Cisco Password recovery

I was given a Cisco router a few weeks back, so that I could practice for the Cisco CCNA exams. The only problem is that I had now idea what the passwords on it were. After some good old hard work, and lots of searching I finally figured out how to reset the password and set the router back to the defaults. This allowed me to start from a clean slate and start the process of learning how to manage and maintain a Cisco router.

The firstthing to do is to set up the terminal to function properly. Open something like Hyperterminal and use the following settings:

  • 9600 baud rate
  • No parity
  • 8 data bits
  • 1 stop bit
  • No flow control

Ok, now that the terminal is set. Connect to the Cisco router, and power cycle it. Within the first 60 seconds, press the Break key on the key board. This will put the router in ROMMON. At the prompt that comes up type confreg 0×2124 to boot the flash.

That step skips the startup configuration, ingoring the passwords.

Now type reset and wait for the router to reboot. This will start the router up without loading the saved configuration. It will act like a brand new router. Once you are at the prompt type in enable you will now be in enable mode. The prompt should be Router#.

Now type in configure terminal and use the enable secret <password> to set the password for your router. The next thing that you should type is config-register 0×2102.

Now type end or Ctrl-z this will leave configuration mode. Type in write memory or copy running-config startup-config to commit and save changes. You will now be able to set up your router like you know (or want to know)

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