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Brush Up One The Basic Commands for Cisco Switches

by PivIT Global, on Mar 23, 2020 10:00:00 AM

We all need a refresher once and a while! Brush up on the most fundamental switch commands for Cisco devices. For this discussion we'll be using using PuTTY!

cisco switches at pivit global

As you know, the switch is the heart of your network. It links all of the other equipment together and gathers important information about your network traffic. Whether you are installing a brand new switch or simply reorganizing your network, the first step is connecting your device to the console port of the switch. Then, we'll move to the configuration of the switch. The initial configuration allows the switch to recognize the new devices that are attached.  

Task 1: How You Access the Switch

We can access the switch using different software, most PuTTY and secure CRTs are used to access the switch through a console cable. This physical connection is shown below.

basic switch plug-in computer to switch to power

Let's Configure the Switch:
  1. Download PuTTY 
  2. Connect the console cable to your Cisco router or switch  
  3. Run the downloaded putty.exe file
  4. Using the PuTTY navigation, expand "Connection" then select "Serial" PuTTY Configuration for cisco switch at pivit global
  5. Enter the port number inside the "Serial line to connect to" text box. The port number is COM4 in the sample below but the port number may be different for your connection Correctly identifying the port is crucial for proper configuration.
  6. Next, we'll configure the serial line, for this example, we've used the values below: 
    1. Bits per sec: 9600
    2. Data bits: 8
    3. Stop bits: 1
    4. Parity: None
    5. Flow control: XON/XOFF
  7. Press ‘Open’ and the command line will appear where you can configure your switch.

basic pivit global configuration command for switch

Task 2: Set up switch enable passwords

You’ll want to setup a switch password for added security. Be sure to know the Cisco basic configurations before moving towards advanced configurations. You can configure secure password as shown in the picture below.  


switch configuration enable passwords at pivit global

Task 3: Set up Cisco switch Host Name

You can configure your Cisco switchs host name in order to easily identify the switch location, etc. The picture below shows how one can configure each switch’s host name. You’ll need this option if your network has multiple switches installed and it is difficult to remember all of the switches. You can configure a host name to remember its location. Configuration is given below: 


host name configuration commands at pivit global

Task 4: How to configure MOD banner in your switch

Users will be presented with a MOTD (Message of the Day) banner every time they attempt a connection via the console port, auxiliary port, SSH or a telnet session to the Cisco switch. Use the following commands to configure your MOTD message. Notice the # character is before and after the message. We mostly used this banner for security purposes so that if anyone mistakenly accesses this switchwe can convey a legal message to them.  


configuring MOD banner commands at pivit global

Task 5: How to configure telnet on the Cisco switch

In this task, we configure telnet services on a switch to access it from anywhere remotely. This configuration is similar to how you would configure telnet on routers. Telnet allows you to configure, monitor, and manage your switch from remote locations. You have to configure and enable passwords for telnet configurations in order to use this feature. Below are the configurations. 


telnet configuring cisco switches commands at pivit global

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Topics:Configuration Guides