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Password Reset on Cisco 2509 Access Server

Problem: I had two Cisco 2611 routers and one Cisco 2509 router and I needed to reset the password so that I could take control of the routers for my CCNA studying. I had purchased these devices from Ebay and the sellers didn’t provide any of the usernames or passwords.

You can easily find the information on Cisco’s website to reset the password for most of the new routers, but for the older routers it was impossible to find. That is why I am creating this article, since the password reset steps for the 2500-series routers is much different from any of the newer routers. I figured that since this information is difficult to find that I would post the solution here and that one day it will help others get around this concern.

The password reset of the 2500-series routers, like almost all Cisco gear, starts with powering off the unit and then powering it back on. I am actually going to list out the steps in numerical order here to make this a bit easier to follow:

  1. Power the router off (Usually wait about 30 seconds) and then power the router back on
  2. Wait about 60 seconds from hitting the power on and then hit the ctrl-break
    key sequence
  3. After you hit control break, you should be greeted with the information-less “>” greater than prompt also referred to as the rommon
    prompt
  4. At the “>” prompt enter in the following config register command:   “>  o/r  0×042″  this will set the config register to boot from the ROM and to skip over the settings in NVRAM
  5. After you hit enter, you will be returned to the “>” prompt where you will enter the following command:  “> i”  (All this does is initialize the router)
  6. The router will now reboot and then reload. Afterwards, you will get the dialog asking if you would like to enter the initial configuration setup.  (Just enter “no”)
  7. Once the cold restart takes place and when you see “press return to get started” (Go ahead and hit enter)
  8. At the “router>” prompt type “en” to get into enable mode (You will not be asked for a password)
  9. At the “router#” prompt enter in “router#  configure memory” and then enter in “router# configure terminal”
  10. Once in global config mode enter in “router(config)#  enable secret 0 ”
  11. Set the register back to its default by entering “router(config)# config-reg 0×2102″
  12. Exit out of global config mode and save
    your configuration by entering “router# write memory” or “router# copy running-config startup-config”
  13. Just reload the router and you should be able to configure away!!! Reload by entering “router# reload” and then confirm with the stroke of the enter key!

As usual, I hope that this information helps you out in the event you ever need to change out a password.

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