well-rounded network engineer

monorionmonorion Member Posts: 90 ■■■□□□□□□□
Hello All,

I Definitely want to go down the network engineer path and was wondering if my best bet is to just stick with Cisco certs (CCNP and beyond hopefully). I currently have CCENT and planing on taking part 2 early June, is it best just to take cisco to the max or is it a good idea to check out other vendor certs pertaining to the networking world?

Thanks all!

Comments

  • FadakartelFadakartel Member Posts: 144
    Do other certs like security, voice, ccda etc from Cisco first then decide where you want to go. Juniper is also good especially if you want to work in a service provider environment.
  • devils_haircutdevils_haircut Member Posts: 284 ■■■□□□□□□□
    Definitely second picking up certs in other tracks like voice, wireless, etc. I personally don't think very highly of the CCNA: Security certification...I mean, I have it, but I didn't learn much from it, and it touches very, very briefly on ASDM and actually configuring an ASA.

    Maybe I'm biased because I work for K-12 schools, but wireless seems to be a huge one these days. Something like the CWNA or CCNA: Wireless might be good options, if you're interested in it. I'd say if you have limited experience in networking in general, don't bother learning a bunch of different vendors...you're better off learning one vendor in-depth, because as long as you know the standards and protocols, that knowledge will transfer easily.

    I learned on Cisco, but now I primarily work with HP switching. I also touch Cisco and Dell, and they're roughly the same concepts, just slightly different commands, but they all support the ? and TAB commands, so it's easy to figure it out once you know the terminology and concepts. Same with firewalls, wireless controllers, etc.

  • --chris----chris-- Member Posts: 1,516 ■■■■■□□□□□
    Definitely second picking up certs in other tracks like voice, wireless, etc. I personally don't think very highly of the CCNA: Security certification...I mean, I have it, but I didn't learn much from it, and it touches very, very briefly on ASDM and actually configuring an ASA.

    Maybe I'm biased because I work for K-12 schools, but wireless seems to be a huge one these days. Something like the CWNA or CCNA: Wireless might be good options, if you're interested in it. I'd say if you have limited experience in networking in general, don't bother learning a bunch of different vendors...you're better off learning one vendor in-depth, because as long as you know the standards and protocols, that knowledge will transfer easily.

    I learned on Cisco, but now I primarily work with HP switching. I also touch Cisco and Dell, and they're roughly the same concepts, just slightly different commands, but they all support the ? and TAB commands, so it's easy to figure it out once you know the terminology and concepts. Same with firewalls, wireless controllers, etc.

    +1 to this. Learn the protocols and standards. Learn a vendor real well so you have a go-to skill set, but once that is done its just a matter of looking up commands and tabbing through unfamiliar CLI's to get the configuration you want.

    Dell, Adtran and Cisco are similar in the CLI.


  • networker050184networker050184 Mod Posts: 11,962 Mod
    I'd certainly be learning all you can, but as far as networking certifications stick to Cisco unless you have a reason not to. They are still the top dog in the networking cert world. Juniper certainly isn't bad to have either as others have stated.
    An expert is a man who has made all the mistakes which can be made.
  • docricedocrice Member Posts: 1,706 ■■■■■■■■■■
    I wasn't exactly impressed with the CCNA Security either. I especially was not impressed with the CCNA Wireless. I let both of these certs expire. The CCNP levels likely are better.

    That said, if you want to be well-rounded and effective, learn to read packets by capturing traffic. I find it frustrating when I work with network engineers who can't parse through PCAPs.
    Hopefully-useful stuff I've written: http://kimiushida.com/bitsandpieces/articles/
  • xengorethxengoreth Member Posts: 117 ■■■□□□□□□□
    I'm working on the CCNA Security, myself, but I will throw my two cents in here. The latest update for the CCNA Security was extensive and the new test is quite punishing. I'll have to circle back around when all is said and done to see if I concur on with the general opinion in this thread that the CCNA Security isn't worth the time. That will still be a probably unless you need it to sit for the CCNP Security tests or for WGU.

    I do, however, agree 100% with docrice on the NP level material (but especially Wireshark/tcpdump). I'm simultaneously working through some of the R/S material, which has been fantastic.

    In addition, understanding virtualization/cloud technologies and especially the underlying networking is a great way to branch out. The same could be said about storage, OS administration, applications, or any other IT specialization. Finally, scripting/programming languages are becoming especially useful/important in networking and all IT disciplines.
    2018 Goals: CCNP R/S, VCP6-NV
  • inscom.brigadeinscom.brigade Member Posts: 400 ■■■□□□□□□□
    I have to do an ACMA for work, it is aruba wireless. The aruba community is very small. The only thing I can find to study with is cbt nuggets wireless.

    my current job at the us army is not making me do another security +, they are excepting my ccna security.


    I think cisco VOIP is a good direction; they may call it collaborative now.
  • Codeman6669Codeman6669 Member Posts: 227
    If you have no network experience, i wouldnt worry about the "specialized" certs. (Ie: ccna wireless, ccna security etc)
    Work experience goes further then certifications in this field. Have experieince and certs your gold. Have experieince certs, a degreee your kicking ass.

    But nobody just gets a wireless network engineer because they have a ccna wireless. Get the ccna, and while studying, and after getting the ccna, look for network jobs. Get in however you can, and learn as much as you can as quickly as you can. If any projects come to you, accept them and learn as you go. Thats where the ccna knowledge will help you put the pieces together and figure out things on your own, or with some help from others. You get 2 years experience doing network related work with a CCNA, and your now an asset. Then you figure out where you want to go. But you need to build your personal foundation. and the foundation of all networks is Routers and Switches. ie: CCNA Routing and Switching :) Best of luck! Be ambitious!
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