Support Support Downloads Knowledge Base Juniper Support Portal Community

Knowledge Base

Search our Knowledge Base sites to find answers to your questions.

Ask All Knowledge Base Sites All Knowledge Base Sites JunosE Defect (KA)Knowledge BaseSecurity AdvisoriesTechnical BulletinsTechnotes Sign in to display secure content and recently viewed articles

[EX] Recovering the root password on EX Series switches



Article ID: KB14102 KB Last Updated: 15 Sep 2020Version: 4.0

This article describes how to recover a lost or forgotten root password on EX Series switches.



NOTE: You need physical access to the switch to recover the root password. This is done by direct console access or through a console server to the console port on the EX switch.

To recover the root password, perform the following steps:

  1. Power off your switch by unplugging the power cord or turning off the power at the wall switch.

  1. Insert one end of the Ethernet cable into the serial port on the management device and connect the other end to the console port at the back of the switch.

  1. On the management device, start your asynchronous terminal emulation application (such as Microsoft Windows Hyperterminal) and select the appropriate COM port to use (for example, COM1).

  1. Configure port settings as follows:

  • Bits per second: 9600
  • Data bits: 8
  • Parity: None
  • Stop bits: 1
  • Flow control: None
  1. Power on your switch by plugging in the power cord or turning on the power at the wall switch.

  1. When the following prompt appears, press the Spacebar to access the switch's bootstrap loader command prompt:

Hit [Enter] to boot immediately, or space bar for command prompt.
Booting [kernel] in 1 second...
  1. At the following prompt, type boot -s to start up the system in single-user mode:

loader> boot -s
  1. At the following prompt, type recovery to start the root password recovery procedure:

Enter the full pathname of the shell or recovery for root password recovery or RETURN for /bin/sh: recovery.

A series of messages describe consistency checks, mounting of filesystems, and initialization and checkout of management services. Then the Command Line Interface (CLI) prompt appears.

  1. Enter configuration mode in the CLI:

user@switch> configure
  1. Set the root password, for example:

user@switch# set system root-authentication plain-text-password
  1. At the following prompt, enter the new root password, for example:

New password: juniper1
Re-type the new password:
  1. At the second prompt, re-enter the new root password.

  1. If you have finished configuring the network, commit the configuration.

root@switch# commit
commit complete
  1. Exit configuration mode in the CLI.

root@switch# exit
  1. Exit operational mode in the CLI.

root@switch> exit
  1. At the prompt, enter y to reboot the switch.

Reboot the system? [y/n] y


Modification History:
  • 2018-07-09: Corrected step 9 from "cli" to "configure" to enter configuration mode; made other minor modifications (non-technical)

  • 2020-09-15: Article reviewed for accuracy; no changes required; article valid and relevant


Related Links

Comment on this article > Affected Products Browse the Knowledge Base for more articles related to these product categories. Select a category to begin.

Getting Up and Running with Junos

Getting Up and Running with Junos Security Alerts and Vulnerabilities Product Alerts and Software Release Notices Problem Report (PR) Search Tool EOL Notices and Bulletins JTAC User Guide Customer Care User Guide Pathfinder SRX High Availability Configurator SRX VPN Configurator Training Courses and Videos End User Licence Agreement Global Search