Cisco Packet Tracer 6.2 and GNS3 are two major network simulation software used for certification exam training (Cisco CCNA and CCNP for example) or network feature test without having to buy expensive real world equipment. The two software have been designed to address different needs.
Packet Tracer is a network simulator and embeds only limited real equipment features. GNS3 is a network emulator based on Dynamips and QSEMU running real IOS images, virtual machines, ... The main limitation of GNS3 is the amount of ressources (CPU / memory) available on the PC for running the lab's emulated IOS images and virtual machines for clients & servers simulation.
Packet Tracer 6.2 and GNS3 feature comparison
|General||Cisco Packet Tracer 6.2 |
(simulated IOS features)
(emulated real IOS features)
|Fully functional IOS|| |
Simulated IOS. Partial features
Real IOS images run in virtual environment
|ASA ASDM configuration support|