Starting CCNP, which way to go ?

lordylordy Senior MemberMember Posts: 632 ■■■■□□□□□□
Dear all,

after nailing LPIC-3 (see my other thread) it is now time to focus on Cisco again.

I used to be a CCNA (expired early 2008 ) and I always wanted to take the step up
but there have been some obstacles in the way (my father died, I lost my job, etc.)

Now I'm back on track with a good job and a boss that has given me a small budget
which will pay at least 2 CCNP exams. Since Cisco is updating the CCNP by July 31st
I'm now wondering what is the best road to take. As I understand BSCI and BCMSN
will remain valid if I pass them before said date, right ? If that's the case then this
would probably be the best option since there is a lot of (mature) material on the
market for these.

On the other hand, do you think it would be possible to get both of them done in
5 months time ? I'm in the lucky situation that I have a 4-day-week so I could, more
or less, dedicate huge parts of Friday (my additional day off) to studying. From the
knowledge point I think I'm at about 80% CCNA.

I get to work with Cisco stuff on daily basis as I manage an office network and two
datacenters which hold different components from Catalyst 5000 to 7600 routers. I
also get to do interesting stuff like BGP with our different uplinks in the datacenter
so I think I have a little advantage there.

Let me know what you think icon_smile.gif

Regards,
Lordy
Working on CCNP: [X] SWITCH --- [ ] ROUTE --- [ ] TSHOOT
Goal for 2014: RHCA
Goal for 2015: CCDP

Comments

  • Bl8ckr0uterBl8ckr0uter Senior Member Inactive Imported Users Posts: 5,031 ■■■■■■■■□□
    lordy wrote: »
    Dear all,

    after nailing LPIC-3 (see my other thread) it is now time to focus on Cisco again.

    I used to be a CCNA (expired early 2008 ) and I always wanted to take the step up
    but there have been some obstacles in the way (my father died, I lost my job, etc.)

    Now I'm back on track with a good job and a boss that has given me a small budget
    which will pay at least 2 CCNP exams. Since Cisco is updating the CCNP by July 31st
    I'm now wondering what is the best road to take. As I understand BSCI and BCMSN
    will remain valid if I pass them before said date, right ? If that's the case then this
    would probably be the best option since there is a lot of (mature) material on the
    market for these.

    On the other hand, do you think it would be possible to get both of them done in
    5 months time ? I'm in the lucky situation that I have a 4-day-week so I could, more
    or less, dedicate huge parts of Friday (my additional day off) to studying. From the
    knowledge point I think I'm at about 80% CCNA.

    I get to work with Cisco stuff on daily basis as I manage an office network and two
    datacenters which hold different components from Catalyst 5000 to 7600 routers. I
    also get to do interesting stuff like BGP with our different uplinks in the datacenter
    so I think I have a little advantage there.

    Let me know what you think icon_smile.gif

    Regards,
    Lordy


    Well I guess that answers that question (from the other thread)


    You will need to pass the CCNA again since it expired. I suggest that for someone of your experience go the one exam route. I used the Todd Lammle book as well as some parts of Network Warrior. I suggest (since you seem to have access to real equipment at work) use GNS3 and a couple of 2950s/3550s for you CCNA/CCNP run. You will need a computer with decent specs to do labs but most modern pcs should do the trick.

    The route (no pun intended) I want to go for the CCNP is Route then Switch then Troubleshooting although the BSCI and BCMSM exams are still going to be available until July (and they should be "valid" for three years after you last pass date) so you could start studying for them to try to get them done by July but IMO that just seems like a lot to try to get done 3 months for 3 exams (4 exams if you do the 2 step CCNA).

    Good luck and congrats again.
  • mikej412mikej412 Cisco Moderator Member Posts: 10,086 ■■■■■■■■■■
    The Cert guides are out now, with the Self-Study books becoming available starting in March (if I remember what I saw on the Cisco Press web site).

    I think the ROUTE/SWITCH exams are available or will be available before the old BSCI/BCMSN go away. I think the TSHOOT is doing a Beta test until March sometime, so that should be available soonish.

    TSHOOT will be testing you (focused on hands on skills) on the knowledge and skills learned in ROUTE/SWITCH. But you can make up the difference in material between BSCI/ROUTE and BCMSN/SWITCH for the TSHOOT exam....

    If you haven't already bought the CCNP Certification Library or the BSCI/BCMSN Self Study books, I'd probably just start with the "new stuff."

    There is no right choice or wrong choice here -- it's just your choice. :D

    If you want to wait for more of the "new CCNP" come out, you could work on studying for the "new" 640-802 CCNA exam. No IGRP or ISDN anymore, but about 25% is different/upgraded from the "old" 640-801.
    :mike: Cisco Certifications -- Collect the Entire Set!
  • davidspirovalentinedavidspirovalentine Senior Member Member Posts: 353 ■■■■□□□□□□
    First of all, sorry to here about your dad. My prayers are with you.

    Cool Just Saw this thread (I had to search for people starting the current CCNP track so that I could be sure that I wasn't double posting).

    Get your CCNA by knocking out the one exam route, trust me. I took the two exam route and it was a total waste of time. I mean I learnt the fundamentals but I could have murded the single exam but took the two exams because my lecturer andvised me too. No regrets though.

    Then knock out the ROUTE exam. Forget about BSCI, it's been out for 10 years (I think) and the a little of the material is out of date. For example in ROUTE, IS-IS is being dropped and there is a stronger emphasis on IPv6.

    Knock out the SWITCH a month or two after you pass the ROUTE and by then the TSHOOT will be out, murder that and BANG... Your a CCNP (version 6 I think...)

    Anyway, thats my plan at least but would be honoured if you took my advice. I started my CCNP studies on Monday, already up to chapter three on the Route book because it so interesting!

    Here are my proposed exam dates:

    Monday 10th May: ROUTE
    Monday 12th July: SWITCH
    Monday 11th October: TSHOOT

    So if we put our heads down, We should be CCNPs this year...

    Just my $0.02

    Kind Regards,
    David
    Failure is a stepping stone to success...
  • DevilWAHDevilWAH The Bringer of Light Member Posts: 2,997 ■■■■■■■■□□
    ahh thrid time lucky, keeps wiping what i type and refreshing the window....

    Just to say I have just booked the SWITCH exam for later this month (nope not saying when). and all the books are out for the new CCNP topics. They seem very hands on which is nice, and on top of that they are updated to the new tecchnologies which is always nice.

    IF you are just starting out I can't see any reason to go for the old exams.

    But how ever you process good luck. :)

    and as David mentioned, very sorry to hear about you father, thoughts are with you.

    Oh and having looked at the BCMSN and the SWITCH books, I can tell you that the SWITCH just seems a few more topics on top of the BCMSN, so you could always use that book a a place to start.
    • If you can't explain it simply, you don't understand it well enough. Albert Einstein
    • An arrow can only be shot by pulling it backward. So when life is dragging you back with difficulties. It means that its going to launch you into something great. So just focus and keep aiming.
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