I found a link to an interesting video with Kevin Wallace 2x CCIE. He did an interview with a CCIE proctor anonymously and some of the answers really surprised me.
- The proctor chooses the lab you get
- 80% of all candidates fail on any given day on average
- Sometimes the proctors “grow a heart” and relax on the grading
So what surprised me the most is that the proctor chooses the lab, I thought this was a randomized process. Generally you should get a different lab than your previous attempt but there are no guarantees. So if you go back several times you should get a new lab every time until you exhaust the pool of labs.
It was also a bit surprising that some of the proctors could relax a bit on grading if you have been there multiple times (hoping for that ;)). They will definately don’t help you pass if you don’t deserve it but if you were very close on something you might get credit for it which you wouldn’t on your first attempt.
So I’m hoping for some proctor love the next time 😉 What is good to know is that a script does most of the grading and it is results based. So when doing configuration in the lab think how could a script verify this. This could actually help in choosing the most appropiate solution for a task.
8 thoughts on “Interesting facts about the CCIE lab”
so the question is : can you give us some example of answers that a script would like compared to others that it would not like ?
Can’t really think of anything right now but lets say you have a task where you modify priority in OSPF to change which router becomes DR/BDR. How would that be graded? Probably by looking at show ip ospf interface x. Which means that even if you have the right commands you still might miss the points if the election did not happen in the right order. Not sure if a proctor would still give you points but my guess is no.
Sorry I do not understand the right order.If the task restricts you to change priority to achieve that I know only two ways either increase priority on the future DR or decreasing it
on the other Rs,the extreme of this would be to reduce it down to 0 to take them out of the election process .Show ip o i x will show both priority and who is the DR.So the script should note that that specific R is DR and the priority has been changed.In which way in this particular case could I get in trouble ?
That is correct. Changing priority or changing IP is only way of modifiying which router becomes DR. What I meant was that maybe you made sure that the router was DR and then you had to shut an interface or reboot that device and then the BDR would take over as DR. So now even though you have correct configuration there is a risk of loosing points since the election is not preemptive.
I see for what I know the grading system will reboot the Rs and then the DR could change unless the other Rs have a priority 0 in such a case being out of the election process should not become DRs.Am I correct ?
In other words keep into consideration any rebooting at the end that could change my config
unless is made in a way that will not change.
I don’t think the grading system will reboot the routers. In fact from what I’ve heard the grading only takes 5 minutes in all for config. In the CCIE lab is important to only do what is asked, nothing more and nothing less so setting to priority to 0 could be risky unless they asked for it. This is all pure speculation from my part but since the grading is results based I think it makes sense. I was talking about a situation where you are changing SDM profile on switches or something like that and that requires a reboot.
Also, I heard that no proctor is allowed to touch the points if the Script already scores the tasks/tickets with points (Green) and they are allowed to verify and award points only for those tasks/tickets comes with no points(Red)
If you really want some good answers to how the CCIE labs are conducted, graded and given, do a google search for techccie. Techccie is on of the venues you can choose when you are at Cisco Live, which is a CCIE certification facts and helpful hints, and tips. The Techccie is a powerpoint slide presentation that covers more than you will ever want to know about the lab, before taking it. Unfortunately I found this after my first attempt, but most likely will be getting the latest version very quickly.
By the way, as soon as you walk out of the lab, all the candidate lab devices are reloaded.