I haven’t done much studying lately and it’s for two reasons. Last week I was on vacation and that was wholly dedicated to my family. Also before that I was busy with interviews for a new job which I’m happy to say that I landed. I will work for a Cisco gold partner mainly with network design and also some firewalling and a bit of wireless. This will be a good avancement in my career.
I’m starting up the labs tomorrow again and I will try to push a little harder during the fall to get close to the lab.
A big congrats goes out to my friend Jason Lunde who is now a CCIE! Way to go Jason!
I haven’t really had the time to do a daily post with CCIE links so from now on I will just call them CCIE links. This link is to a fellow blogger who did a post on OSPF. OSPF might be the most important protocol to know on the lab but certainly in real life. This post describes how to interpret the OSPF database.
I’ve hit a milestone yesterday. 20000 users has viewed my blog, something I wouldn’t have thought was possible when I started it up. The number of readers has increased a lot from the beginning and I hope that more people will find my site. The goal of the site is to finish my own CCIE and while doing so being the #1 blog for CCIE candidates looking for information that is needed to pass the exam. I think that I do have some unique content on here that is hard to find on other sites and I hope I can contribute with more of this stuff.
Many of you will have heard about Groupstudy. Groupstudy runs a few mailing lists for different levels of Cisco certifications, you should join the CCIE one. This requires that you have already passed the written. You should join it for a couple of reasons.
- There are a lot of experts and people that have passed the CCIE
- You can learn by reading other candidates questions
- You learn by asking your own questions
- There is an archive with earlier mails
Definately use Groupstudy as one of your study tools for the CCIE.
Passing the lab is a lot about psychology. You will be put into an environment you have never been in before. You won’t know what the room looks like, what keyboard you will use and there are a lot of unknowns. As one well known CCIE said “We don’t want to do anything for the first time in the lab except pass it.” In my preparations I have taken some measurements to keep these unknowns to a minimum. I am using PuTTY for access since that is used in the R&S lab. I am also using a keyboard with an american layout to be used to finding the keys I will need on the lab. I bought a screen of similar size to the ones used on the lab and I’m not using dual screens even though I prefer that since we only have one screen at the lab. This post at the netcraftsmen talks about the environment of the lab.
To pass the CCIE lab we need to be fast. It is important to be fast in a smart way though, we have not use for mindless speed. We need to know the protocols and in what order to do things to be as effecient as possible. Let me give you an example. When I configure etherchannels I make sure to shutdown both sides first. Then I configure what I want and then I enable the ports at nearly the same time. Why? If you enable one side first and wait too long to do the other side you can risk loops and interfaces behaving badly. You might even need to reboot your switch. So doing this will ensure you have a smooth ride and don’t waste time on troubleshooting things that you don’t need to. Check this link out at IPExpert by Anthony Sequeira that describes how he does things.
Since I use INE I often visit their forum, which is called IEOC. This is the place to ask questions specific to your workbook. There are a lot of CCIE candidates and previous students who are now CCIE’s that are willing to help.
If you are using another vendor then you should use that forum to ask questions. Before asking questions make sure that your question has not already been posted by someone else. Browse through earlier posts or use the search function.
When labbing you will encounter some issues and the forum is the best place to get answers to this.
When studying for the CCIE you need to make a plan. I am following this plan from INE.
The important thing here is not that I’m using INE and you are using IP Expert or another vendor. The important thing is to make a schedule and stick to it. This blogpost at INE describes how to start out with smaller technical labs and then move on to full scale labs. It will also give you some tips on what diagrams you need to draw and how to successfully complete a vol2 lab.
Becoming a CCIE is a lot about gathering information from a lot of sources and read through them and lab for yourself to see how it really works. I’m starting a new section on my blog which will contain a daily link to a site or blog that contains valuable information about topics on the CCIE lab. The links can be about strategy, technology or emulators etc. I will try to make a daily post but may not be able to do posts on everyday.
I will start out with the single most important URL for any CCIE candidate.
This is the URL to the DOCCD. It is the only documentation that is allowed on the lab exam. We need to know this URL inside and out. When you are preparing for the lab you should forget about Google. Learn how to find everything on the DOCCD.