I have been a Sun admin now for about 6 years. I have always been more interested in security than anything else and I am thinking about writing some cisco security certs. I want to buy a used cisco router from eBay. I have been looking at the 2500 and 2600 series. For studying purposes will these routers be enough - they are just for studying logging in testing commands stuff like that nothing serious
Here's some advice that will save you some money, along with giving you more than what you want.
Do a search on google for Dynamips and Dynagen. Download Dynagen as it comes with Dynamips anyway. Dynamips is a Cisco 7200 Emulator that runs real Cisco IOS's, so you need one of these IOS's too. If you can't get your hands on an image from a 7200, download a piece of software called IOS hunter - this will allow you to get an image for a 7200.
You can put together excellent labs with this emulator. It truly is the best thing out there.
I agree that Dynamips and Dynagen are absolutely superb, however, I have the idea that ipsec over them might be a bit of a problem.
I have only used Dynamips on Windows with cygwin and the performance in terms of packet forwarding rate is terrible, maybe IPSEC is just a bit too far? I do though wonder what the performance difference might be on native Linux vs Cygwin.
I could get about 4 or 6 7200s on about the best PC money can buy. (Well [roughly] HP wx6200 dual CPU [4 virtual CPU],
4G DRAM ).
For most router work it is just fine but not having tried IPSEC I have the idea that it may be just too much for it.
To the OP. Avoid 2500 for IPSEC. 2600 is better..
I have now re-read the original post and it is somewhat contradictory.
Well which is it - Security certification or a bit of general cisco this and that? If the latter Dynamips is the job.