Friday, August 14, 2009

A Bit Of A Change - Yet Another Update

In the immortal words of Peter Doherty "Promises promises, I know, you've heard them all before...."

Okay, let me start with an apology to anyone who takes the time to visit my blog. Recently I've been crap at getting stuff out on the blog, and I've explained the reasons as being my spare time, which there's little when you have a 10 month old daughter to prioritise, is mostly spent with my head in my CCNA study book. So trying to find time to play with all the great tools on BackTrack has really taken a hit. So i've decided to change my plan slightly.

For the foreseeable future, or at least until I have passed the CCNA and maybe the Security specialisation after that, I'm going to focus on Cisco related posts. Originally The aim of this blog was for me to spend time learning something and then blog about it which then hopefully might help anyone who stumbles across it. Blogging what I have been learning also helps me to remember stuff and an added bonus is my blog serves as an accessible reference for me to use when i need to refer back to something in the future.

Great, that out the way i'll just describe my setup and then i'll get down to some nitty gritty Cisco IOS fun.

The book I am using to study for the CCNA is CCNA - Cisco Certified Network Associate Study Guide by Todd Lammle. This book was recommended to me by a mate and I really couldn't recommend it enough. The book was worth every penny and his writing style makes a joy to read.

What I'm using for my lab is a Cisco 2950 switch (that I got out of a bin!) and the GNS3 software. GNS3 is a program (windows, linux and Mac) that allows you to take a IOS image from a router or pix firewall and sort of run it in an emulator so you can access it and configure it just like the real device. Within the software you can build networks of routers, switches, Firewalls and PC's. Very cool stuff and very free too. Which is always nice! Getting up and running is pretty easy with GNS3 but there are plenty of videos on YouTube if you get stuck. You'll also need a couple of IOS's as well (cough cough bittorrent cough)

So once you have GNS3 up and a IOS to play with, you can get down to building your virtual test lab to get your feet wet without screwing up any physical devices.

All you then need to do is right click on a device, start it up and then select Console.

Bingo! Your very own Cisco test lab to play with whilst you learn.
OK, thats it for this quick update post, I will be posting again within the next few days on configuring a router.

I really hope this set of posts are useful to someone other than myself.




Dave said...

I agree that Lammle's book is a good buy. I, too, find his writing style is very easy and it almost felt like I was reading a novel than an instructional textbook.

As far as simulation is concerned, Cisco have produced Packet Tracer which is available to Netacademy Students via their site. I suspect that a copy can be obtained from other sources though!

SynJunkie said...

Cheers Dave. I'll have to have a look at Packet Tracer when I get to that point in my studies (chapter 6 currently).

Thanks for the comment.

cdman83 said...

GNS3 - Very cool tip. And free + open source. Thank you for it.

PS. Could you please change the color of your comments from black to something else? They are unreadeable in the current format...

Best regards.

SynJunkie said...

I'll see what I can do. It seems the text for the comments is black or

Might have to change the whole scheme. Oh well, bit of a change might not be a bad thing!

SynJunkie said...

Ahh, seemed like simply editing the html directly worked.

Cheers cdman83, you made me make my blog cooler!