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Networking Lab Simulation Using Virtual Technologies

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2008 Annual Conference & Exposition


Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

Publication Date

June 22, 2008

Start Date

June 22, 2008

End Date

June 25, 2008



Conference Session

Computer ET Innovation

Tagged Division

Engineering Technology

Page Count


Page Numbers

13.926.1 - 13.926.8



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Paper Authors

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Chengcheng Li East Carolina University

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Lee Toderick East Carolina University

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Peng Li East Carolina University

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Tijjani Mohammed East Carolina University

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Philip Lunsford East Carolina University

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NOTE: The first page of text has been automatically extracted and included below in lieu of an abstract

Networking Lab Simulation using Virtual Technologies


Rapid advances in technologies and the limited budgets always hinder the universities from upgrading their networking lab equipment to a state-of-the-art level. As one of the regional Cisco Networking Academies, East Carolina University spends a large amount of funding purchasing new equipment for the ever changing Cisco networking academy curriculums. Reducing the demand for real lab equipment and deploying simulation based labs can effectively mitigate the current conflicts between the budgets and the requirement of lab availability.

The purposes of this paper are 1. comparing Cisco networking simulation software applications that are available on the market, 2. highlighting the advantages of the novel virtual technology based simulation software over the traditional simulation software, 3. providing a complete solution for teaching networking labs using virtual technology including hardware setup and connection, remote access configuration and software installation, and 4. designing lab topology using DynampisGUI to simulate a full rack of Cisco equipment on a single PC.


Laboratory work and hands-on experience are critical aspects of engineering learning. At Technology Systems Department of East Carolina University, we offer a unique ICT (Information and Computer Technology) program which is different from the traditional computer science curriculums. The ICT program emphasizes on delivering hands-on experience and teaches students practical skills that can be used right after they graduate. Many courses within the ICT program provide training for the students to obtain the equivalent industry certificates. The contents and quality of these courses attract a large number of students into the program. The student enrollment was increased rapidly during the past three years, making the ICT program the largest program in the College.

In the meantime, distance education (DE) sections constitute an increasing portion of the student enrollment of the ICT program. Studies have shown that this trend will continue in the future years. To deliver hands-on experience to the online teaching, with a quality equivalent to what students can get from the face-to-face laboratory environment, has been an eminent requirement for further expanding our DE program.

A number of studies on remote computer networking and technology laboratory have been done in recent years. These studies can be classified into four categories.

1. Remote access system and remote lab architecture design Some studies1, 2, 3 intend to create remote access methods for the students to join their local machines to the remote labs so that the lab resources can be utilized. VPN is usually used to allow the users to setup a tunnel in the public Internet to transmit information securely in the

Li, C., & Toderick, L., & Li, P., & Mohammed, T., & Lunsford, P. (2008, June), Networking Lab Simulation Using Virtual Technologies Paper presented at 2008 Annual Conference & Exposition, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. 10.18260/1-2--3937

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