Cisco Support Community
Showing results for 
Search instead for 
Did you mean: 
Community Member

Cisco 2950 Athentification failed with password recovery

Hi all,

I have followed the procedure to recover the passwords on a 2950 switch.

I followed the procedure on

When i want to enter the configuration :

Sw1# conf t  (the name is different then Sw1)

i get:  Authentification Failed.

So i can't seem to enter the configuration mode.

Any suggestions are welcome.

Is there also a way to copy the config.text file from the switch to a PC?


Community Member

Re: Cisco 2950 Athentification failed with password recovery

Hi Ronny

This isn't an attempt at an answer I'm afraid. I'd just like to know what happened to the switch after this unsuccessful attempt to reset the password?

Did it eventually boot up and work normally as before?

I am about to try the password recovery steps and am a bit worried as to what state the switch will be in if the recovery fails. I'd like to think that if it didn't work I could restart the switch and it would work as before as I only have a day to work on it before the network has to be available again.

Thanks for any feedback you can provide.



Re: Cisco 2950 Athentification failed with password recovery

Hi Ronny,

Are you in console or vty?

Can you do sw# ?

is the output many pages long?


Don't forget to rate helpful posts.

Re: Cisco 2950 Athentification failed with password recovery

Hi Ronny,

It sounds like you may have missed a step in the recovery process. Make sure you rename the config file from config.text to anything else besides this. If the switch can't find config.text, then it will boot up with a "blank" config and prompt you to go through the inital configuration and have a hostname of "Switch". Hit no to go into the initial configration steps.

Once you do this, copy flash:config.old run

This will load your old config up, then go into config and change your password.

When you do a copy run start, it will recreate config.text and you'll be set.

Re: Cisco 2950 Athentification failed with password recovery

The most likely explanation is that the password-recovery mechanism is disabled. (nasty)

In that case, you can only rebuild the config from scratch.

Alternatively, your switch has aaa configured with command authorization.

When reloading the config, the aaa settings are also re-established.

If not already done so, you may try what happens when the switch is diconnected from the network.

When properly configured, the fact that aaa is unavailable should bring you to a default state in which you have level 15 access.

However, I think it is possible to configure it in such a way that you remain locked out until aaa is available again.

When you have aaa access, this should not be an issue as I presume that you do have proper access rights to this device?



CreatePlease to create content