This is a review of the CCIE command memorizer. Firstly, I did not pay anything for the product, David let me try it out so I could write a blogpost about it and he has a chance to respond to my remarks. That doesn’t mean that I am afraid of critizing issues that I find with it, this review will be as objective as possible. The CCIE command memorizer is developed by David Bombal, CCIE # 11023. He runs the website ConfigureTerminal.com and a lot of different applications are available there like the CCIE command memorizer and config generators.
When purchasing the CCIE command memorizer you will get some additional products as a bonus. Lets start by going through these.
Cool IOS Commands
This is an e-book with useful commands in the IOS. As a quite experienced engineer I know almost all of these already but they can be very useful if you haven’t seen them before. Some things you will find in this e-book.
- How to use the do command
- Searching for text in show run with / and + and –
- How to write aliases
- Setting the terminal length to zero
- Using regular expressions
- Ping and traceroute syntax
Overall a good product since it is included anyway but if you are well versed in IOS you will recognize most of these.
MPLS command memorizer
The MPLS command memorizer is developed for the MPLS exam included in the CCIP
certification but can also be used to prepare for the CCIE. When using the MPLS
command memorizer you will see a network diagram in Visio style and then
the tasks required to finish the section. The configuration is done in a virtual PuTTY
terminal. A task could be setting up BGP peering sessions and activating the peer
under the right address-family. If you need a hint you can enter an Y on the
righthand side and the correct command to be used will be shown. The program is
divided into different areas like “MPLS basic infrastructure”, “VPN configuration”,
“PE/CE static routing” and so on. This is good because it gives you the chance
to practice in the areas that you are weak. It is a good product and it has its
use but don’t expect it to replace Dynamips, they fill different roles.
BSCI command memorizer
This exam is now named ROUTE but most of the content is the same. I’ve been a
CCNP for a couple of years and I’m doing the CCIE now so I don’t have that much
use for this program but it works in the same way as the other two. If you are
doing the CCNP this is a good product. It will show you a network diagram and
the tasks that you need to complete. It contains labs for all the different routing
CCIE command memorizer
This is the reason I got interested in the product since I am studying for the
CCIE. Every day I have a 40 minute commute one way to work and I spend that
time studying. I wanted a way to keep labbing fresh and running the full
CCIE topology in Dynamips on my laptop is not an option.
The program is divided into different sections. Except for the labs there is a
“CCIE quick fire” and a “DocCD shortcuts section”. The CCIE quick fire is a
question bank with short answers. A question could be what timer is used
for a routing protocol or what the AD is for a protocol and the questions are
divided into different sections. Most of the questions are good but some feel
a little overkill and out of context, like answering fibre lengths for different
standards. Could be useful for the written but even that is questionable,
still it’s not a bad thing to know “too much”.
The DocCD section shows where to find the different technologies used for
the CCIE. Some of the links seem broken but you can also see how you can
find the links by navigation to switches -> LAN Switches and so on. A very
good idea but an update of this section would be nice.
Then we have the main section that is labs. Some of the lab sections also
have questions, an example would be “Assigned Multicast addresses” for IPv6
and the answer is FF00::/8. This is a quite nice feature I think because even
though we are practicing for the lab we still need to know the theory behind.
There is a lot of labs available, probably hundreds. When you type into the
virtual PuTTY terminal there is no option to use the questionmark to find
out available commands. If this is a good thing or not is up to you, this will
force you to learn the commands which might be a good thing.
If you want to see what the program looks like and the structure of it please
check out Davids website. Overall I feel it is a useful product if you have the
right expectations for it. This does not replace Dynamips in any way, this
is the first thing you need to understand but it can be a good sidekick.
Lastly here are some pros and cons with the product.
- Fast to setup, no need to develop topologies
- Doesn’t require a fast computer to run
- No need for a Internet connection
- A LOT of labs available
- You get extra products when you buy the CCIE command memorizer
- Helps with retention of commands
- Good for short sessions when just setting up Dynamips would take more time than you have
- Not full support for abbreviated commands
- No context sensitive help, might not be a con, depends on personal opinion
- Commands must be entered in exact order
- Some tasks might be a bit repititive and maybe the IP-addressing should change to not memorize addresses
- Would be nice with messages in console when peerings come up and maybe some basic show commands
- Product updates? How often is the product updated? Some pages have a copyright from 2008
Overall it is a useful product and the prize is 150$ and then you also get the other
3 products. If you have the right expectations before buying it I don’t think you will
be disappointed. Regarding updates I was told that the product will be updated in
a couple of months.