How to Backup Cisco Router Configuration to TFTP Server & Schedule Automatic Backup of Cisco Router Configuration Using Archive

By | December 30, 2014

Well, we were discussing Cisco device administration guides so far. Cisco backup is vital, whether it is IOS or running-config, in your Network Administration career. Cisco router backup running config is much important while comparing to Cisco IOS software backup since you can get new IOS but won’t be able to get configurations!. Running configuration is unique and where administrators are getting paid for. So in this article I’m gonna show you Cisco configuration backup using SolarWinds TFTP server. By the way who will take regular Cisco config backup? Isn’t it boring and time consuming? Of course it is. Is there any automated backup tools available for auto backup cisco config? Cisco itself provides ‘archive’ commands to do automatic backup Cisco config. Also here I will figure out scheduling automatic backup of cisco router configuration using archive command for every 24 hours.


Important Cisco Device Administration Guides

Backup Cisco Config with SolarWinds TFTP Server Software

SolarWinds TFTP server is my favorite tool for backing up of any Cisco files. Especially it is stable TFTP server tool available compared to others. OK, Let’s get to our point.

Step 1: Prepare TFTP Server
Install and configure SolarWinds TFTP Server. Download link is given below.
Cisco TFTP server download – SolarWinds TFTP Server
Run the TFTP Server

Step 2:
Login to your router (via Console /Telnet /SSH) and enter global configuration mode.

Router#copy running-config tftp:
Address or name of remote host []?
Destination file name [router-config]?
6810 bytes copied in 2.104 secs (3237 bytes/sec)

NB: – Above commands copy the configuration without any extension. Unfortunately Windows machine won’t recognize the file. Whatever, you can use Notepad++ to open those files (right click → Edit with Notepadd++).


Alternatively you can specify a name with .txt extension.

Destination file name [router-config]? Router.txt

This command saves the configuration file as TXT file.

Here I’m giving you a screenshot of one of my remote routers.
copy running-config tftp

What’s the effect of command copy running-config tftp? It let’s you copy running configuration to a TFTP Server.
If you keep an eye on TFTP window, you will be able to see the file transfer logs in the SolarWinds TFTP window as shown below.

The configuration is copied to TFTP root directory (C:\TFTP-Root) without any extension. Use Notepad++ in order to open and view the configuration file.


Cisco Auto Backup Config (Every 24 Hours) Using Archive Command

This is really very handy tool for scheduling Cisco router automatic configuration backup.
What actually ‘archive’ does? It automates the Cisco router configuration backup for a specified interval.


It stores the configuration data regularly after the predefined time period. Time is specified in minutes (1440 minutes= 24 hours)

Router(config-archive)#path tftp://
Router(config-archive)#time-period 1440

NB: – We didn’t mention any file name for auto backup Cisco config file. Here it stores the config files with series of different name and number set (see fig below).

That’s all about Cisco configuration backup!

Well, are you confident to backup and restore Cisco router config? Do practice and use these Cisco commands to save your time.

This information won’t be covered in CCNA classes, in a real environment you will experience and this is vital role in your network administration career.

You may also checkout Cisco configuration professional tutorial.

Hope you guys understood the backup Cisco config process. Please share your thoughts here and don’t forget to like our Facebook page.

One thought on “How to Backup Cisco Router Configuration to TFTP Server & Schedule Automatic Backup of Cisco Router Configuration Using Archive

  1. Sunil

    Nice article…our cisco sw version is 5.0…Seems we can’t use archive command on it
    Is there any other way to backup switch running conf automatically to tftp server…Please help


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