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  1. Junior Member
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    #1

    Default questions about different routers for home lab

    so i'm studying for the ccna exam and i decided to start getting equipment for a home lab. I know for a fact i'm getting the 2950 switch but i'm having trouble in deciding on the routers. What's the difference between the 2501 and the 2503 and the 2514 and the 2524 and which one is the best out of the four? They are all pretty much the same price at cablesandkits.com
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  3. Mobo Wizard ULWiz's Avatar
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    #2
    Check out the FAQ under the CCNA forum got answers for everything you need.


    I would at least get a 2610 or a 2620 as a router for the CCNA
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  4. Cisco Moderator mikej412's Avatar
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    #3

    Default Re: questions about different routers for home lab

    Check out table 1 (or table 1-1 -- but the images aren't working in this one right now).

    Different version of the 2500 series routers have either Ethernet or Token Ring interfaces plus the built in Serial WAN interfaces.
    Some have IDSN interfaces (and some don't -- the 2503 is a 2501+BRI Interface).
    Some models have built in Ethernet Hubs (so you don't need a trasceiver).
    Some models have multiple LAN interfaces.
    Some models are multiport Serial WAN interface models.

    The 2501 has the AUI Ethernet and 2 Serial WAN Interfaces.
    The 2503 has the AUI Ethernet and 2 Serial WAN Interfaces and 1 ISDN BRI Interface.
    The 2514 has TWO AUI Ethernet and 2 Serial WAN Interfaces.

    The 2513, 2514, & 2515 were the dual LAN interface version. The 2514 had the dual AUI Ethernet interfaces. The 2513 is the 1 Ethernet and 1 Token Ring Model. The 2515 was the Dual Token Ring model.

    The 2524 added a couple of modular slots (and gave up an interface or two) -- not that useful if they don't come with the interfaces.

    The 2509 or 2511 models are the AUI Ethernet with the ASYNC lines which you can use as a terminal server.

    The 2520 2521 2522 2523 routers are Ethernet or Token Ring multiport Serial Routers -- good for dedicated Frame Relay Switches in your home lab.

    You should get any 2500 already maxed out with 16Meg DRAM and 16Meg FLASH and with the last 12.2 Enterprise Plus IOS. There was a 12.3 IP Plus IOS for the 2500s that could come in handy.

    A 2501 for $10 + shipping may be "worth it" -- but once you hit $25 you may as well start looking at the 2610 or 1721 routers.
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    #4
    i'm interested in the 1721. Do i need a tranceiver for them. What's a good price for them
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    #5
    actually the 1721 is a little out of my price range. I'm most likely going to get a 2503 except none of the people selling on ebay give the ios. Do you know a website that sells them for cheap and give the ios
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    #6
    Quote Originally Posted by bambam123
    actually the 1721 is a little out of my price range. I'm most likely going to get a 2503 except none of the people selling on ebay give the ios. Do you know a website that sells them for cheap and give the ios
    Have you checked for a 2501 on ebay with a show version included for the IOS version and memory amounts? The 2501 is effectively the same as the 2503 with the exception of the BRI interface which you wouldn't have a use for anyways.

    I think the problem you might run into on ebay at least is many many sellers I doubt will really want to invest much time for a small sale such as a 2500 router (with exception to the one's still work a good bit like an access server or a 2522 for a frame switch). I have a stack of at least a dozen or so various 2500 series routers and some 2900 series switches that I am probably going to sneak into work the next time our recyclers come by because it's just not worth my time to sell them on ebay for the minimal amount of money I'll generate compared to the time I'll have to spend listing them and packaging and shipping them.

    While you are looking around, do keep in mind your total cost you stick into a 2500 series router too, a 2501 for example you will have at least another $10-20 for an ethernet transceiver unless you find an auction for a router with it included plus another $25 or so if you purchase one that isn't maxed out.
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  8. Cisco Moderator mikej412's Avatar
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    #7
    Quote Originally Posted by bambam123
    actually the 1721 is a little out of my price range. I'm most likely going to get a 2503 except none of the people selling on ebay give the ios. Do you know a website that sells them for cheap and give the ios
    There's a "buy it now or best offer" for a 1721 with A/C power adapter, free shipping, 12.3 IOS, and 64D/32F memory for $40 on eBay right now.

    You'd probably want to add a WIC-1T to that -- which I've gotten on eBay for as little as $5. But sometimes you can't find any for less than $25 -- so you've got to decide how much you want to spend -- and then you may have to shop around and bid for a while on eBay.

    When I was buying my routers on eBay I'd look for sellers who included the output of a "show version" command. If it's not there you can always ask the seller for a copy of that output and if there is an IOS already loaded on the flash.

    I currently see fully loaded 2501s and 2503s (same seller) with Transceivers going for around $22 (with shipping) -- but you'd have to hope no one else bids them up and you'd have to ask the seller if there is an IOS loaded). I also see someone selling Transceivers alone for $20 plus shipping In the past I usually got my transceivers for between $5-$10.
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    #8
    i'm thinking about getting the 2505 because for that one you don't need a transceiver. I checked on ebay the guy said it had 11.2 ios. Is that good ios
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    #9
    does it matter if it has 16mb or 8mb?
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  11. Junior Member
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    #10
    what does u guys think about this site

    http://www.cablesandkits.com/cisco-2...ry-p-1350.html

    for 50 bucks i get a 2501 router with max memory and flash and i can get it with 12.2 ios
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    #11

    Default Re: questions about different routers for home lab

    Quote Originally Posted by mikej412
    A 2501 for $10 + shipping may be "worth it" -- but once you hit $25 you may as well start looking at the 2610 or 1721 routers.
    I would check out ebay, that's where I've bought most of my equipment. Others places I've had good luck are posting a wanted listing on craigslist and going to the state surplus warehouse.
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    #12
    well it seems like if i was going to get a 2500 series router i would have get the upgrades and make sure that the ios is up to date and i would need a transceiver also. Wouldn't it be the same price if i just bough a 800 series router because you don't need a transceiver and it comes with more up to date ios
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    #13
    I don't believe 800 series routers have a serial interface. 2610s and 1721s (I think) have a RJ45 ethernet interface which would not need a transceiver. If you can find one with a serial card that would work well. What are your goals in buying a router? Do you just want to play around with the IOS or are you going to setup labs to practice the different concepts? I ask because for routing protocols you need at least two routers and some switching concepts work best with three switches. Also, are you just going for a CCNA or do you plan to go further?

    If you haven't already I recommend reading through this: http://www.networkworld.com/community/node/24916
    Though most of the prices in the article are a bit high, as long as you are willing to invest a little time you can usually find some pretty good deals out there.
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  15. Cisco Moderator mikej412's Avatar
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    #14
    I like CablesandKits, but as I said a 2501 isn't worth mutch more than $25 including the shipping costs -- and even then you'd like it come with a transceiver.

    And if you don't buy one already maxed out on DRAM and FLASH, you'll probably have to pay to upgrade the memory to run the last large IOS versions that you need -- and you'd still have to make sure you buy a router that does have that good IOS on it. And if you have to update the ROM BIOS to support non-Cisco memory upgrades, that's about $7 more you'll have to spend. Since those costs add up -- that's why I said look at the 1721 for $50 instead. Plus you'll need at least one newer router anyway to support SDM and 802.1Q trunking to support "router on a stick."

    11.x is too old, but if you get another 2500 with the 12.2 Enterprise Plus you can use that image. IOS images are specific to router models, so that sweet 1700 or 2600 IOS doesn't work on a 2500 router. I don't think SmartNet Contracts for old equipment like the 2500s are available for purchase anymore -- so what ever IOS you get when you buy the routers is the IOS you'll have to run in your lab. That's why you should ask for the output of a "show version" command so that you know what you're getting.

    The 2520 (4 serial ports) or the 2522 (10 serial ports) you can use as a frame relay switch and the 2509 (8 terminal lines) or 2511 (16 terminal lines) you can use as terminal servers are worth more because they do more for you in your home lab.
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    #15

    Default Re: questions about different routers for home lab

    Quote Originally Posted by kalebksp
    Quote Originally Posted by mikej412
    A 2501 for $10 + shipping may be "worth it" -- but once you hit $25 you may as well start looking at the 2610 or 1721 routers.
    I would check out ebay, that's where I've bought most of my equipment. Others places I've had good luck are posting a wanted listing on craigslist and going to the state surplus warehouse.
    I suggest checking any state surplus or university surplus options that you can look into. There is a place in Wisconsin for the university system that sells off old assets at great bargains. All of my 2500's that I have as well as a number of 2900 series switches I spent just over $100 for about a year and a half ago. Included in the lot was a 2509, 2511, and two 2522's - I sold off one of the 2522's on ebay and paid for the bunch of routers and even made a profit

    You might not be as fortunate as I was, but it's the lesser known avenues that you can check that tend to hold the best bargains.
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  17. Junior Member
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    #16
    i plan to do various labs at my home. I want to have a thorough understanding of cisco routers. Right now i'm just trying to get my ccna and hopefully in the future i can go for the ccnp
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    #17
    is the 2610 modular? I don't want a modular router. Also do all the routers come with serial interface?
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  19. Senior Member Netwurk's Avatar
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    #18
    Yes, the 2600's are modular - which isn't a bad thing as they are expandable. The 2600XM's are even better as they come with Fast Ethernet ports and can use many of the newer cards.

    A 2500 is still a good starting point for getting a CCNA lab going. I started out with a 2516, which saved me from getting a transceiver as it has RJ45 ports. You also get two serial ports and an ISDN port (kind of useless, but still out there in many shops).

    Plus one of the ports on the 2516 has a button that lets you change your connection from straight-through to crossover. Handy if you accidentally use the wrong cable type.

    This page is still up on the Cisco site if you want some more info on 2500's

    http://www.cisco.com/en/US/docs/rout...MProdOver.html
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    #19
    does the 2600 come with built in serial port and everything else that is needed to do basic functions that a 2500 can do or will i have to buy expansion thingies?
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  21. Went to the dark side.... Moderator networker050184's Avatar
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    #20
    Quote Originally Posted by bambam123
    does the 2600 come with built in serial port and everything else that is needed to do basic functions that a 2500 can do or will i have to buy expansion thingies?
    I'd suggest you hold off on buying any equipment until you do little research and find out about those "expansion thingies" The last thing you want is to waste money because of a lack of knowledge on what you are spending the money on.

    Here is a good place to start for information on the 2600 model routers.
    An expert is a man who has made all the mistakes which can be made.
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  22. Cisco Moderator mikej412's Avatar
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    #21
    Quote Originally Posted by networker050184
    I'd suggest you hold off on buying any equipment until you do little research and find out about those "expansion thingies"
    Good Advice.

    Anyone remember where that old post is I'm sure I did about the different expansion thingies? Probably had some links to the Cisco Docs.

    This is still a good thread. It's fun following the "thought process" as someone tries to come to grip with what they need -- and what they need to learn -- to build a home lab.

    And it has been mentioned a few times before by more than a few people -- you do a lot of learning while putting together your own lab.
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    #22
    This was one I found awhile ago. It's obviously got a 2600 focus: http://www.kmj.com/cisco/c2600.html
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  24. Cisco Moderator mikej412's Avatar
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    #23
    As I mentioned in the NM-1FE-2W in 2610xm thread,
    Quote Originally Posted by mikej412
    just because a module fits in a router doesn't mean it's supported.
    .

    One of things you should learn "early"

    The 3640 comes with NO interfaces.
    The 3620 comes with NO interfaces and only runs up to IOS 12.3.

    The 3600 routers take Network Modules (Like that NM-1FE2W). Some of the NMs can then let you add WICs.

    And the 2600 don't come with Serial Interfaces -- you'd have to add a WIC-1T (with the DB60 connector). You could also add a WIC-2T, but that uses the small "smart serial" connector. I find it easier when changing cables to just have all DB60s.
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  25. Cisco Moderator mikej412's Avatar
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    #24
    Quote Originally Posted by mikej412
    Anyone remember where that old post is I'm sure I did about the different expansion thingies? Probably had some links to the Cisco Docs.
    I found the post, but the link to the sweet Router Module Cross Reference PDF no longer works, and a quick search didn't find the file anywhere on the Cisco Web Site.

    But this doc should help with the connection thingies.
    Overview of Cisco Network Modules for Cisco Access Routers

    And for those of you who aren't hardware geeks, you may want to read this doc as well for some $ and maybe life saving hints, cautions, and warnings.
    Installing Cisco Network Modules in Cisco Access Routers

    And this was in another thread
    Quote Originally Posted by mikej412
    NMs are Network Modules and you can use them in 2600s, 2800s, 3600s, 3700s, 3800s, etc not all NMs work on all platforms -- so check the product sheets for the module cross-reference chart.

    WICs are WAN Interface Card -- go in WIC slots on the 2600s and 1700s and WIC slots in some NMs.

    VICs are Voice Interface Cards

    VWICs are Multiflex Voice WAN Interface Cards

    HWICs are High-speed WAN Interface Cards (2800s, 3800s)

    AIMs are Advanced Integration Modules
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  26. Senior Member Netwurk's Avatar
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    #25
    Here's an oldie-but-goodie fun guide to the 2600's

    http://routergod.com/elizabethhurley/
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