How to – Complete Cisco Router Password Recovery Steps

If you forgot your Cisco router password, find below step by step password recovery procedure of the Cisco Routers.  Did you know you can change them without losing your configuration? In order to perform a password recovery, you will need to reboot the router a couple of times and you have to change configuration register settings on the Cisco Router.  This means downtime, but it is a good sacrifice to make in order to get your passwords reset.

First, connect DB9 end of the standard light blue serial cable to your serial port on your computer.  The other end of the cable should plug into the port labeled “Console” on the back of the Cisco router.  If you do not have a serial port, then you’ll need to go purchase a USB-to-serial adapter cable and install it on your computer.
1. Now that your hardware is connected, establish a serial connection with the router.

The HyperTerminal settings you need are:

HyperTerminal  Settings for Cisco Router

Baud: 9600
Data bits: 8
Parity: No
Stop bits: 1
Flow Control: None

On Windows, I use putty for this connection.  Yes, putty can be used to make serial connections as well as telnet/ssh.  Hyperterminal works great as well.  On Linux, I use minicom and on FreeBSD/OpenBSD, I use cu (cu -s 9600 -l /dev/cuad0).

2. Turn the router off using the power switch and turn it back on.

3. Once text starts popping up on the screen, send the break command CTRL + B or CTRL +BREAK (sometimes it is CTRL +X). This will abort the boot and present you with a rommon 1> prompt.

rommon 1>

4. From the new prompt you need to change the configuration register using the following command: confreg 0×2142

rommon 2>confreg 0x2142

5.If you are using an older model of router you may need to enter o/r 0×2142

6.Now you need to recycle the router with the reset command.

rommon 3>reset

7. If you used the o/r command then reset the router with the I command

8. Once the router finishes restarting you will find that there are no passwords to deal with, so you can enter enabled mode carte blanche.

9. Once in enabled mode enter this: copy start run. This will copy the startup config to the running config.

Router#copy start run

10.Now, go into configuration mode with the config t command

Router#confi t


11. Once there enter the new password with the enable secret password command (i.e. enable secret admin).

Router(config)#enable secret Ciscoconsole

12. Now set the configuration register back to normal with this command: config-register 0×2102

Router(config)#config-register 0x2102

13. Exit configuration mode and enter the command copy run start to copy the new configuration to NVRAM.


Router#copy run start

14. Execute reload command your router to restart the Router.


15. Once the router is back up you need to configure all of your interfaces with the no shutdown command  otherwise all interfaces on Cisco Router will not work.




Filed Under: Password Recovery


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