Thursday, June 27, 2013

Ahh, Human error...

realized that I had the wrong IP forwarded in all the changes I had made trying to get this to work to the 2509.

Holy moly, one of the more frustrating period of troubleshooting, for sure.

But this:

username cisco privilege 15 password 0 cisco
interface Ethernet0/0
 ip address dhcp
 ip nat outside
 timeout absolute 100000 0
interface Serial0/0
 ip address
interface Ethernet0/1
 no ip address
ip http server
no ip http secure-server
ip classless
ip default-network xx.xx.xx.xx
access-list 101 deny   tcp any any eq telnet
access-list 101 permit ip any any
line con 0
 logging synchronous
 length 0
line aux 0
line vty 0 4
 access-class 101 in
 password cisco
 transport input telnet
line vty x
 access-class 101 in
 password cisco
 login local
 rotary x
 transport input telnet
line vty 6 15
 access-class 101 in

Home routing going upscale

Well, with the issues I'm having with the DD-WRT, I'm glad to have had something finally arrive...

Antennas for the 1811w.

Now a little bit of work to get this implemented into the network.

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Changes, and fine tuning.

Well, after a lot of consideration and hoping, it looks like the Synaccess as an access server probably isn't going to be the best road.

I was attempting to set up a local TFTP server so people logged in remotely to the CCNP rack could save configs, but the issues the Synaccess has with local echo, doesn't appear to be something that is easily solved through terminal emulator configuration. It echos every Carriage return on the remote device in providing the echo to the local terminal, which when Cisco IOS gives you a carriage return to apply a default entry, doesn't allow you to add your manual entry.

Host1#copy flash: tftp:

Source filename []? ^@

?File name not specified

%Error parsing filename (Unknown error 0)

the ^@ is the remote echo carriage return.

So, I'm going to a 2509 access server. Getting that setup now.

Close up of the setup for Etherchannel labs:

Custom short throw 

Sunday, June 23, 2013

Configuring SSH access and the DD-WRT firmware choice

In attempting to configure secure remote access to my labs at home, I'm running into issues with, what I'm assuming is, handling of SSH within the home router.

The idea, eventually, is to replace the consumer router with an IOS based solution, but for now, I have to play around with DD-WRT firmware.

So far, (SVN revision 17135), is not working out.

line vty 0 4
 exec-timeout 0 0
 login local
 no exec

 transport input ssh

Have the Domain, RSA Keys set, username and password, and have tried changing default port for SSH, but am not having any luck. 

I'm going to try to set the SSHd up within the DD-WRT, and the router I'm trying to SSH to as a client to it. We'll see.

Friday, June 21, 2013

CCNP R&S rack nearing completion

Now with 200% more cable management.

Topo matches this now:

Ignore the rack setup in the topo, it hasn't been updated. Might do that now.

More 1841 rack mounts arrived that actually fit this time

These is the CCNA/CCNP rack I have for sale on Ebay now:

Pricing is at $1150 right now, but will probably come down to $995.00, which, believe it or not, is pretty slim margins. There is quite a bit of cost that nickles and dimes you when building a rack like this. 

That said, it's a solid rack, with everything you need to move to a more sophisticated rack as your certification studies move on. The 1841's are great routers for study, all the way thru CCIE.

So this is the setup.

  • 1 x 2509 access server w/8 port Octal cable
  • 1 x 1841 w/256/64 memory capable of running IOS 15.xx
  • 2 x 1841 w/128/32 memory set with 12.4T advanced IP
  • 3 x 3550 Catalyst 3550 24 port Switch with multi-layer IOS installed (VLANs, multi-layer switching/routing for CCNP)
  • 1 x WIC-2T
  • 2x WIC-1T
  • 3 x WIC-T1 v2
  • 1 x 12U compact table top equipment rack
  • 10 x 1ft Ethernet cables (straight and cross over and T1)
  • 2 x  6 ft Ethernet cables
  • 1 x smart serial cables
  • 1 x DB60 DCE/DTE cable
  • 1 x console cable for access server

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Used Cisco equipment...Test...Test...Test

In the interests of being a step above the other E-bay sellers of used equipment, I'm testing every device coming through the door. This is turning out to be an absolute necessity. The amount of issues I've found, most correctable, has definitely showed the value of this approach.

Bad modules
Bad Fans
loose parts
missing connectors

All on devices that were sold to me as Tested Good.

I hope my potential customer's see the value of this also.

And the real work of this operation:

custom cables, T1, and Switch to Switch.

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Starting an online business, both easy and hard

The time I'm investing in starting this business is definitely taking away from study time, but there are quite a few things that are important to engineering in general to be learned.

I am refreshing and learning new skills in managing password resets, configuration backups/installation, etc. as new-to-me equipment is coming in.

I'm learning about website management, DNS, MX mail direction, Cron Jobs, and a host of other skills you have to master to sell goods and services online.

I currently have enough equipment to sell an entire "CCNP/CCIE" rack, and three "CCNA/CCNP" racks.

I've scoured E-bay and found many people selling the same types of products. Since I'm starting small, I'm only building racks for Routing and Switching, and due to this, my racks are pretty focused.

A lot of the other online sellers are selling pretty old equipment, and racks that although usable, probably won't grow with the user. I've also focused a bit on keeping them compact, and in a form that uses as small an amount as possible of household electricity. I've kept the CCNP/CCIE rack to around 200 watts, and the CCNA/CCNP to about 160 watts, so not much more than a home computer.

My racks should transition well as people move from cert to cert. I'm using 1841's because they are probably one of the best routers made for this due to compactness, and energy usage.

I've found one local seller that liquidates entire companies, and since I can pick the equipment up from their location, I save shipping, which makes this endeavor even more viable.

I found two ADC UPS from them that are both 550 watt, for around $10.00 a piece. It's not going to work out that cheap though, as they both had QC dates on them from earlier than 2008. The newer one, surprisingly ended up being the dud, as I was able to pull the battery from them and attempt to charge them on a car battery charger that I have. The older batteries took a charge and the 1 year newer ones didn't.
Even so, one can pick up a new set of batteries for them for around $40.00, which is still a pretty good savings as these sell new for around $100.00

Finally got the PC rack mounted

We are in storms right now and the one UPS that I was able to get to work just did it's job.

lol, just did it again... Nasty storm.

Sunday, June 16, 2013

A new adventure...

I have decided that all this studying for both certifications and a business degree should not go to waste, so...

Cert-Racks, LLP. is now in business.

I am selling CCNA/CCNP, and CCNP/CCIE racks on E-bay, with a try-before-you buy plan in which you can see what utilizing live equipment is like prior to purchasing by remote access to a live lab. Fees from the  try-before-you-buy will be discounted from the purchase price of a rack purchased.

CCNP/CCIE rack listing:

CCNA/CCNP rack listing:

These aren't cheap by any means, but they are thought out, and a better value than most of the racking listed on Ebay currently in which most companies are trying to leverage a person's lack of knowledge to gain more profit.

The rack tryout is still in Beta, but will be available sometime in July.

Hope someone's interested, or I'm going to have a lot of excess equipment on hand... ;-)

Ccnp/ccie rack

The ccnp/ccie rack is mostly together.
Surprisingly quiet and only uses 210 watts with 4 switches and 4 routers running.

Thursday, June 13, 2013


a couple 1841's trickled in.

Cleaning physically and logically.

Router#copy flash:c1841-adventerprisek9-mz.124-24.T1.bin tftp
Address or name of remote host []?
Destination filename [c1841-adventerprisek9-mz.124-24.T1.bin]?
40494348 bytes copied in 156.916 secs (258064 bytes/sec)

Ohh, if I could spare the $$$

Microsoft Touch Table top computer on Ebay

and... we are mobile.

finished up the rolling portion of one rack. About $50 in materials, and a wider stance.

With the Ebay sales, and recycling, I'm still $15.00 ahead on the racks. ;-)

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

stuff coming in, slowly...

The 1841's are apparently going to take twice as long as 3560's and 3550's to ship apparently ?

The rack mounts for the Silverstone ATX case came in. Silverstone really makes nice products. I've always liked their Home Theater PC cases.

DB-60 cables arrived finally from Hong Kong. Paid too much for them for how long they took to get here.

And I spent a little bit to get one of the racks up off the ground and mobile.

Mounting them on 24" 2x4's to lengthen the stance of the rack some. Should work.

Monday, June 10, 2013

Getting creative with password recovery/ROMMON

The 1811 I picked up off of Ebay arrived and was locked down pretty hard. I wasn't even able to break to ROMMON.

Not having worked with one of these flashed based ISR's before, I wasn't sure what to do. I was going to see about booting from a USB stick, but thought I'd try one thing first. I powered it down, pulled the flash, powered it back up, and obviously, it went to ROMMON. I'm sure voiding the imaginary warranty that the new to me 1811, didn't have, I shoved the Flash back into the router and dir flash: and it was able to see it.

Changed confreg to 2142, and reloaded. It booted past the lockdown, and I was able to clear the startup config.

Works for me.

Now to figure out how to set it up as a home router.

Saturday, June 8, 2013

Routers bought

So, I did end up picking up three 1841's. I think they all have VPN modules in them and appear have to 256/64, and are running top shelf IOS.

I also picked up an 1811w, which will become the remote, remote access gateway for the network and the house. The DD-WRT from Buffalo networks has not be too reliable on the wireless end lately.

I'm having an issue with remote access to CLI, on the remote reboot power switches. I can access the CLI locally, but not remotely outside the house. I can reach the web interface, but not the CLI. I reach our house router through a powerline network extender from Western Digital, which works really well, but I'm wondering if it's blocking remote access somehow.


Never mind, the factory reset on the Buffalo must have worked, or the power cycle I did on the synaccess, who knows. I'm in it now, lol.

finding that I am only having issues with local echo with the synaccess box's with Putty. With hyperterm, or whatever is bundled with windows these days, I have no issues, nor do I with SecureCRT. Trying to figure out what setting is causing this in Putty. Command complete by tab is also not working in putty.

Just waiting for routers to show up now, and working on switch studying.

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

tying up loose ends, waiting on routers.

Upgraded the rest of the 3550's, picked up more rack bolts, and started mounting into the TSHOOT/CCNA rack.

Shopping for Routers to fill out my topologies now. 2811's, 1841's, 2621xm's. We'll see what it ends up as.

Made an offer on 5 1841's that was less than half the $1100 they were looking for, and they came down to $1095, snarky, but I guess they'll learn their lesson that they are looking for $200/rtr for a model that's selling for less than $100 at the mem config they have. It would have been $500 that they didn't have before, but maybe they are new at this.

Ebay is funny sometimes.

the Command center: where the magic happens... more like the scratching of head...

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Switch lab up and running, missing a 3560 though

Building the Synaccess cables was  a PITA. I've literally built thousands of custom cables(my project on the Dell Lebanon, Tennessee site was the burn-in racks, 1500 RJ45's termed and tested) , and it was still a pain. The RS232 requires one conductor to be skipped on each end, which if you have ever terminated an RJ45, sliding 7 conductors into a jack meant for 8 is literally a hit-or-miss proposition.

Still need hosts, the missing 3560, and a backbone router.

webcam is also up, embedding is going to be a problem from what I see on the camera makers forums

Monday, June 3, 2013

Home Lab work continues, cable making, integrating system into the network... testing, and a big Whew...

Well, I was up late last night and pretty dejected.

It was looking like the Synaccess remote power switches were going to be fine for remote power access, but the pass through for console ports that would save me the price of a couple 2509/2511's was iffy at best.

At first, it was looking like they were not going to work at all because they want the terminal emulator to be Local Echo Off, which means I could send commands through the access switch, but wouldn't be able to see what I was typing. That doesn't appear to fully be the case. I changed it to local echo on, and it still works, but with some caveats.

1. I was getting double entry's on the return from the device, which is fine, as long as it was only sending one command.

2. Scrolling a long window, such as show run would stop at the first screen. I've never had to change console setup, so I thought that might be a deal killer, but found that I can set console to length 0 which runs the whole command, then you just have to scroll back to see what you want, perfectly fine by me. Big relief.

And a geek like me can't help but giggle a bit when I can shut the power off to my rack from my phone...

So now, I'm making more cables, as the Synaccess has to have an RS232 to Cisco pin-out. It's probably the same pin-out as on the 2509/2511rj's, but I'm not sure. 

Brings back memories, as inside plant commercial cabling is what got me on the track to where I am now. If there is anything I know, it's cabling. Luckily I still have all the tools.

Need more rack bolts !!!
(and yes this will have an IP camera pointed at the racks, also because I'm a geek.)

Speaking of racks. The 200+, 14ft, and 25ft, CAT-3 jumpers, and 2 and 4 pair jumper wire that came in the craigslist deal with the racks ($125) were recycled today for $110.00 along with the 66blocks that sold on E-bay, I'm now cash positive on the deal, so the racks were FREE !

I also have about $500 worth of network install equipment on E-bay still from the deal.

Saturday, June 1, 2013

Piece by Piece, coming together

Spent some time this morning before work, building. Unfortunately, the bolts that fit these lucent racks almost don't exist. 12-32 size is almost impossible to find and most racks use 10-32.

The 10-32 bolts I picked up work, but aren't giving me warm fuzzy's. As the rack is aluminum, I think there is a chance of the bolt hole's stripping out.

I'll have more time to get everything configured this weekend. My weekends run Sunday thru Tuesday, due to working in a busy, 24/7 Network Operations Center.

3x 3550's, 2x 2611's, and the remote reboot power strip.

The remote reboot power strip is pretty cool and will be fun to script into use.

The First 3560 came in last night as well, and two more 3550's.