC mode to user EXEC mode.

Notice that the prompt sign “#” changed back to “>”

By default, there is no password for console port connection, but you can set up password under the privileged EXEC mode with the following commands:

Switch#config t
Enter configuration commands, one per line.  End with CNTL/Z.
Switch(config)#line console 0
Switch(config-line)#password cisco
%SYS-5-CONFIG_I: Configured from console by console
Building configuration…

Now the console port number 0 is password protected, the next time you log into the cisco switch via the console port, you will be asked for a password:

Switch con0 is now available

Press RETURN to get started.

User Access Verification


Note that during your typing, nothing will change on the screen. After you pressed the Return key, if the password is correct, you will be logged into the default user EXEC mode.



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6 Responses to “Physical Connections and Passwords”

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[…] network admin, as these commands are used daily. * Video Lab – Packet Tracer Interface Overview * Physical Connections and Passwords * Cisco IOS software overview * Physical Side of Cisco Switches * User, Enable and Privilege Modes […]

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