newbie question, I'm afraid:

I got a second hand (or maybe more) Cisco WS-C2948G switch off eBay for use at home, but the thing came with no documentation and no software. I'm not a sysadmin, and I haven't got a clue (clearly) how to talk to the thing, or configure it.

Is there a complete idiot's guide to finding, connecting to, resetting and configuring your 2948G for dummies? Where would I find it, because the manuals on the Cisco site assume either more knowledge than I have, or a factory default setting, which I also don't seem to have.

I'm trying to connect to it using the 10BT MGT port and a crossover cable, from a laptop that is also connected to the net via a wireless adapter. When I do a netstat I don't see anything that isn't just my other machines, or my ISP.

Any pointers would be really helpful.

3 Answers 3


Why not start with the management guide?


It should cover everything you need. But to get you started.

You need a direct console connection (com port connection), configure your terminal emulation program for 9600 baud, 8 data bits, no parity, and 1 stop bit. You need a cisco console cable (blue one) for that switch if I recall correctly. The RJ-45 goes in the console port of the switch, the other end to your local com port. You can find more info about the cabling here:


To use the IP management you need the IP address and port of the switch first. You can configure these over the direct console connection.


FYI, the Cisco Console Cable jacks look like RJ-45 but the pin-out is different. As Pehrs said (I upvoted his answer), RTFM (this isn't a quick-n-dirty question; you need to know what you're doing) and get yourself a console cable. It'll be baby-blue and flat (non-twisted-pair).

In windows you would use Hyperterminal to interact with the console. I don't know the commands to hook your BSD terminal app to the serial port, unfortunately.

cisco_8P8C-DB9 cable


Ahh the 2948G - that will (if I remember correctly) run the CAT os not the Cisco IOS. a bit different than the standard. You do indeed need a console cable to start though. They should be easy enough to find.

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