In this post we will learn how to install and run Cisco router as a virtual machine. Cisco has a special product called CSR (Cloud Services Router) 1000v for deploying routers as virtual machines. You can use these VMs for testing and learning purposes. Cisco supports all popular cloud and virtualization platforms, but I will use VMWare ESXi 6.7 for demo.
Download OVA file for CSR 1000v from Cisco website (https://software.cisco.com/download/home). You will need an active support contract for this
Make sure you have your VMWare ESXi host up and running
Step 1: Deploy CSR 1000v OVA file
Connect to your VMWare ESXi host and deploy CSR 1000v OVA file:
Click Create/Register VM
Choose Deploy a virtual machine from an OVF or OVA file and click Next
Enter a name for your VM and select OVA file. Click Next
Select storage for this VM. Click Next
Select deployment options. Leave Deployment type set to 1 vCPU, 4 GB RAM
If you get an error “A required disk image was missing.” then read this post.
Step 2: Edit Settings of the VM
You might want to go to the Edit Settings of your VM and change some settings. Most probably you will have to assign network adapters to proper Port Groups:
Step 3: Connect to a virtual router’s console
Now you can power on the virtual machine you have just deployed and access its console.
Your network interfaces will be connected to the networks you selected:
You can use CSR 1000v in evaluation mode for learning and practice. Thank you for reading.