I have expanded my home lab to include real cisco gear. I now have:
I put all of this gear into a 12U rack. I also added the Synology DS-412+ NAS to provide backup support for the wife’s and my laptops as well as being an ISCSI target for my Esxi host.
I want to get another router for use as a Frame Switch and I needed to get a console server but couldn’t justify spending the bucks to get another router and NM-16A card right now. I would like to have a Opengear IM4200, but that also was outside of my budget. I searched Google for a terminal server and discovered many articles that showed how to set up a raspberry PI as a console server. Well, I have a raspberry Pi and I have a serial USB adapter how hard could that be to set it up?
I mainly followed the instructions from Network lessons Network Lessons> and Lesser-Evil among others. I downloaded and installed ser2net on my Pi and was successful in getting it to work. So I went looking for inexpensive USB Serial adapters and USB hub with 8 ports or more. I’m a customer of Monoprice so I thought I would start there, I was able to find USB Serial adapters with the prolific PL2303 chipset and a 24 port USB hub. I also ordered enough CAT6 cabling to connect up the routers and switches.
Next time I will discuss my experience with the console Pi.