Layer 2 switches with full IOS in GNS3

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So long ago GNS3 was released and well it was lacking a few features and in my experience quite buggy. However now after a successful kickstarter campaign (which I backed!) they have released v1.x.x

Now up to 1.3.6 I will share some of my experience and tips, tricks, etc. Originally (and now) layer 2 switches were somewhat difficult to get going in GNS3. But now thanks to vIOS and the great team behind GNS3 and Qemu it’s easy!

At this point I assume you have GNS3 installed and working (I am using 1.3.6 in this tutorial)

Firstly you are going to need the vdk, now normally you have to extract it from an all in one image, however because I’m awesome and outlawish I will provide it for you here:

You will need 7zip to extract it. Once extracted fire up GNS3.

      1. Go into preferences (view > Preferences) and click on Qemu VM’s, click New
      2. Select iOSv-L2 from the drop-down list and click next.step2
      3. Name it whatever you like L2-Switch works great, click next.
      4. Select the latest Qemu binary from the list (if you are running 64bit OS I suggest this one).step4
      5. Now the important part, find the vIOS-L2.vmdk that you downloaded from here and extracted. Click finish.step5
      6. You now have a L2 switch with 8 ethernet ports in you Qemu VM’s list!step6
      7. Start her up and console in, it will take a while to boot and remember you can’t cable anything to it unless its powered off. You may see some errors whilst booting but it should be fine. step7

And that’s it! you can create as many as you like (as long as you got the RAM, Qemu is a bit of a hog).

Enjoy! I will post how to get a layer 3 switch, an ASA AND I will do a basic getting started with GNS3 tutorial.

If you like it, share it! show some love @ompster


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