How to Log in to a Network Switch

By Jeff Mason

When you identify the various network switches on a network, you eventually need to gain access to those switches to verify various network settings as well as alter and/or test various network settings. Properly logging in to a network switch, using correct credentials, will allow you to view the switch configuration and, potentially, modify the switch configuration.

Step 1

Go to the DOS command prompt: Click "Start," then click "Run" (for Vista, just click "Start"), type "cmd" into the window that displays and then press "Enter."

Step 2

Telnet to the IP address of the switch to which you want to connect: type "telnet switch-ip-address" (where "switch-ip-address" is the ip address of your switch); and then press "Enter."

Step 3

Enter the username setup for your use on the switch at the "Username:" prompt; and then press "Enter."

Step 4

Enter the password corresponding to your switch user account at the "Password:" prompt; and then press "Enter."

Tips & Warnings

  • Initial switch login typically is in a "non-privileged" mode. You must obtain an "Enable" (i.e., "privileged") password, if you need to perform privileged tasks such as making switch configuration changes. At the switch prompt, after you log in, type "ena" and then press "Enter;" type the "enable" password, and then press "Enter." If you see the "#" prompt, you are now in privileged mode.

References & Resources