3 Adding a MikroTik Appliance in GNS3

Mathew J. Heath Van Horn, PhD

MikroTik is a Latvian enterprise network equipment manufacturer. Their network hardware is used in enterprise networks throughout the world. Their router operating system software is free to use for non-commercial purposes. We use the MikroTik Cloud Hosted Router (CHR) router operating system throughout this book because we have found that it has many of the same features as other commercial products while also being very reliable while running in the GNS3 working environment.

Learning Objectives

  • Successfully download, install, and run MikroTik Cloud Hosted Router appliance in a GNS3 environment



  • None – this is a preparatory lab that supports other labs in this book


Contributors and Testers


  • Quinton D. Heath Van Horn, 7th Grade
  • David Reese, Mathematics Student, SUNY Brockport
  • Cody Shinkyu Park, Honeywell Software Engineer, ERAU-Prescott Alumni
  • Salvador Morales, Safety Management System Analyst, ERAU-Prescott Alumni
  • Evan Paddock, Cybersecurity Student, ERAU-Prescott
  • Dante Rocca, Cybersecurity Student, ERAU-Prescott
  • Sawyer Hansen, Cybersecurity Student, ERAU-Prescott

Phase I – Installing a MikroTik router

Many learners use MikroTik routers to learn enterprise networking principles.  You will find many instruction sites on the internet using MikroTik in GNS3.


Depiction of the menu that needs to be clicked on.
Figure 12 – MikroTik Router successfully installed to the GNS3 Working Environment
  1. Visit the GNS3 Marketplace at https://www.gns3.com/marketplace/appliances
  2. In the search appliances field, type “MikroTik” (Figure 1)
  3. Navigate to the MikroTik CHR appliance and click on it (Figure 2)
  4. Download the appliance by hitting the Download button
  5. Scroll down to the most recent version of the image and click on the Download link. In this case, we are using the chr-7.7.img (Figure 3)
  6. Navigate to your downloads folder (or wherever you download the files) and unzip the image file
  7. Start GNS3 Workspace
  8. At the GNS Workspace top ribbon bar, go to File and on the submenu click on Import Appliance (Figure 4)
  9. Select the appliance file that you downloaded (Figure 5)
  10. Press the Open button
  11. Select the server type Install the appliance on the GNS3 VM (recommended) and press the Next button (Figure 6)
  12. Accept the default QEMU settings and press the Next button (Figure 7)
  13. Highlight the Appliance Version (in this case we are using version 7.10.1) and you will see the status Missing Files.  To fix this, click on Import (Figure 8)
  14. Navigate to where you unzipped the image file from Step 6 (Figure 9)
  15. Now the status has changed to Ready to Install.  Highlight the Ready to Install and click on Next (Figure 10)
  16. Confirm the installation by pressing Yes
  17. Read the notes, and press Finish (Figure 11)
  18. You will now see the MikroTik router in the Routers Menu. You can drag it to the workspace and start it to make sure it runs (Figure 12)

End of Lab

List of Figures
A depiction of the website
Figure 1 – Searching GNS3 marketplace for MikroTik appliances


A depiction of the website
Figure 2 – Showing the MikroTik CHR appliance on GNS3 marketplace


A depiction of the website
Figure 3 – Downloading the MikroTik router image from GNS3 marketplace


Screenshot of menu selections
Figure 4 – Screenshot of GNS3 Workspace menu selection


Screenshot of commands
Figure 5 – Selecting the appliance to import into GNS3 Workspace


Screenshot of commands
Figure 6 – Configuring the GNS3 Workspace with a MikroTik appliance


Screenshot of commands
Figure 7 – Accept the QEMU settings


Screenshot of commands
Figure 8 – Correct the missing files for the MikroTik router


Screenshot of commands
Figure 9 – Navigate to where the image file was saved after unzipping


Screenshot of commands
Figure 10 – Installing the MikroTik CHR router


Screenshot of commands
Figure 11 – Finish the addition of a MikroTik router to the GNS3 environment


Depiction of the menu that needs to be clicked on.
Figure 12 – MikroTik Router successfully installed to the GNS3 Working Environment



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Mastering Enterprise Networks Copyright © 2024 by Mathew J. Heath Van Horn, PhD is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.

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