How to Integrate GNS3 with VMware Workstation

When designing a project with GNS3, you can make more detailed network topologies using virtual machines/computers.

How to Integrate GNS3 with VMware Workstation

How to Add VMware Virtual Machine on GNS3

To add virtual computers to the GNS3 simulator software, you must first install VMware on your system.

Virtual Network Editor software is also installed while installing the program. With this software, you can create virtual adapters and add virtual pcs to the GNS3 program using VMnets.

You can think of VMnets that you create as virtual switches. You can also call these VMnets a network card.

How to Connect GNS3 to VMware Workstation

Now follow the steps below to add two virtual machines running VMware to the network topology and connect to the Router.

   Step 1

After running the GNS3 program, design a network like in the image below.

Connecting a Virtual Machine to a Switch

   Step 2

After creating the topology, open the Virtual Network Editor and create a new VMnet. Next, configure the IP address block of the VMnet you have created as 192.168.8.0/24.

To integrate GNS3 with VMware, you need to set VMnet as Host-Only.

VMware Virtual Network Editor

   Step 3

The VMnet you create will be identified in the Network and Sharing Center of your host computer. VMware Network Adapter You must configure the TCP/IP settings of VMnet.

Double-click on VMnet to open its settings.

VMnet3 Adapter

   Step 4

When the Properties window opens, select TCP/IPv4 from the options here, and then click the Properties button.

Internet Protocol Verison 4 (TCP/IPv4)

   Step 5

In the TCP/IPv4 properties window, type an IP address from the IP address block that you defined for VMnet.

Manual IP Address Assignment

   Step 6

Press Alt + F4 to restart your computer for the changes to take effect, and then click OK.

Restarting the Computer

   Step 7

After restarting your computer, turn on GNS3 again and run the computers again. Then, right-click on Host1 that you added to the network topology and click Configure.

Host1 Configure

   Step 8

In the Host1 Configuration window, select VMnet3 in the Ethernet tab, and then click OK.

Configuring the Host1 Adapter Setting

   Step 9

Set Host2 as VMnet3 and then click OK.

Configuring the Host2 Adapter Setting

   Step 10

After you run your virtual machines, you must configure the network adapter settings as Host-Only (VMnet).

Select VMnet3 (Host-Only) in the Custom Virtual Network option as shown in the image below, and click OK to save the settings.

Windows 8.1 Host-Only

   Step 11

In the same way, configure the other virtual machine as VMnet3.

Windows 10 Host-Only

   Step 12

After running the Windows 8.1 machine because you set the IP address range of VMnet3 to 192.168.8.0/24 in the Virtual Network Editor settings, change the IP address to 192.168.8.5 and save the settings.

Network and sharing center

   Step 13

Change the Windows 10 virtual machine IP address setting to 192.168.8.10.

Assigning a Manual IP Address to Windows 10

   Step 14

Ping from Windows 8.1 machine to Windows 10 to test the network connection.

Ping with CMD

   Step 15

Likewise, test the network connection by pinging from Windows 10 to Windows 8.1.

Ping with CMD

   Step 16

Assign the 192.168.8.1 IP address to the FastEthernet0/0 interface of the Cisco Router by following the instructions below.

R1# conf t
R1(config)# interface fastethernet0/0
R1(config-if)# ip address 192.168.8.1 255.255.255.0
R1(config-if)# no shutdown
R1(config)# end

 
Configuring the Cisco Router

   Step 17

Virtual computers can communicate seamlessly between themselves, but if this process fails when pinging the Cisco Router from the VMs, the Switch added to GNS3 must be configured.

Open the settings by double-clicking on SW1 and change the EtherType values ​​of Port 2 and 3 as in the image below.

Setting the Switch

   Step 18

Ping the Router from the virtual computers again, and test the network connection.

Ping from Virtual Machine to the Router

   Step 19

Ping the Cisco Router from the Windows 10 virtual machine.

As you can see, both virtual machines were able to ping the Cisco Router successfully.

Ping from VM to the Router

   Step 20

Now let’s test the ability to connect from virtual machines by enabling telnet on the router.

R1# conf t
R1(config)# line vty 0 4
R1(config-line)# login local
R1(config-line)# exit
R1(config)# username cisco privilege 15 password cisco123
R1(config)# end

 
Enabling Telnet on the Router

   Step 21

To establish a telnet connection to the Cisco Router via Windows, you must enable the Telnet Client service. After activating the Telnet client, open the command prompt, type the telnet 192.168.8.1 command and press Enter.

telnet 192.168.8.1

   Step 22

You can examine the successful connection of a Telnet to the Cisco Router from the Windows 8.1 VM in the following image.

Typing Telnet User Information

   Step 23

To make a Telnet connection from the Windows 10 VM to the Router, execute telnet 192.168.8.1 at the command prompt.

Connecting to Telnet from Windows 10

   Step 24

As soon as you press Enter, the connection to the Router will be established. After you type the user name and password that you created, you can now manage the Router from the virtual machine.

Telnet Connection Successful

   Step 25

You can check from the following image that the router has successfully connected with telnet.

Accessing the Router with Telnet

   Step 26

In the router console, execute the show line command and check the existing sessions.

show line command

How to Use Virtual Machines on GNS3 ⇒ Video

To use virtual machines in the simulator program, you can watch the video below and also subscribe to our YouTube channel to support us!

   Final Word


Finally, you can easily add a virtual computer you created on VirtualBox to GNS3. Thanks for following us!

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