640-863 - Cisco Press Book(s)

pitviperpitviper Member Posts: 1,376 ■■■■■■■□□□
What’s the difference between the Cisco Press 640-863 Self-Study and the Official Exam Cert Guide? Is one preferred over the other? I’m just looking for supplemental reading at this point with the exam being a possibility down the road. Thanks!


  • wireratwirerat Senior Member Member Posts: 251
    From Cisco Press website:
    Which book is right for me?
    Self-Study Guides and Exam Certification Guides are intended to complement one another. Though they will cover similar content, they do so in a very different manner. Choosing one book over another depends where you are in the study cycle. If you are familiar with the base concepts, but need to assess your knowledge and review/practice for the exam, we recommend the Exam Certification Guides. If you are new to a topic area and need more detailed discussions of the foundation concepts, we recommend you start with the Self-Study Guides.
    I usually go with the self-study guide unless it has a lot of bad reviews on Amazon.
  • pitviperpitviper Member Posts: 1,376 ■■■■■■■□□□
    I'll check out the Self Study guide - I'm used to the CCVP path where there is an option of 1 (and ONLY 1!) book per test :)

    CCNP:Collaboration, CCNP:R&S, CCNA:S, CCNA:V, CCNA, CCENT
  • dynamikdynamik Senior Member Banned Posts: 12,312 ■■■■■■■■■□
    I haven't read it myself yet, but I've heard good things about the Diane Teare book.
  • pitviperpitviper Member Posts: 1,376 ■■■■■■■□□□
    Hmmm, I’m going to check out the Study Guide first (less pages :) ). Anyone use the CBT Nuggets for this as well? I checked out the sample vid, and I’m not familiar with the trainer.
    CCNP:Collaboration, CCNP:R&S, CCNA:S, CCNA:V, CCNA, CCENT
  • darkerosxxdarkerosxx Senior Member Banned Posts: 1,343
    I used the Diane Teare book as well as the quick reference sheets and passed:


    The CBT Nuggets for CCDA now includes the old videos, plus new ones for updates. I haven't watched any of them, but keep that in mind as you watch the first 3/4 of the videos, if you get it.

    Good luck! :)
  • pitviperpitviper Member Posts: 1,376 ■■■■■■■□□□
    Thanks for the link / feedback!

    I went through the voice and security chapters (since they are fresh on my mind!) – Nothing really new there. I’m going to give it a solid month, and then possibly sit the test.
    CCNP:Collaboration, CCNP:R&S, CCNA:S, CCNA:V, CCNA, CCENT
  • hypnotoadhypnotoad Senior Member Banned Posts: 915
    CCDA Resources in order of depth:
    1. CBT Nuggets 861 (the 863 updates - 3 hours - are where the good stuff is).
    2. CCDA Quick Ref Guide
    3. Bruno/Jordan Book
    4. Teare Book.

    Readability and entertainment seems to be inversely proportional to how indepth the material is. At 922 pages, the Teare book has put me to sleep more than once. There are really no CCDA labs, but I guess you could do the exercises in the Teare book for practice. There is a case study at the end of the Bruno/Jordan book. Both books come with practice exams, which should be thoroughly used, since the CCDA is mostly theory. This will help you remember all the details of the technologies and methods.

    I suppose if you were feeling ambitious for some hands-on, you could set up NetFlow, SNMPv3, or write up a Design Document using the PPDIOO methods.

    Keep in mind the CBTN 861 video has some AVVID and ISDN parts. The 863 updates wont help you calculate bandwidth or tell you to where to use an ASA or IPS...it simply doesnt go that in-depth. I thought the most thorough video was the one on WLANs.

    All 4 materials have a nice review chapter of TCP/IP and the OSI reference model.
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