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Configuring Virtual Routers in GNS3

This Tutorial addresses:
  • Routers
  • Consoles
  • Configuration
Since GNS3 provides only a console where the scholars and network administrators can create simple and complex network topologies, it is important for them to add and configure multiple virtual routers in the console to make the topologies work efficiently.

Adding and configuring virtual routers in GNS3 includes:

  1. Selecting the best IOS image to mount in the GNS3.

  2. Adding the original IOS images to the GNS3.

  3. Adding the virtual routers to the GNS3 console.

  4. Configuring the virtual routers by specifying the type and number of virtual NICs that they might have.

  5. Connecting the routers to the virtual switches that can also be created within the GNS3 console. Creating the entire virtual topology that constitutes virtual switches, virtual routers, virtual PCs, etc.

  6. Powering on the virtual routers.

  7. Finally configuring the virtual routers to explore the technology, and/or to create a test network environment.


  • Since virtual routers added and configured in GNS3 use the original IOS images, the configuration process, the latency in the output, and the final results are accurate and identical to the ones that the administrators receive while using the real physical routers.

    In all, GNS3 allows the scholars and administrators to configure the virtual routers in a bit more challenging way as compared to the process of configuring the real routers.

    Here’s what you need to do to configure virtual routers in GNS3:

    1. Log on to the computer on which GNS3 is installed.

    2. Initialize the GNS3 application by double-clicking its icon.

    3. Mount the appropriate IOS image on the application.

    4. On the GNS3 console, click the router icon from the toolbox in the left.

    5. From the displayed list of available routers, the one with the corresponding mounted image will be shown as enabled (In blue color).



    6. Drag the router icon from the list to the center area (work space).

    7. Right-click the router in the work space, and click Configure from the context menu.



    8. On the opened Node configurator box, click to select R1 (or any other router name that you may have given) from the left pane.

    9. From the right pane, go to the Slots tab.

    10. From the displayed drop-down lists, choose the appropriate virtual ports to add them to the virtual slots.



    11. Click OK when done.

    12. Back on the GNS3 console, use the above steps to configure all other routers added to the application.

    13. Start connecting and configuring the virtual routers when done.


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