I wanted a reference to get GNS3 installed and running with links to important sites so here it is! Enjoy!
I. First you need to download and install GNS3. It is available from here:
II. Second you will want to download the IOS Unpack utility available here:
III. Install GNS3! Here is a link to a very good tutorial that covers both Windows as well as Linux (Ubuntu) installs. This tutorial also covers configuration such as IDLEPC values, BESS et. al. (Note: If this link is broken then search the GNS3 website)
IV. Unzip the Unpack utility that you downloaded. If you are in need of a good Zip utility then try http://www.7-zip.org/ It’s free and open-source! View the README file that you just unzipped and follow the instructions to Unpack the image that you want to use. Please note that both the most recent version of GNS3 as well as the Unpack utility support IOS-Based Routers, PIX and even ASA 7/8.
NOTE: You will need an IOS image for use with GNS3. I leave the licensing of said image to you. I personally do not advocate the use of tools such as IOSHunter http://www.vitaltech-group.com/IOSHunter.htm to obtain an image for lab use. Do so solely at your own discretion. I would probably email my local Cisco SE (Software Engineer) and kindly request an image for lab use. That said, I would recommend researching the image that you want since an SE will most likely grow tired of constant requests for IOS images and be less likely to help you out! You can research images by platform via the Cisco Feature Navigator available here: http://www.cisco.com/go/fn I am not a lawyer and do not know Cisco’s policy regarding use of IOS images for a non-production lab environment. Images from the following models currently work with GNS3 (Check the GNS3 documentation for an updated list of compatible models).
1710 1720 1721 1750 1751 1760 2610 2610XM 2611 2611XM 2620 2620XM 2621 2621XM 2650XM 2651XM 2691 3620 3640 3660 3725 3745 7200
VI. Now run GNS3 and follow the aforementioned tutorial to setup GNS3 and set the IDLEPC values. Note that if you are running Vista then you may have to use PuTTy for console access to the devices. I use PuTTy with PuTTyCM which makes PuTTy very comparable to SecureCRT.
ADDITIONAL TOPICS OF INTEREST: (GO AHEAD AND SET THESE UP!!!)
USE PUTTY FOR CONSOLE ACCESS
http://www.blindhog.net/gns3-how-to-use-putty-for-console-access/USE PUTTY CONNECTION MANAGER FOR CONSOLE ACCESS
http://www.brainbump.net/2008/08/gns3how-to-use-putty-connection-manager-for-console-access/CONFIGURE SDM (Security Device Manager) IN GNS3
If you want to install SDM or CCP and use it with GNS3 on Vista then read this thread if you run into issues!!!
HOW TO INTEGRATE A MICROSOFT LOOPBACK INTERFACE WITH GNS3
http://www.blindhog.net/how-to-integrate-a-microsoft-loopback-interface-with-gns3/SETUP VMWARE WITH GNS3
http://www.gns3-labs.com/2008/06/17/video-tutorials-setup-vmware-in-gns3-and-dynamips-dynagen-and-simple-relay-lab/GNS3 CCIE SECURITY VIRTUAL LAB
Now you can have a lab! Well.. Kind of!!!