Most common commercial tools for Network-centric jobs?

That Random GuyThat Random Guy Member Posts: 64 ■■■□□□□□□□
I'm trying to get a better feeler for what most or at least what may be considered the most common set of enterprise commercial tools utilized by organizations when considering network/NOC type roles?

I know that's not a simple questions and perhaps it's not the right one either, but I've been very centered on the knowledge I gained from CCNA and felt it was appropriate to then also start playing around with Juniper stuff. It dawned on me that I don't actually know what's being used in the industry when it comes to the field.

The CCNA has always given me the impression that everything is CLI-based but looking over some things on Cisco's site has given me a different impression.

I am aiming to step up onto an entry position under networking and I feel like it'd be better to have at least have some minor familiarity with what's being used in the industry.

Again, I know this is not an easy thing to answer and this question can likely be answered in many different ways depending on a lot of factors (e.g. type of business). However, humor me and at least let me know what you as a professional in the field have encountered and have seen heavily used? Is it always Cisco? Do you always use IOS? Is it sometimes Juniper? Is it a mix of many other brands?


  • Infosec_SamInfosec_Sam Security+, CCENT, ITIL Foundation, A+ Madison, WIAdmin Posts: 527 Admin
    My last job was very network-adjacent, so I spent a lot of time with our infrastructure manager. We were an internal IT department for an organization of 250 across 4 locations. Most of that job was CLI-focused, and we were a Cisco shop, so a lot of what was on the CCNA/CCNP was super relevant there. Once you start working with firewalls and other network tools, you'll start to see a lot more GUIs than just with routers/switches. 

    For an entry-level networking position, the CCNA should serve you well. Even if you don't work with Cisco gear, the important part is that you know the concepts of routing and switching. Branching out to HP/Juniper/etc. really is all the same concepts, just with a difference in syntax. 

    If you'd rather get some more practice in, there's a lot of older enterprise networking gear for sale for cheap, or free. Home labs look good on resumes!
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  • JDMurrayJDMurray MSIT InfoSec CISSP SSCP GSEC EnCE C|EH Cloud+ CySA+ CASP+ PenTest+ Security+ Surf City, USAAdmin Posts: 12,544 Admin
    edited May 2020
    Very large corporations will have a lot of mixed-vendor equipment, including Check Point, Juniper, Huawei, and Cisco. You'll drive yourself crazy trying to learn all those products ahead of time to second-guess what your next employer might use, so stay with Cisco, Microsoft, and AWS as the most likely vendors to be in any corporate network.
  • Fulcrum45Fulcrum45 Member Posts: 620 ■■■■■□□□□□
    JD and Sam are right. Core concepts and the focus on a few ubiquitous vendors would be the best approach. In my experience, if it isn't a Cisco device it is still very "Cisco like" in it's approach to the CLI structure- aside from VLAN tagging anyway. When it came to firewalls I learned heavily on Fortigates and their GUI. This helped a lot in making other vendor GUIs feel less alien.    
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