Use Mac Terminal app for Cisco console access

Rather than buy a costly terminal emulator application such as ZOC or SecureCRT for basic console access to Cisco devices, you can use the built-in Terminal application to access Cisco devices via console connection.

You will need a USB Serial adapter and device drivers.

After installing the device drives and connecting the USB Serial adapter to your Mac, we need to determine the tty device name associated to the USB Serial adapter. Open a terminal window and type the following command to generate a directory listing of all available tty devices. Find the device that matches the USB Serial device you have connected.

ls /dev/tty*

From the output we find that the device name of our USB Serial device is ‘tty.PL2303-00001004’. The actual device name in your scenario will likely be different.

We’ll now take the device name and execute the following command to load a console session via the USB serial device.

screen /dev/tty.PL2303-00001004

NOTE: You can log session output to a file by including the argument -L. Log files are written to the user’s root directory are named screenlog.X, where X is the version of the log file.

screen -L /dev/tty.PL2303-00001004

NOTE: To use a specific baud rate for the connection, such as 9600, append the rate to the end of the command.

screen -L /dev/tty.PL2303-00001004 9600

This will open a console connection to the connected device. Press ENTER twice to activate the connection.

Once connected, you can terminate the console session by pressing ctrl-a, followed by ctrl-|, then ‘y’.