Ultimate Tool List for Network Technicians

“Better to have, and not need, than to need, and not have.”

This is a list of items that you may find in a tech’s backpack or tool bag. Depending on what you work on, you may not need more than half the items!

Big Items

Small Electronics

  • Extra Laptop Power Supply – One in the bag, one at the desk!
  • USB-Serial Adapter – Tripp-Lite Keyspan – The really cheap ones tend to fail at the worst times.
  • Fiber Optic Locator – Get one with a pouch! – Higher the mW the better! Get THIS also.

Cables and Connectors

  • Null Modem Serial RS232 Cable (DB9 F/F) – Tripp-Lite makes nice ones
  • Cisco Console Cable – Get a few. – Keep a couple in the bag. Optionally get one with USB/FTDI built in.
  • Crossover Adapter – They come in cool colors. – Ya never know…
  • Rollover Adapter – Get one. – Ya never know…
  • RJ45 (8P8C) Loopback – Buy one.Or make one.
  • Fiber Optic Loopback – Buy one. – Or make one if you have to tools…
  • CAT6/7 RJ45 (8P8C) Patch Cables – Get nice ones or odd colored ones. – These are the cables that YOU use personally and don’t install at a site.
  • C14 to 5-15R Power Adapter – 1ft is fine. – For when you’re in that unfortunate situaton.
  • Cell Phone charger – Or just the usb cable.


Media/Boot Disks


  • SSH Client – you must choose, but choose… wisely.
    • SecureCRTNot Free. Tabs, scripting, tftp server? oh yes. Worth the $. – optionally get it packaged with SecureFX.
    • MobaXtermFree-ish. MORE than an tabbed SSH client: RDP, VNC, TFTP/HTTP Server, FTP/SFTP client AND server… wow. Free to use with limits. Worth the $ for unlimited.
    • mRemoteNGFREE. Tabbed remote connections: SSH, RDP, VNC, rlogin…
    • SuperPuTTYFREE. WHAT YEAR IS IT? *sigh* …if you NEED to use putty for some psychological reason, use this, also theres CONEMU that you could use with KiTTY.
  • Notepad++ – A proper tabbed text editor and syntax highlighter. Each time someone uses Notepad, a kitten dies.
  • VS Code – For some serious code editing.
  • GNS3 – Test network configurations before implementing them.
  • iPerf – Measure bandwidth.
  • Cygwin – Your fav linux tools on Windoze.
  • PingPlotter – There’s a free version…
  • mturoute – Measure MTU at each hop… omg so kewl!
  • Nmap and Zenmap – Discover and audit your network…
  • Wireshark – Sniff it out.
  • TCPView – A fancy “netstat” – Check port use and see what the heck is going on.
  • 7zip – Zip it up.
  • Ninite – Install many programs at once!
  • Recuva – There’s a free version that works well!
  • f.lux – For those late nights…. save your eyeballs!
  • WinSCP – FTP/SFTP/WebDAV/SCP client…
  • HFS – HTTP File Server – Instant simple HTTP File server…
  • Angry IP Scanner – Scan those IPs like a madman… triggers some anti-virus programs.
  • Visio – Be careful to not let this application consume your life. – Get schooled.Get stencils and templates.
  • VLC – Plays everthing…
  • (Wireless) WiFi Analyzer – WiFi Analyzer (Free) OR Last free verison of inSSIDer
  • (Funsies) Emulators – Search em. – NES, SNES, etc.
  • Finally, LaunchPad of course.  😉



 Other Items



Additional Items (Keep on-hand in case they are needed)

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