minicom. This is a great tool for doing simple console work.
get started with Ubuntu:
sudo apt-get install minicom
Here is a link on configuration and setup.
Basically, minicom -s for initial configuration.
E - Bps/Par/Bits : 9600 8N1
F - Hardware Flow Control : No
G - Software Flow Control : No
Save setup as dfl
Ctrl-a f is the break sequence for password recovery
Ctrl-a z for the help menu, say you want to upload files through the console. I hope you never have to :)