Packet Tracer is a cross-platform visual simulation tool designed by Cisco Systems that allows users to create network topologies and imitate modern computer networks. (1)Packet Tracer was previously not available to everyone, but since version seven, has been available to anyone who creates a Network Academy account. (2) The software allows you to create virtual networks without the need of physical hardware. Some of the hardware included are routers, switches, and PC's.
After creating an Network Academy account, you are able to download the software for either 32-bit or 64-bit Linux platforms (Figure 1). Though the site indicates support for Ubuntu 14.04 64-bit, I was able to install on Linux Mint 18.1 64-bit with no issues.
|Figure 1: Linux downloads.|
Click on the download for your system, in my case the 64-bit compressed tar archive. After the download, open the Nemo file manager and right click on the archive, then select Extract Here to un-compress and un-archive to a folder, PacketTracer70. Navigate into the folder and double click on the install bash script file (Figure 2).
|Figure 2: Installation Folder Contents|
|Figure 3: Click on the Run in Terminal button.|
|Figure 4: Accepting the EULA.|
|Figure 5: Choosing the installation directory.|
|Figure 6: Prompting for root access.|
|Figure 7: Creating a symbolic link to Packet Tracer.|
|Figure 8: Running Packet Tracer|
|Figure 9: Default save location.|
|Figure 10: Network Academy login.|
Now you can design and test your own network with Packet Tracer (Figure 11).
|Figure 11: A running Packet Tracer|