Backing Up a Cisco IOS Configuration to a TFTP Server


Once you have spent ages configuring your Cisco router, you want to make sure that the configurations are backed up, in case you need to replace the hardware or if the configuration is lost.

Now there are multiple ways that you can do this. The way i am going to discuss in this tutorial is how to back up you configuration to a TFT server. The how do download your saved configuration file to the router.

Setting up a TFTP Server

Now Unsurprisingly, first things first. You need to have a TFTP server, set up and configured on your Network. Now there are many applications out there that will enable toy to do this  the one that i have chosen to use has been developed by Solar Winds.
Once you have the TFTP software downloaded on the machine that you intend to use, the next step is to ensure that the server and the router have connectivity

TFTP Server IP address

The above Image is a screen dump from my TFTP server that i set up and we can see the following

IP Address
Subnet Mask

In order for the two devices to have connectivity they need to be in the same address range. However we can test this by logging onto the router and pinging the Server

Ping TFTP Server

As we get a reply – we know the two are talking and that the TFTP server has been set up correctly

Uploading a configuration to the TFTP Server

Now that we have the server configured correctly, the next step is to upload the configuration. This is done via a few easy commands

Log onto the router that you wish to upload the configuration and type the following commands

The Items detailed in red are the parameters that we need to enter, such as the IP address of the server and what we want our file to be called

Now if we refer to the software that is running on the server, we can see that the file has been uploaded

TFTP Upload

We can now see that the Back Up configuration is stored on our server. The location to where the file is saved is determined in the settings that we have setup in the TFTP software. The Start-up Configuration of the Cisco router is now saved to our server

Restoring a Configuration from the Server

Now that we have the configuration stored on our server. What should happen if for some reason we need to restore it, say for example the router became faulty and we had to install new Hardware or if for some reason, we wish to revert back to the configuration, or it was lost

Again, this can be done with a few easy commands. Firstly log onto the router to which we wish to restore the configuration and enter the following commands

Again, the items in red are ones that we need to define, The IP address of the server and the file name that we need to download.

TFTP Download

Again, we can now see by referring to the TFTP software that the configuration has been downloaded to the router. Now in order to save the configuration we need to save the running configuration to startup configuration. The Cisco router is now fully configured

This Tutorial is a brief overview, and subsequently does not go into depth on topics such as IP addressing, Subnet Masking etc… If you have any questions or feedback, then please leave a post

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