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How to console into Cisco Aironet Access Points and Bridges


Connect a nine-pin, straight-through DB-9 serial cable to the RS-232 serial port on the access point and to the COM port on a computer.Set up a terminal emulator to communicate with the access point. Use the following settings for the terminal emulator connection:

  • 9600 baud  

  • 8 data bits  

  • None parity  

  • 1 stop bit  

  • Xon/Xoff  Flow control .If xon/xoff flow control does not work, use no flow control.


  1. You can use either a crossover cable or straight through cable.

  2. Make sure you choose the correct COM port(Whether COM1 or COM2) on the software. 

  3. Even then if you are having trouble accessing the device after setting the terminal program , it is possible that the device is not set to the defaults. Click on Restore Default button to restore the default settings. It might help to try different settings, starting with the baud rate.

  4. Reset the access point by holding the Reset button while you unplug and replug the Power.

  5. Try a different power cable.

For more information on the different device models refer the following URLs

Problem Type

Cannot console or telnet or GUI into a device



Access point

Community Member

After much hair pulling and frustrating troubleshooting, I can advise that some USB/serial adaptors will NOT ever talk to some Cisco access points, but work perfectly well on routers and switches. There is something weird about how the USB adaptors present a serial interface compared to other USB serial adaptors.

I've found the Cisco 1140 series of WAP's fall into this category - they just don't like some USB serial adaptors. I also found an Exterity video/IPTV box that had the same issue - worked on one brand of cable, not on another. I suspect it's something to do with the UART chipset they are using in the USB/serial adaptor.

So quit fiddling with flow control and other settings, you are wasting your time, you just need another cable that works. I strongly suspect you need one with the FTDI chipset in it.