Sunday, July 15, 2012

Free TFTP Server from SolarWinds

I am borrowing a 2600 Cisco router from a good friend of mine so I can start setting up my imageCisco test lab at home. After firing up the 2600 for the first time, executing SHOW VERSION showed that it that had v12.0 of IOS loaded. It was time to upgrade it to the latest and greatest version! However, Windows 7 and Windows 8 do not come with a built in TFTP server to load the IOS software into the router’s flash memory. Since this will only be a short term thing, I didn’t want to bother with loading up a permanent solution on one of my Windows Server virtual machines. There are many different free TFTP servers available, but I settled on SolarWinds’s Free TFTP Server.

SolarWinds TFTP Server is free to download and free to use. The only downside is that you must register to download it. I set it up in just 2 minutes on my Windows 8 PC. There were three very specific things I needed to configure on my Windows 8 PC to get the TFTP server running properly:

  1. This app is locked down to Windows XP to Windows 7 computers. When trying to install it on Windows 8, make sure you ‘shim’ the installer file (.EXE) by right-clicking the installer, choose Properties, click the Compatibility Tab, and change the compatibility to Windows 7.
  2. I needed to add the TFTP program in Windows Firewall as an ‘allowed’ app for my network type (which is HOME).
  3. Lastly, I needed to configure Windows Firewall with Advanced Security to allow inbound UDP connections on port 69 for TFTP connections.

That is it! I have the SolarWinds TFTP Server running perfectly on my Windows 8 PC. As always, feel free to leave a comment below.

**If you are already a SolarWinds customer and have a paid installation of Network Performance Monitor, you may be surprised to know that this same TFTP server software that is included in the default NPM installation!

- Joe