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1.

Download the ASA 8.42 files (asa842-initrd.gz and asa842-vmlinuz) for GNS3 from a
reputable source (I got mine from http://www.mediafire.com/download.php?
l010dd0c1nayf0d)

2.

Open Edit -> Preferences -> Qemu and click the ASA tab

3.

Enter an Identifier name I used asa842

4.

Enter 1024 in RAM

5.

Enter the following for Qemu Options:


-vnc none -vga none -m 1024 -icount auto -hdachs 980,16,32

6.

Enter the paths where you placed the files from step 1 into the designated boxes for Initrd
and Kernel

7.

Enter the following for Kernel cmd line:


-append ide_generic.probe_mask=0x01 ide_core.chs=0.0:980,16,32 auto nousb
console=ttyS0,9600 bigphysarea=65536

8.

Leave all other options at defaults

9.

Click the Save button then click OK

10. Add an ASA to a new project/topology and start it (a terminal window should appear if
you used the defaults for the GNS3 install on Windows 7, then the terminal emulator will be
putty)
11. Once the ASA is up, enter enable and then enter the following to activate features (these
activation keys might take a long time to apply meaning ~5-15 minutes, so be patient):
activation-key 0x4a3ec071 0x0d86fbf6 0x7cb1bc48 0x8b48b8b0 0xf317c0b5
activation-key 0xb23bcf4a 0x1c713b4f 0x7d53bcbc 0xc4f8d09c 0x0e24c6b6
12. Add a loopback adapter to Windows:
Open a command prompt as Administrator
Enter hdwwiz.exe to open the Add Hardware Wizard
Once the Add Hardware Wizard is open, click Next
Choose Install the hardware that I manually select from a list (Advanced) and click Next
Select Network adapters and click Next
Select Microsoft and Microsoft Loopback Adapter under Manufacturer and Network
Adapter respectively, then click Next
Reboot
13. After reboot, add an ASA to a topology and start it
14. Add a Cloud Object to the topology and right-click to Configure, selecting the name you
used for the Cloud Object probably C1 if its the first Cloud Object and you didnt rename
it
15. Select the loopback adapter that you created in Step 12 and click the Add button
16. Add an Ethernet switch to the topology and draw a direct connection from the switch to the
ASA and switch to the Cloud Object
17. In the ASA console:
config t
int gi 0

ip address 10.10.10.1 255.255.255.0


nameif management
no shut
18. Open Network and Sharing Center in Windows and change the IP of the loopback adapter to
10.10.10.2/24.
19. Ping the Windows loopback adapter from the ASA firewall to test connectivity.
20. If you dont already have a tftp server installed, then install one. I use the free one from
Solarwinds, but there are a few other good options.
21. If you dont already have the ASDM, then download it from Cisco or another reputable
source.
22. In the ASA console, copy the ASDM bin file to flash on the ASA:
copy tftp://10.10.10.2/asdm-711.bin flash
23. Set the ASA to load the ASDM during the next boot
config t (if youre not already in config mode)
asdm image flash:asdm-711.bin
http server enable
http 10.10.10.2 255.255.255.255 management
username <user of your choice> password <password of your choice> privilege 15
24. Reboot the ASA to ensure the ASDM image is loaded during boot.
25. Browse to https://10.10.10.1 using the browser of your choice and click the Install ASDM
Launcher button to download and install the ASDM app from the ASA.
26. Enjoy!
Note: Just for giggles, I ran through these exact instructions on my now Windows 8.1 laptop running
GNS3 0.8.6 all-in-one and it worked without a hitch! For those running into networking problems
probably cant ping the loopback from the ASA or vice versa check Windows Firewall and make sure
the IP addresses you use are not in use on other segments in your own routed network