Need programming for network career?

onemindonemind Member Posts: 12 ■□□□□□□□□□

I am in the process of choosing units for my networking degree and was wondering what would be the most useful for a career in the network industry. There are lots of programming units with a focus on networking like java, php and other languages used for networking apps. Just wondering if real world network engineers and administrators have much need for programming and should i take some more programming units or focus more on the hardware side of things?

Any info would be greatly appreciated



  • fonduefondue Member Posts: 104
    Programming helps, even if it's just a scripting class. I run scripts to automate as much as possible.
  • onemindonemind Member Posts: 12 ■□□□□□□□□□
    Thanks Fondue,

    The thing is, i am already a reasonably competent programmer so taking a scripting class would probably be a waste of time as its pretty easy to teach yourself this kind of thing.

    What i want to know is, would it be worth taking some upper level programming classes like oop, data structures and algorithms as they pertain to networking and other comp sci type classes or would being able to build an enterprise app or e-commerce website be overkill for a network engineer if all he need is a few scripts to automate whatever he needs to automate?

    For example, would knowing the ins and outs of mysql, php, xml and java be of much use in becomming a CCIE or would this type of knowledge just be the wrong field altogether?

    Thanks again
  • JDMurrayJDMurray MSIT InfoSec, CISSP, SSCP, GSEC, EnCE, C|EH, CySA+, PenTest+, CASP+, Security+ Surf City, USAAdmin Posts: 12,158 Admin
    What you are talking about is moving from beyond simple application programming and into learning the field of software engineering. Most network IT/IS people that I know benefit greatly from knowing server-side programming (e.g., Perl, PHP, HTML, shell scripting, etc.), but I can't say that they are involved on any projects where they need to be genuine software engineers using C/C++, C#, VB, Java, etc. They usually work on small programs and leave the "real" software projects to the engineers. IT guys are more concerned with learning the administration of Database systems, Content Management Systems (CMS), source code control systems, confguring routers and firewalls, etc.
  • WebmasterWebmaster Admin Posts: 10,292 Admin
    For example, would knowing the ins and outs of mysql, php, xml and java be of much use in becomming a CCIE or would this type of knowledge just be the wrong field altogether?
    I agree that any type of programming, especially a good basic foundation, is helpful in pretty much any IT job. Even if it was just for automating/scripting simple tasks or understanding the software running on devices. But like JD said, you don't need to be a software engineer to do that. Mysql, php, xml, and java, are not particularly useful for a CCIE. The latter is mainly concerned with the underlying network infrastructure.
  • onemindonemind Member Posts: 12 ■□□□□□□□□□
    Cool, thanks guys.

    I think i might just continue programming in my own time and leave my uni stuff to the networking side. The network degree does have 2 small programming units (into to comp sci, and internet programming) that are compulsory so i guess they will be more than enough.

  • EshwarBaulEshwarBaul Users Awaiting Email Confirmation Posts: 4 ■□□□□□□□□□
    i think in the computer industry it is safe to have ideas in all the fields
  • mobri09mobri09 Users Awaiting Email Confirmation Posts: 723
    Jdmurray well said - not that i know...but what my people tell me. A professor at my college just went over an entire lecture based upon this discussion.
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