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Cisco IOS

Cisco IOS

(also CISCO Internetwork Operating System)

Cisco IOS definition

Cisco IOS, or internetwork operating system, is software that powers Cisco networking devices such as routers and switches. It acts as the brain of the device, controlling its operations and allowing it to communicate and manage network connections. Cisco IOS provides the necessary functions and commands to configure and control the networking device, just like an operating system manages the hardware and software of a computer.

See also: load balancing router, firmware

Services Cisco IOS provides

  • Routing. Cisco IOS helps devices find the best paths to send information to other devices in a network.
  • Switching. Cisco IOS allows devices within a network to communicate with each other, making sure that data from one device gets sent to the right destination device.
  • Security. Cisco IOS acts as a guardian for networks, keeping out unauthorized intruders and protecting sensitive data from hackers and threats.
  • Quality of service (QoS). Cisco IOS ensures that important data, such as video calls or voice messages, are given special treatment to flow smoothly and without annoying delays.
  • Network address translation (NAT). Cisco IOS helps devices with private addresses talk to the wider internet by giving them temporary public addresses.
  • Management and monitoring. Cisco IOS gives network administrators handy tools to keep an eye on how devices are doing, catch any problems, and fix them to keep the network running smoothly.
  • VLANs and trunking. Cisco IOS allows networks to be divided into smaller groups to make things more organized and secure. Trunking lets these groups share the same network connection.
  • Redundancy and high availability. Cisco IOS jumps in when the main system fails, preventing network crashes and keeping things running smoothly.
  • Protocol support. Cisco IOS speaks the different languages that devices use to talk to each other, making sure they can understand and work together.

Further reading

Ultimate digital security