Labbing resources for CCNP DC

brobertsbroberts Posts: 23Member ■□□□□□□□□□
Hey everyone, I'm wrapping up my CCNP R&S next week and looking to jump right into CCNP DC.

As far as labbing, my work has a 5k in our lab that I can use. I also have access to VIRL and of course the UCS emulator. I have some lab rentals for INE and IPExpert, but I'd like to stockpile them a bit for the CCIE DC, whenever I get to that point.

With all that being said, would I be able to use the resources I have without having to rent rack time? And does anyone have any recent experiences with VIRL for labbing CCNP DC? I'm curious to know how far along they've came.

Comments

  • ninjaturtleninjaturtle Posts: 245Member
    One N5K at work won't help you much. With VIRL you can run OTV and Fabricpath, other features like vPC aren't supported. The UCS emulator has you pretty covered from what I've heard. I haven't touched the UCS portion yet, been in the Nexus world studying.

    Unfortunately, no matter how you spin it you won't be able to avoid rack rentals for the DC discipline. Short of you creating your own rack at work for your "testing" platform, you will need to cough up the tokens mate.
    Current Study Discipline: CCIE Data Center
    Cisco SEAL, Cisco SWAT, Cisco DeltaForce, Cisco FBI, Cisco DoD, Cisco Army Rangers, Cisco SOCOM .ιlι..ιlι.
  • brobertsbroberts Posts: 23Member ■□□□□□□□□□
    I figured that was the case! I've heard good things about the UCS emulator, but wasn't sure how much could be done with the 5k and VIRL alone. Now I just have to see if work will come off any cash for more lab time. :p

    Thanks for the response, ninja!
  • d4nz1gd4nz1g Posts: 464Member
    You definetely need 7k and MDS exposure. They are similar platforms, but kinda different on the operations standpoint.

    Do you work for a partner? If so, you could use PEC labs.
  • ninjaturtleninjaturtle Posts: 245Member
    broberts wrote: »
    I figured that was the case! I've heard good things about the UCS emulator, but wasn't sure how much could be done with the 5k and VIRL alone. Now I just have to see if work will come off any cash for more lab time. :p

    Thanks for the response, ninja!

    No worries mate! I'm in the same boat as you. When I ask work for education funds, I get the glazed eye look from upper management.
    Current Study Discipline: CCIE Data Center
    Cisco SEAL, Cisco SWAT, Cisco DeltaForce, Cisco FBI, Cisco DoD, Cisco Army Rangers, Cisco SOCOM .ιlι..ιlι.
  • brobertsbroberts Posts: 23Member ■□□□□□□□□□
    d4nz1g - Sadly, I don't! I've seen that mentioned in a lot of the CCNP/CCIE DC threads around here, seems like having that option available to you helps a lot.
  • d4nz1gd4nz1g Posts: 464Member
    It helps a lot! Since you don't have them, try to get things planned, and try to show to your manager how would this certification help in improving your performance at work. Tell them that you need access to an isolated and controlled environment (labs) to try and break stuff so you can dominate the platforms (not only nexus,. btw),. They might see it as an investment. Also, lab slots are not that expensive if you negotiate with IPexpert or INE.

    Everything else you need you can find on the books (DC virtualization fundamentals & NX OS switching) and at cisco documentation.
  • brobertsbroberts Posts: 23Member ■□□□□□□□□□
    Thanks a lot for all the useful info! Work just purchased me the IPExpert 2-year subscription based off of the opinions of what everyone had to say about their CCNP/IE DC material, and I've got all of the CCIE DC reading list in my Safari books.

    Really excited to get started - I find myself spending all my downtime looking up DC info, instead of focusing on wrapping up my CCNP RS icon_silent.gif

    It looks like everyone recommends starting off with the DC Virtualization Fundamentals, even as a complete DC newbie. I'm guessing you agree with that since you recommended it yourself?
  • d4nz1gd4nz1g Posts: 464Member
    For sure! It covers even the most complex technologies on DC track (like vm fex) on a simple way. Lots of drawings and explanations that makes everything really easy to abstract and understand. 10/10 on this one.

    NX OS is a bit harder to digest. I am reading it for the third time I guess, and mixing it with reading Cisco docs and watching CCIE DC videos. Do that yourself, try to mix the videos with reading and don't forget to take notes. It really helps.
  • brobertsbroberts Posts: 23Member ■□□□□□□□□□
    It will definitely be the first book I start reading (hopefully next week!).

    Looking forward to seeing your updates about your progress and wish you luck! Knock it out, man!
  • d4nz1gd4nz1g Posts: 464Member
    I am not updating there haha, kinda busy.
    Thank you for the reminder, I might take a look in there by the afternoon,.
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