Password recovery - 2900XL

Hello all,

I am about to perform a password recovery on a Catalyst 2900 XL switch. Got the directions straight off of Cisco's website.

But I have a question that would require the knowledge of an experianced user. It goes like this....if I perform the password recovery, will I loose all the settings of switch as configured by the previous admin?

Thank you for your time folks.

Regards, Vishard.

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No, you onle need to reset the enable password while you are in recovery mode. Reboot, you will be loaded to previous configuration with new enable password.

egas wrote:

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Assuming one follows the directions down the path that says how to retain the existing configuration. If you fail to do that, you won't reboot with the old config still in place (although it'll have you rename the config file into a new name, so it'll still exist in flash: minus the VLAN data which is stored seperately in a different file.

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Doug McIntyre

Thanks for the input guys!

I'm gonna go into the office and try it out on Sunday.

I found a site that had the info to recover the password but didn't LOOK as initimidating as the info on Cisco's website (even though it was pretty much the same thing!)

I'm gonna post it below in case someone ever come looking for it here.


This document describes the password recovery procedure for the Cisco Catalyst 2900-XL and the Cisco Catalyst 3500-XL. Step-by-Step Procedure

  1. Attach a terminal or PC with terminal emulation to the console port of the switch. Use the following terminal settings:

9600 baud rate No parity 8 data bits No stop bit
  1. Unplug the power cable.
  2. Hold down the mode button while reconnecting the power cord to the switch. You can release the mode button a second or two after the LED above port 1x is no longer illuminated.

The following instructions appear:

The system has been interrupted prior to initializing the flash file system. The following commands will initialize the flash file system, and finish loading the operating system software:

flash_init load_helper boot

  1. Type flash_init.
  2. Type load_helper.
  3. Type dir flash:.

The switch file system is displayed:

Directory of flash: 2 -rwx 843947 Mar 01 1993 00:02:18 C2900XL-h-mz-112.8-SA 4 drwx 3776 Mar 01 1993 01:23:24 html 66 -rwx 130 Jan 01 1970 00:01:19 env_vars 68 -rwx 1296 Mar 01 1993 06:55:51 config.text 1728000 bytes total (456704 bytes free)

  1. Type rename flash:config.text flash:config.old to rename the configuration file.

This file contains the password definition. 8. Type boot to boot the system.

  1. Enter N at the prompt to start the Setup program, Continue with the configuration dialog? [yes/no] : N
  2. At the switch prompt type en to turn on enable mode.
  3. Type rename flash:config.old flash:config.text to rename the configuration file with its original name.
  4. Copy the configuration file into memory:

Switch# copy flash:config.text system:running-config Source filename [config.text]? (press Return) Destination filename [running-config]? (press Return)

The configuration file is now reloaded. 13. Change the password:

switch#configure terminal switch(config)#enable password Cisco switch#control/Z

  1. Write the running configuration to the configuration file:

switch(config)#write memory

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