What to study after CCNP? Unique situation.

neal32neal32 Member Posts: 11 ■□□□□□□□□□
Hey Guys,

I'm a CCNA certified Network Engineer. I passed my CCNP Route Oct 2012, quit my job in Mar 2013 and went on a year long sabbatical. Got back home, decided it wasn't time to settle yet so I left for another year travelling. Last time I justified not studying by learning Spanish. Anyway this time I'm going to finish off the rest of CCNP ASAP, pretty much ready to sit the switch test, but going to study for 3-4 more weeks, due to the test centre being 500km away in another country. Knock over TSHOOT, then.....?

I'm thinking CCNA Voice as I have experience working with CUCM, CME and PBX's, but I only have 2 x 3560 and a 2940 with no possibility to really build a lab.

So, the question I pose to the forum, what would you study in my situation? I have lottttttts of time (I can only surf for a couple of hours in the morning before I get tired, then I'm free to study), limited physical equipment and a pretty strong motivation.

I understand that 2 years of travelling isn't going to look too flash on my CV, so I might as well fill it in with some certs.

Cheers,

Neal

P.S Pic related, it's my ghetto Peruvian switch lab (Was a nightmare getting them back after customs seized them.......also $90)

Comments

  • RouteMyPacketRouteMyPacket Member Posts: 1,104
    neal32 wrote: »
    Hey Guys,

    I'm a CCNA certified Network Engineer. I passed my CCNP Route Oct 2012, quit my job in Mar 2013 and went on a year long sabbatical. Got back home, decided it wasn't time to settle yet so I left for another year travelling. Last time I justified not studying by learning Spanish. Anyway this time I'm going to finish off the rest of CCNP ASAP, pretty much ready to sit the switch test, but going to study for 3-4 more weeks, due to the test centre being 500km away in another country. Knock over TSHOOT, then.....?

    I'm thinking CCNA Voice as I have experience working with CUCM, CME and PBX's, but I only have 2 x 3560 and a 2940 with no possibility to really build a lab.

    So, the question I pose to the forum, what would you study in my situation? I have lottttttts of time (I can only surf for a couple of hours in the morning before I get tired, then I'm free to study), limited physical equipment and a pretty strong motivation.

    I understand that 2 years of travelling isn't going to look too flash on my CV, so I might as well fill it in with some certs.

    Cheers,

    Neal

    P.S Pic related, it's my ghetto Peruvian switch lab (Was a nightmare getting them back after customs seized them.......also $90)

    So passing a few exams and getting a title means you truly know the technology and can apply it in a production environment? I'd focus on making sure my paper skills translate to real world. Why chase paper? Especially Voice..if you want to be a Voice Engineer and that's the thing you just "get" or love..go for it. Otherwise, why?

    I don't think you should "fill in gaps with certs"..makes no sense and its paper chasing that will do nothing for you. Sure, you might make it to the table but what happens when you are doing a technical interview that encompasses R/S and Voice? paper won't help you there..again I would personally focus on landing a position that would help me build my real world skills and make my CCNP title legit.
    Modularity and Design Simplicity:

    Think of the 2:00 a.m. test—if you were awakened in the
    middle of the night because of a network problem and had to figure out the
    traffic flows in your network while you were half asleep, could you do it?
  • neal32neal32 Member Posts: 11 ■□□□□□□□□□
    I have job experience, I was working in Networking for 6 years. My last position was as a Network Engineer for a big mining company where I was working with R+S and voice on a daily basis. I ,as part of a team, managed 1000's of routers and switches, up to Nexus 7k size.

    The why, is to basically make it easier to get another job when I get back. I wouldn't say I love networking, but I don't mind it and it pays well, allowing me to live the life I want. And the voice track because I have PBX experience and also a lot of time working with CME and CUCM. Also security is boring to me.

    Who would you employ? A CCNA guy with real world experience but unemployed for 2 years, or a guy with the same job experience, the same lapse in employment but with a CCNP with CCNA voice and working towards a CCVP?
  • fredrikjjfredrikjj Member Posts: 879
    So passing a few exams and getting a title means you truly know the technology and can apply it in a production environment? I'd focus on making sure my paper skills translate to real world. Why chase paper?

    I personally find this point of view nonsensical. Just because you've studied for and passed an exam doesn't mean that you think that you are hot **** and know how to deploy something it in a production evironment. However, it sure beats not having studied the technology at all. It IS possible to get certifications and still have the self awareness to realize that you probably wouldn't be very effective in real life.
    I don't think you should "fill in gaps with certs"..makes no sense and its paper chasing that will do nothing for you. Sure, you might make it to the table but what happens when you are doing a technical interview that encompasses R/S and Voice? paper won't help you there..again I would personally focus on landing a position that would help me build my real world skills and make my CCNP title legit.

    You're being way too categorical here. For example, I've only very briefly touched OSPF in a production environment (pasted in some configs), but I've studied it intensely for CCNP and recently at the the "CCIE level". The idea that this has done nothing for me and is just "paper chasing" is ridiculous.
  • wallpaper_01wallpaper_01 Senior Member Member Posts: 226 ■■■□□□□□□□
    I would go for voice, like you said you have experience and this will reinforce that. If you have lots of time, absolutely go for more certs. Better to do that than nothing at all! But yeah CCNP then CCNA Voice sounds like the right track for you. Good luck :)
  • RouteMyPacketRouteMyPacket Member Posts: 1,104
    neal32 wrote: »
    I have job experience, I was working in Networking for 6 years. My last position was as a Network Engineer for a big mining company where I was working with R+S and voice on a daily basis. I ,as part of a team, managed 1000's of routers and switches, up to Nexus 7k size.

    The why, is to basically make it easier to get another job when I get back. I wouldn't say I love networking, but I don't mind it and it pays well, allowing me to live the life I want. And the voice track because I have PBX experience and also a lot of time working with CME and CUCM. Also security is boring to me.

    Who would you employ? A CCNA guy with real world experience but unemployed for 2 years, or a guy with the same job experience, the same lapse in employment but with a CCNP with CCNA voice and working towards a CCVP?


    I would hire whoever could make it past the technical interview. I don't care about your paper when it comes to my environment, paper can't resolve and or improve infrastructure. However a competent engineer can, problem is finding one. :)

    I'm just saying, if you somehow made it across my desk and posted that you have R/S and Voice, I would do a technical interview that would cover both areas and within 5 minutes I would have my answer. Hey's it's IT...to each his own...get all the certs you wish...good luck.
    Modularity and Design Simplicity:

    Think of the 2:00 a.m. test—if you were awakened in the
    middle of the night because of a network problem and had to figure out the
    traffic flows in your network while you were half asleep, could you do it?
  • xnxxnx Do they matter? UKMember Posts: 464 ■■■□□□□□□□
    Gotta agree here, saying it how it is.

    Obviously 'RouteMyPacket' seems to be in a managerial position and maybe more than well versed in networking, but to me he seems quite rude even by standards.
    Getting There ...

    Lab Equipment: Using Cisco CSRs and 4 Switches currently
  • neal32neal32 Member Posts: 11 ■□□□□□□□□□
    I would hire whoever could make it past the technical interview. I don't care about your paper when it comes to my environment, paper can't resolve and or improve infrastructure. However a competent engineer can, problem is finding one. :)

    I'm just saying, if you somehow made it across my desk and posted that you have R/S and Voice, I would do a technical interview that would cover both areas and within 5 minutes I would have my answer. Hey's it's IT...to each his own...get all the certs you wish...good luck.

    I appreciate your point of view and I also believe that a technical interview trumps "paper" however, to dismiss the knowledge that you gain from a certification, especially a Cisco one, I don't agree with that.

    More importantly, in Australia anyway, when you apply for a job 98% of the time you have to go through a recruitment agency and they have absolutely no idea about networking most of the time, they just check that you have the relevant qualifications and in their mind they will put forward the CCNP candidate over the CCNA 100% of the time. That only gets you an interview however and that's fine by me. I prefer technical interviews.
  • RouteMyPacketRouteMyPacket Member Posts: 1,104
    xnx wrote: »
    Gotta agree here, saying it how it is.

    Obviously 'RouteMyPacket' seems to be in a managerial position and maybe more than well versed in networking, but to me he seems quite rude even by standards.

    I've been in one before for sure and 90% of today's "IT Pros" would have a bad day after I got through with them in a technical interview. "Well, it says here you have a CCNA R/S, Voice, Security, DC...ok, so let's start with R/S" and I would go down the line and quickly learn the truth. Anyway, i'm jaded and to each his/her own. I do wish you the best of luck OP, stick to what you are good at and supplement it with high level certification.
    Modularity and Design Simplicity:

    Think of the 2:00 a.m. test—if you were awakened in the
    middle of the night because of a network problem and had to figure out the
    traffic flows in your network while you were half asleep, could you do it?
  • MrBrianMrBrian Member Posts: 520
    Do what you do and study for the CCNP. If you already have 6 years experience in some capacity that's a huge plus. I've only been working a year and a half and have already risen to a mid/top level noc engineer. For 2 years I studied networking and went through the CCNP while getting my AA, full time and not working..

    I owe my quick ascension all to my studies.. as having the fundamentals made it easier to pick up real world scenarios/issues. The real world experience is the real value, but you can shorten the process immensely by studying/labbing for certs. Just like you go to college to learn a job/degree, it won't guarantee you'll be good at the profession, but if you can study and learn it, it sure can help you succeed over someone simply picking things up over time working a job..
    Currently reading: Internet Routing Architectures by Halabi
  • IristheangelIristheangel CCIEx2 (Sec + DC), CCNP RS, CCNA V/S/R/DC, CISSP, CEH, MCSE 2003, A+/L+/N+/S+, and a lot more from m Pasadena, CAMod Posts: 4,133 Mod
    xnx wrote: »
    Gotta agree here, saying it how it is.

    Obviously 'RouteMyPacket' seems to be in a managerial position and maybe more than well versed in networking, but to me he seems quite rude even by standards.

    I see his point and don't find him rude. I've been in the situation of vetting job candidates and wasting hours of my time with people who had XYZ certs. I think his advice is relatively fair: Focus on finding a job first and work on the certs second In reality, it's going to take months and months to study your way to a CCNP. If you don't have a lab to work in, you're WAY worse off. Working on getting your foot in the door for a networking position that would give him the opportunity to work on the technologies and maybe even a lab would probably make it a LOT easier to get that CCNP. It wouldn't take much to refresh his knowledge to a point where he could pass a technical interview if he has 6 years of experience - his time might be better spent on that. Then after achieving the job, go for the CCNP.

    My 2 cents
    BS, MS, and CCIE #50931
    Blog: www.network-node.com
  • xnxxnx Do they matter? UKMember Posts: 464 ■■■□□□□□□□
    I see his point and don't find him rude. I've been in the situation of vetting job candidates and wasting hours of my time with people who had XYZ certs. I think his advice is relatively fair: Focus on finding a job first and work on the certs second In reality, it's going to take months and months to study your way to a CCNP. If you don't have a lab to work in, you're WAY worse off. Working on getting your foot in the door for a networking position that would give him the opportunity to work on the technologies and maybe even a lab would probably make it a LOT easier to get that CCNP. It wouldn't take much to refresh his knowledge to a point where he could pass a technical interview if he has 6 years of experience - his time might be better spent on that. Then after achieving the job, go for the CCNP.

    My 2 cents
    Yeah, I completely I understand, certifications have allowed for scenarios where people who have only used a computer for web browsing before to get their CV onto the desk of a hiring manager in some cases, obviously this is a waste of time really for both people involved.
    Getting There ...

    Lab Equipment: Using Cisco CSRs and 4 Switches currently
  • ande0255ande0255 Banned Posts: 1,178
    I'd go Voice if your familiar and really work at landing a VoIP role, as learning at a professional level without the experience is really difficult, at least in my opinion. I'd also consider security, as being able to work with companies edge devices or at least understanding how they work is pretty vital for troubleshooting.
  • neal32neal32 Member Posts: 11 ■□□□□□□□□□
    Sat my SWITCH exam today and.....failed. I failed. 748/1000, 790 to pass. Never thought I would fail a Cisco exam as I always study until I know the concepts inside and out.

    Overall my prep was good and I felt confident going in, more confident than ROUTE for sure. That said I was a lot more nervous just from all the 1st time failures I had read about.

    The exam was overall very unfair I thought. Some questions were ambiguous, some were model specific, some didn't even make sense. There was even an EIGRP question!

    The sims/simlets were fine and I feel I aced them. The traditionally easy drag and drops I feel I didn't do very well at all. So damn ambiguous, I would love to explain but NDA and all that.

    I wrote down what I didn't think I got right and for several things I couldn't find references to it in the OCG or some of my other material. Stuff that will take scouring through the Cisco online docs to find out.

    The Spanning tree stuff required you to really know the nuts and bolts of it, that was fine and fair, just more difficult then I thought, but definitely fair. Also the HSRP stuff was pretty in-depth.

    Now............I guess I just try again in a couple of weeks, I don't feel my knowledge is overly lacking, or any more labbing will improve it. It's all pretty depressing atm. I never had a strong desire to study for CCIE, but now, no chance.

    The breakdown of my score is all over the place and doesn't really help pinpoint a weakness bar Prepare Infrastructure to support advanced services where I got a big fat 0% (It's only 5% of the exam)

    I really doubt most of those who pass first go with 900+ do it legitimately.

    Next post will hopefully be a more positive one, the sooner this turd of an exam is in the rearview mirror, the better.
  • RouteMyPacketRouteMyPacket Member Posts: 1,104
    neal32 wrote: »
    Sat my SWITCH exam today and.....failed. I failed. 748/1000, 790 to pass. Never thought I would fail a Cisco exam as I always study until I know the concepts inside and out.

    Overall my prep was good and I felt confident going in, more confident than ROUTE for sure. That said I was a lot more nervous just from all the 1st time failures I had read about.

    The exam was overall very unfair I thought. Some questions were ambiguous, some were model specific, some didn't even make sense. There was even an EIGRP question!

    The sims/simlets were fine and I feel I aced them. The traditionally easy drag and drops I feel I didn't do very well at all. So damn ambiguous, I would love to explain but NDA and all that.

    I wrote down what I didn't think I got right and for several things I couldn't find references to it in the OCG or some of my other material. Stuff that will take scouring through the Cisco online docs to find out.

    The Spanning tree stuff required you to really know the nuts and bolts of it, that was fine and fair, just more difficult then I thought, but definitely fair. Also the HSRP stuff was pretty in-depth.

    Now............I guess I just try again in a couple of weeks, I don't feel my knowledge is overly lacking, or any more labbing will improve it. It's all pretty depressing atm. I never had a strong desire to study for CCIE, but now, no chance.

    The breakdown of my score is all over the place and doesn't really help pinpoint a weakness bar Prepare Infrastructure to support advanced services where I got a big fat 0% (It's only 5% of the exam)

    I really doubt most of those who pass first go with 900+ do it legitimately.

    Next post will hopefully be a more positive one, the sooner this turd of an exam is in the rearview mirror, the better.

    I hate to hear you didn't make it the first time out. It's a fair exam though so what did you do to prepare for it? If I hadn't had years of switching under my belt I would not have made it through this exam. HSRP for one is where my real world experience carried me through and it wasn't hard at all, just somewhat involved.

    EIGRP? Sure, since we use that on MLS's then for sure it's no shock to see it brought up on a switch exam.

    IMO, the focus for SWITCH should be STP, HSRP, Etherchannel (L2 mostly), and VTP. Another thing that i'm not sure how you study for is the basic business minded scenarios. You need to know what to ask when deploying a new L2/L3 solution and I am guessing that is where you drew a blank? It's not technical but business focused on those.

    Chin up, it's not an "easy" exam after all.
    Modularity and Design Simplicity:

    Think of the 2:00 a.m. test—if you were awakened in the
    middle of the night because of a network problem and had to figure out the
    traffic flows in your network while you were half asleep, could you do it?
  • fredrikjjfredrikjj Member Posts: 879
    I agree that the switch exam is kind of dumb in how they've "artificially" increased the difficulty by making some of the questions quite vague. I lost the same amount of points on both route and switch, but on the switch exam it wasn't due to being unprepared - I just couldn't figure out what the right answer was. I don't think any additional studying would have helped me score anywhere close to 1000. In contrast, on route I felt like I lost points because I wasn't good enough and hadn't studied certain things.
    Some questions were ambiguous, some were model specific, some didn't even make sense.

    Yes, I'm fairly certain that I got one question that had an error in the diagram that made none of the answers corect. That could be me just not being prepared for that scenario, but I knew the feature in question very well. It's strange that there would be that kind of error after 4 years though.
  • creamy_stewcreamy_stew Member Posts: 406 ■■■□□□□□□□
    It seems the SWITCH exam is still as crappy as when I took it a couple of years ago. By far the most frustrating exam I've ever taken. So many badly written questions. I was about to walk out when encountered the second spelling error. It was fairly new when I sat for it, so I figured that was why it so bad, but apparently it still sucks.

    I would have been totally unprepared for the detail required for the HSRP questions had it not been for Boson.
    Itchy... Tasty!
    [X] DCICN
    [X] IINS

    [ ] CCDA
    [ ] DCICT
  • neal32neal32 Member Posts: 11 ■□□□□□□□□□
    Resat the SWITCH today and.................passed with a 879.

    There were lots of questions from my first test, which really wasn't that much of an advantage as I still had to work through them. All the labs were pretty much the same, same simlet as well. (If they were the same sims, I think I may have overlooked one bit of one, that could've been the difference between passing first time and not.) I think if I had this exam the first time I would've passed with the sam-ish score, I don't feel 100 odd points better than my last exam.

    Anyways here are my takeaway points from the exam and exam tips I would've given to my past self.

    The exam requires an extremely detailed knowledge of all the topics on the syllabus, the first time, I thought if I knew it conceptually I would be fine. With that said, rote learn things that you don't think are important, cause for whatever reason, Cisco does. Don't assume VRRP is pretty much the same as HSRP, know the differences, all of them, not just the obvious differences. Know the Cisco way of planning. Lab as much as you can and as many different scenarios as you can, make them up, see what different things do to your lab. The knowledge you gain there will be invaluable.

    As for general exam tips. I sat both exams in Guayaquil, Ecuador. The temperature is around 30 degrees celcius at 100% humidity. So the first time I went into the exam I was dressed for the beach. They had aircon and I was literally shaking with cold for about 80% of the first exam. This time I brought a jumper (different test centre, same city) and I was glad I did because they had the aircon cranked upto 11 as well. Know where the test centre is, ideally it would be good if you have been before. Today the taxi took 30 mins to find it and communicating in Spanish really sucked when all I was prepping for in my head was Networking. I didn't need that stress!

    Also the exam was $250 instead of $200 the first time! Thanks Cisco.

    Now, I will review the ROUTE material, LAB the topology until I know it inside and out then sit the TSHOOT exam in about a month. I'm in no rush. After that I think I will knock over the JNCIA exam. I've never worked/studied on anything other than Cisco and there seems to be demand out there for it. After that, CCNA Voice, then hopefully be somewhere through the CCVP track come Feb next year.
  • neal32neal32 Member Posts: 11 ■□□□□□□□□□
    Oh, and set your study inline with Cisco's weighting. In hindsight there was no real point learning the Voice, Qos and Wireless stuff as well as STP and VLAN's. At least from an exam perspective.
  • tomtom1tomtom1 Member Posts: 375
    neal32 wrote: »
    Oh, and set your study inline with Cisco's weighting. In hindsight there was no real point learning the Voice, Qos and Wireless stuff as well as STP and VLAN's. At least from an exam perspective.

    Thanks for sharing. Did you also get some planning stuff? How did you prepare for those questions (if any)?
  • neal32neal32 Member Posts: 11 ■□□□□□□□□□
    tomtom1 wrote: »
    Thanks for sharing. Did you also get some planning stuff? How did you prepare for those questions (if any)?

    Yeah, there were definitely planning questions and also indirect planning questions. I just tried to learn the Cisco way from the study material I had. There is a good summary guide/.pdf that someone has posted on the Cisco Learning Network that has a chapter on it.
  • tomtom1tomtom1 Member Posts: 375
    neal32 wrote: »
    Yeah, there were definitely planning questions and also indirect planning questions. I just tried to learn the Cisco way from the study material I had. There is a good summary guide/.pdf that someone has posted on the Cisco Learning Network that has a chapter on it.

    Which PDF would that be? Would you mind seeing if you can dig it up?
  • neal32neal32 Member Posts: 11 ■□□□□□□□□□
    https://learningnetwork.cisco.com/thread/61025

    All the best. I'm glad I cleared the exam, I'm reviewing the ROUTE stuff before I sit TSHOOT and it's much more......fun?
  • lrblrb Member Posts: 526
    Congrats on the pass! The TSHOOT is honestly the easiest exam I have ever taken so you'll be fine. If you studied hard for SWITCH and ROUTE then I would just take the exam the next day.

    On the earlier discussion about whether to go for certs or find a job etc, I would like to weigh in and say that you can absolutely do both at the same time right? I completely agree with fredrikjj here and say that if you can study for certs than at least you are showing employees that you care about learning the technologies. Sure if you pass the exams and can't remember anything after you walk out of the testing centre but that is different using your free time to research new topics and if you can get a cert out of it too then all the better to you.

    I've been on heaps of panels and I never turned anyone away from getting an interview because they were "overqualified - e.g. a candidate with a CCNP applying for a CCNA level job.

    And plus, what's he going to do? Apply for jobs between the time he wakes up and goes to sleep? If people actually do this then I suggest they look at speaking to a recruiter who will do all the ground work for them.
  • varunwilsonvarunwilson Registered Users Posts: 1 ■□□□□□□□□□
    Hello guys, I just started in CCNP, Is thisnetworking Field have scope,.??
  • neal32neal32 Member Posts: 11 ■□□□□□□□□□
    lrb wrote: »
    Congrats on the pass! The TSHOOT is honestly the easiest exam I have ever taken so you'll be fine. If you studied hard for SWITCH and ROUTE then I would just take the exam the next day.

    On the earlier discussion about whether to go for certs or find a job etc, I would like to weigh in and say that you can absolutely do both at the same time right? I completely agree with fredrikjj here and say that if you can study for certs than at least you are showing employees that you care about learning the technologies. Sure if you pass the exams and can't remember anything after you walk out of the testing centre but that is different using your free time to research new topics and if you can get a cert out of it too then all the better to you.

    I've been on heaps of panels and I never turned anyone away from getting an interview because they were "overqualified - e.g. a candidate with a CCNP applying for a CCNA level job.

    And plus, what's he going to do? Apply for jobs between the time he wakes up and goes to sleep? If people actually do this then I suggest they look at speaking to a recruiter who will do all the ground work for them.

    I could do both, which is the situation I will be in in Feb '15. I'm travelling South America until then and have no plans to go home early to look for a job ;) . I plan to study all the way up to that date so I will have a few more certs (At this stage I hope to have CCNP, CCNA : Voice and JCNIA. Also because I will be studying the whole way up to that date, the information will be very fresh and technical interviews have never really been a problem, but should be even less of a problem. The only negative is that I would have been 2 years out of a job (Travelling the whole time), which shouldn't be an issue as I will tell the interviewer/recruiter I used that down time for professional development.

    As for TSHOOT, it looks pretty simple. Been playing around with the topology in GNS3. I read through the entire OCG book in 3 hours yesterday! Now, I'm just reviewing ROUTE (Passed the exam in Oct '12). No rush to sit it. I'm thinking the TSHOOT exam is a waste of time, if you work/have worked in an ITIL or similar environment. But it's a good opportunity to tie the routing and switching together and in my case, a good excuse to refresh all the ROUTE material.
  • TBickleTBickle Member Posts: 110
    Study for your certifications so you can have the knowledge when the right opportunity presents itself and don't listen to some of the other horrible advice here. People love to tell other people to wait before studying for other certifications, yet they chase certification after certification just like everyone else does. It's very hypocritical and extremely hipster to say nowadays.

    Once again, study, move forward and expand on your knowledge and don't listen to anyone.

    Good luck!
  • ghonayghonay Registered Users Posts: 4 ■□□□□□□□□□
    I agree with you. I think that if somebody comes in with certifications they can't back up with experience, that demonstrates to me a drive to learn and improve, and that alone can be a plus. While it may not qualify them for a network job straight out, it can help you out in other areas. I know a lot of support techs that rose through the ranks because they had a functioning knowledge of R/S, voice, wireless, etc through their certification studies, and that made them better able to coordinate with IT staff in other groups instead of just sitting there and being sent line by line instructions to follow like the other techs. It's definitely a plus and something that can help you advance your career, even if it doesn't lead you into a full blown network job.

    Gregory
  • HeeroHeero Member Posts: 486
    I think the important point is that experience is much more valuable than certs. If you are unemployed and have a CCNA, you should be looking for a job in the network field first, and studying for more certs second. Sometimes real-life stuff can put you in a situation where you can't get a job at the moment, but you can study for more certs. In that case it is a good choice to learn more. It is never going to hurt you to learn more about networking. I got both my CCNA and my CCNP while going to my college. I had a couple people tell me that the CCNP was a waste because I don't have experience, but what the hell? Am I supposed to drop out of college and get a job before I study for the CCNP? In the end, the CCNP helped me stand apart from other students and I was able to land a great internship and I have had no problems finding network engineer jobs since then.
  • neal32neal32 Member Posts: 11 ■□□□□□□□□□
    Passed TSHOOT today with 958.

    I did the exam in Guayaquil again today. Last time I sat the SWITCH exam there the guy said the '?' was disabled (didn't really matter as I passed), which I could've sworn I used the first time I attempted the exam, so today I made sure to get the keyboard in English.

    So, the first time the exam crashed and the keyboard stopped working, 2nd time, same thing. After they were on the phone to PearsonVue, all was resolved for the 3rd time. Things to note were that I had 3 sets of different Multi-choice questions at the start. Anyways the multiple choice questions caught me totally off guard as I only practiced the topology! Also the guys were standing behind me and I felt pressured to rush through the multiple choice to get to the sims to test the keyboard. In the end my score was 100% for the tickets, 0% for the multiple choice! Not important I guess as it's exactly 42 points worth but still, if the exam worked first time I would've got some questions right.

    The exam is super easy as a quick google search will tell you and I finished the exam with 1 hour and 25 minutes left. I didn't rush through the exam per se but I thought there might be more questions after the tickets because at the start it said the exam consists of 40 odd questions. I didn't realize that each ticket = 3 questions.

    If you have good knowledge of SWITCH and ROUTE you can prep for this exam EASILY in 1 day by watching the Kevin Wallace youtube videos (the abort 'strategy' helps so much it's almost impossible to fail if you use it. Unless you have less of an idea then a CCNA.) and do all the labs that you can get your hands on. Once through is enough.

    I have been chasing the feeling that I got after I passed ICND1 ever since, the feeling of studying something relatively difficult, learning it, then walking in and kicking the exams arse. Slowly the joy that I get from passing an exam is slowly waning. In a strange way the more Cisco exams I do, the less I want to do because I don't like how the exams are worded and I feel in some ways the exam difficulty is artificially inflated (Looking at you SWITCH).

    But yes, I am now CCNP certified, which is certainly not the worst! Now.........I was going to knock over JCNIA next, but reading INE CCIE in a year or whatever, they give 2 weeks for CCNA voice. In 2-3 weeks I may be around a test centre again and it seems like a good challenge. But if I'm not ready, I'm certainly in no rush.
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