Finding Tools For Your CCNA Learning: CCNA is a promising field for beginners and freshers that the careers are associated with numerous trending technologies like IoT, RPA, AI, and so on. There are many categories to begin your careers such as routing and switching, cloud, collaboration, cyber ops, data center, industrial, security, service provider, wireless, and CCDA. All of them require various skill sets to find a job in the IT field. It opens opportunities for entry-level jobs in big IT firms. When you begin to learn CCNA, you require some tools for practicing them. Here we are explaining how you should equip yourself with the right tools that can fit your career.

For practicing the CCNA Routing and Switching Certification, the following are the required tools along with their pros and cons.

Options for Switches

If you have never worked in routers or switches before, it is recommended to buy or utilize real hardware to practice with real routers and switches.

Cisco Catalyst 2950T

This tool is called “Layer 2 Switch” and it has everything you require for learning CCNA Routing and Switching. It will be available with 8, 24, or 48 port models and it is the cheap and best option for CCNA learning. But you should know that this switch does not support layer three features.

Cisco Catalyst 3550

This tool acts like 2950 along with routing support. Some other models also can be chosen such as Cisco Catalyst 2960 (advanced of 2950), Cisco Catalyst 3560 (advanced of 3550), and Cisco Catalyst 3750. These tools are varied with their cost with some advanced features. Some of the switches such as Cisco Catalyst 2900XL or Cisco Catalyst 3500XL are not recommended for learning CCNA Routing and Switching as they will not support many features.

Options for Routers

There are affordable routers in the market but two of the following routers are very useful for learning CCNA Routing and Switching.

Cisco 1800 Series

This is a small router and its supports everything you want to practice. It will be available in four various models such as 1811, 1822, 1841, and 1861. Among them, Router 1841 is the best recommendation as it has Fast Ethernet interfaces with two slot models (WICs) to insert them easily for various serial interfaces.

Cisco 2800 Series

This is another great router like the 1800 series and it is called as “rack model”. It can be easily mounted if you plan with a small server.

It will be available in four various models such as 2801, 2811, 2821, and 2851. One of the major cons of this router is a bit noisy than 1800 series routers. Apart from this issue, all the models of this series are good for learning CCNA Routing and Switching.

Options for Flash Memory and RAM

Routers should be chosen with their flash memory and RAM. Flash memory is used to store the OS (Operating System – Cisco IOS) and RAM is used to run Cisco IOS and its processes. Following are the recommendations to choose for your learning of CCNA Routing and Switching.

– Minimum 64MB Flash and 192MB RAM for 1800 series router

– Minimum 128MB Flash and 512MB RAM for 2800 series router

The upgrades of later features are possible and it is also easier.

Options for Cables

Cables are also matters as it is used to connect switches or computer devices. Following are the recommendations for cables.

This is a blue Cisco console cable and it comes with the switch or router and you will need even one for connecting and configuring the devices.

As you know well, this is a USB to the serial port converter and it is required for switching the console cable between the switches. The alternative for this cable is a USB Connector with 4 x RS-232 serial connectors as the below one. It saves the hassle of plugging and unplugging the console cables between switches.

It is required UTP cables for switches and routers.

Make sure you should use crossover cables as it supports the auto-sensing feature. If you are learning CCNA Routing and Switching, it is recommended to learn along with WAN (Wide Area Network) protocols. For that, you will need below DB60 serial cable as it can be used with the WIC 1-T interface.

Apart from them, the following things are recommended to learn CCNA Routing and Switching with practical experience.

Emulator or Simulator

If you want to get familiar with CCNA Routing and Switching practice with Emulator and Simulator as it allows you to run Cisco IOS on your device or mimic the CLI.


This is the popular emulator that runs the Cisco IOS and it is used only to emulate routers but not switches. 3640 or 3725 are the recommended GNS3 emulators.

Cisco VIRL

This is the official emulator and it is a great product for lab practices. It has advantages such as 100% legal, all IOS images available, and it runs routers, switches, and other devices like the Cisco ASA firewall. The cons of this emulator are it requires 8GB of RAM and highly-configured CPUs, also it is pricier with a $199 annual subscription, runs on VMWare, and takes much time for installation.

Packet Tracer

This is a widely used simulator especially for CCNA Routing and Switching studies. It mimics the commands with the output of Cisco IOS. It is not available in the public market as it can only be downloaded by a member of the Cisco Networking Academy.


We hope these secrets will help you to choose CCNA tools for home learning of CCNA Routing and Switching. SLA Jobs is the leading platform to provide the best CCNA Training in Chennai with the above-mentioned updated tools.