The Cisco FMC (Firepower Management Center) is a distributed management GUI for controlling a large number of FTD appliances. This is how Firepower is going to be managed rather than individually in large scale deployments. We can use this in our GNS3 simulations, however it can be very resource intensive like the FTDv and advisable to run under a native Linux installation. The FMCv will run under KVM requiring either a native Linux install as we have covered previously or the GNS3 VM on Windows or macOS.


Gather our files

Before we can import the appliance we will need the latest appliance file from the GNS3 Appliance Registry and the desired Cisco FMCv .qcow image from Cisco. Like with the FTDv this will require a Cisco CCO with the correct support entitlements.

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  • FMCv Appliance Template – This is the appliance template from the GNS3 github and needs to be save with the .gns3a extension.
  • Cisco_Firepower_Mgmt_Center_Virtual_KVM-6.3.0-83.qcow2 – This is the latest full FMCv release at the time of writing this article and can be obtained from the Cisco Download site with a valid login.

Importing the new Appliance

We will begin with the same basic process as the VyOS Appliance with our files in the Downloads folder. Start by clicking on import appliance from the file menu in GNS3 and select the FTDv template to being the import.

Once selected the import process will display a description of this appliance as well as some information on its architecture.

Since we are running a native linux install we will be running the appliance directly on the local machine. If you are running under Windows or MacOS then you will need to deploy it to the GNS VM as discussed previously.

The server requirements should pass assuming you have a healthy install and were able to import theASAv and FTDv appliances.

Now we can see that the template, at the time of this article, does not detect installation files as it does not support 6.3.0 (83). In this case we will create a custom version in order to proceed with the import.

Start by clicking on Create a new version and then name in the version appropriately. In this case 6.3.0 (38).

Once the version has been created navigate to the .qcow required beneath it and the click import to go locate the .qcow file. By default GNS3 will start the section window in your downloads directory. If the .qcow is not in that location then navigate to its location and then select it.

With the image imported we can proceed by highlighting our version and then clicking next. When the popup appears double check you have named the version correctly and then click yes to proceed.

On the next screen ensure the correct qemu binary has been auto selected. In the case of the FMCv this will x86_64 and then click next to proceed.

The next page will be the summary of the newly imported appliance. These values can be modified after you’ve completed the import or on a per device basis. I would not advise making any changes to the FMCv template as it does have an honest requirement for all of those resources being a heavy appliance.

The final page before you finish will provide you with some basic details on the FMCv appliance. Please do note the default information here as this is more of a server appliance than a network appliance. The use of the Webterm Docker appliance can be useful for configuration of the FMCv. Click finish to complete the import process.


Long Boot

Much like the FTDv the FMCv will take a long time to perform its 1st boot up process. On my workstation this took about 15 minutes and it is going to be one of the heavier appliances that you might be running. Luckily you should only need one of them unless you are running very complex simulations.


Conclusion

The FTCv appliance is now ready for use in your simulations. If you want to read more articles on GNS3 then click here!