Intro and Question

Carpe JugulemCarpe Jugulem Posts: 17Member ■□□□□□□□□□
Good morning,

I'm pretty new to the Cisco world, but not that new to telecommunications equipment, in general. In the field I'm in, I have had the luxury of working on network alarms that pop up in commercial telecommunications applications. I'm in love with the concepts, so I figured it's high-time to do something with that passion I'm sure we all share.

So, I'm a thirty-something, hubby, father to two awesome kids, full time night shifter, and recent night school graduate... blah, blah, blah... I live in Texas these days, and it's really grown on the family and I! Well, except the heat!

Any way, so I'm going to go CCENT first. I think that will help me move along quicker as I tend to slack off without a kick in the @ss every now and then. I "so" want a lab because I love "tinkering." The more hands-on I have, the better.

So, budget aside for a minute... I was wondering what you all think of this kit:

Premium CCNA Security Lab Kit

I am planning on getting my CCENT, CCNA, CCNA Security, then CCNP. I would like to keep on going if possible, but my lab is really going to be the deciding factor as I don't have access to all the great equipment out there. So, is that kit a good start? Will be something good to build onto in the future?

Thanks for the help, and glad to have found a good forum for this type of discussion.

-CJ

Comments

  • NetwurkNetwurk Posts: 1,155Member
    It's an OK lab set, but way overpriced versus building one on your own piece by piece.
  • miller811miller811 Posts: 897Member
    I would not spend that kind of money to start out with.
    Pick up a couple of 2950 switches off of ebay or Craigslist for approx 50 a piece. Purchase a router or two for $50 a piece, (one capable of runing router on a stick for intervlan routing) and then also load and configure dynamips or GNS3 for a router lab. Then as you progress and move toward CCNP you can purchase a 3550 L3 switch....

    I purchased a lot of hardware to begin (and you need some real hardware) but it is so much easier to configure any routing combination with GNS3, play with it, wipe it, reconfigure it in a different format.

    Good luck, and you came to right place to learn and grow.
    I don't claim to be an expert, but I sure would like to become one someday.

    Quest for 11K pages read in 2011
    Page Count total to date - 1283
  • earweedearweed Posts: 5,192Member ■■■■■■■■■□
    miller811 wrote: »
    ,
    Good luck, and you came to right place to learn and grow.
    +1 This is a really good community where everyone is helpful.
    No longer work in IT. Play around with stuff sometimes still and fix stuff for friends and relatives.
  • hypnotoadhypnotoad Posts: 915Banned
    I think that hardware is worth about $350.
  • NetwurkNetwurk Posts: 1,155Member
    hypnotoad wrote: »
    I think that hardware is worth about $350.

    With one post, I think the guy probably works for the site he linked to and is trying to drum up business.

    But I could be wrong.

    :)
  • miller811miller811 Posts: 897Member
    Netwurk wrote: »
    With one post, I think the guy probably works for the site he linked to and is trying to drum up business.

    But I could be wrong.

    :)

    since Ciscokits advertises on this site.... I would hope you wrong....
    I don't claim to be an expert, but I sure would like to become one someday.

    Quest for 11K pages read in 2011
    Page Count total to date - 1283
  • Carpe JugulemCarpe Jugulem Posts: 17Member ■□□□□□□□□□
    No, I don't work there. Just found it online and sent the guy some emails asking what package he thought would work well for my goals.
  • peanutnogginpeanutnoggin Posts: 1,096Member
    Carpe Jugulem,

    Welcome to TE! You'll find plenty of threads around the forums regarding the building of a home lab. A quick poke around and I was able to find this one, this one, and this one. These should get you started. One of the biggest advantages to learning about Cisco is researching its gear and the home lab possibilities... you'll find this forum is more than willing to help out... you do have to do your part and put in the effort to do a little research. If you have questions... the members of this forum truly will offer some great advice! HTH. Best of luck to you in your studies and let us know if you have any questions...

    -Peanut
    We cannot have a superior democracy with an inferior education system!

    -Mayor Cory Booker
  • SomnipotentSomnipotent Posts: 384Member
    Good morning,

    I'm pretty new to the Cisco world, but not that new to telecommunications equipment, in general. In the field I'm in, I have had the luxury of working on network alarms that pop up in commercial telecommunications applications. I'm in love with the concepts, so I figured it's high-time to do something with that passion I'm sure we all share.

    So, I'm a thirty-something, hubby, father to two awesome kids, full time night shifter, and recent night school graduate... blah, blah, blah... I live in Texas these days, and it's really grown on the family and I! Well, except the heat!

    Any way, so I'm going to go CCENT first. I think that will help me move along quicker as I tend to slack off without a kick in the @ss every now and then. I "so" want a lab because I love "tinkering." The more hands-on I have, the better.

    So, budget aside for a minute... I was wondering what you all think of this kit:

    Premium CCNA Security Lab Kit

    I am planning on getting my CCENT, CCNA, CCNA Security, then CCNP. I would like to keep on going if possible, but my lab is really going to be the deciding factor as I don't have access to all the great equipment out there. So, is that kit a good start? Will be something good to build onto in the future?

    Thanks for the help, and glad to have found a good forum for this type of discussion.

    -CJ

    no offense to ciscokits, but their bundles are rediculously overpriced. granted they provide you training discs and labs to work with, it's not much bang for your buck.

    best strategy would be to purchase single routers and switches as you progress with your studies. ccent deals with small network environments so you would really only need two routers and two switches, all which can be had for under $200 on craigslist or ebay. as you move to ccna you can add another switch and two more routers which will give you a decent topology to work with. even with that you will will end up under $400.

    the key idea is here is to "grow" your network with your certs. i have a friend who bought a $9k lab for CCNA/CCNP/CCIE studies... he didn't pass the CCENT and gave up... i bought pieces from him to fill my lab, but goes to show, don't jump in the deep end if you don't even know how to tread.
    Reading: Internetworking with TCP/IP: Principles, Protocols, and Architecture (D. Comer)
  • NetwurkNetwurk Posts: 1,155Member
    No, I don't work there. Just found it online and sent the guy some emails asking what package he thought would work well for my goals.

    Cool.

    Hope we saved you from overpaying.

    :)
  • Carpe JugulemCarpe Jugulem Posts: 17Member ■□□□□□□□□□
    Thank you all very much. I'll definitely be putting my lab together, rather than buying a kit.
  • hypnotoadhypnotoad Posts: 915Banned
    Money aside, researching the products for the lab instead of buying a prepackaged kit can be both a blessing and a curse. On one hand, you'll probably buy the wrong thing a couple times - for example, the NM-1FE's dont work in a 2610xm (doh!). On the other hand, you'll learn the product lines more and how to research cisco's site to find the right stuff.
  • Carpe JugulemCarpe Jugulem Posts: 17Member ■□□□□□□□□□
    Yeah... I'd like to avoid the "d'oh!" factor whenever possible. :)

    Here's my proposed plan thus far... this, of course, after reading all of the above (thanks again):

    - 3 x 2620 XM's
    - 3 x Cat 2950's
    - 1 x Cat 3550
    - Probably need some WIC 1T cards...
    - Skeletek (Unless I can jack a closet from work)

    Whatddya'll think? Definitely open to suggestions...
  • bermovickbermovick Posts: 1,132Member
    That looks pretty good; perhaps add a WIC 2T card. The 3550 isn't really needed at CCNA level, so whether to get that now or wait depends on your plans after CCNA.

    I got CCNA with 2 2610's and 2 2950's. I've since added a 3rd 2950 and 2610XM. I still need the WIC 2T and 3550 myself.
    Latest Completed: CISSP

    Current goal: BS:CS at WGU
    Current class: Calculus 1
  • SomnipotentSomnipotent Posts: 384Member
    Yeah... I'd like to avoid the "d'oh!" factor whenever possible. :)

    Here's my proposed plan thus far... this, of course, after reading all of the above (thanks again):

    - 3 x 2620 XM's
    - 3 x Cat 2950's
    - 1 x Cat 3550
    - Probably need some WIC 1T cards...
    - Skeletek (Unless I can jack a closet from work)

    Whatddya'll think? Definitely open to suggestions...

    looks good. i agree with going the 2T route if you can, they're a little bit more, but you get two ports out of one wic slot. don't need more than 2 2950s, save the money for an extra 3550 when the time comes.

    you will not be disappointed with a skeletek so it's worth the purchase price. plus it makes things look neater.
    Reading: Internetworking with TCP/IP: Principles, Protocols, and Architecture (D. Comer)
  • Carpe JugulemCarpe Jugulem Posts: 17Member ■□□□□□□□□□
    looks good. i agree with going the 2T route if you can, they're a little bit more, but you get two ports out of one wic slot. don't need more than 2 2950s, save the money for an extra 3550 when the time comes.

    you will not be disappointed with a skeletek so it's worth the purchase price. plus it makes things look neater.

    I just read that somewhere, so I will definitely follow your advice on the 2950's. I read about some guy purchasing more than he needed, and ended up selling off all but two because he seldom used them. Good to know, and thanks!

    Oh, and being an ex-telecommunications tech grunt, I'm pretty **** about cable management. After Peanut posted up those links, and after researching that "show your lab" thread, it seems like a no-brainer to me. They are pretty sweet little units (Skeleteks, that is).

    Oh, one other question for you gents... I saw a pretty good deal (locally) on some 3640's... should I scoop-up one or two now, or just forget about them until I cross that avenue? Would the 3640s be a better option than the 2950, short term and long?

    Sorry about all the questions... I'm going to have to get some sleep soon as I've been up all day researching, studying and trying to come up with some type of checklist for all this stuff...
  • SomnipotentSomnipotent Posts: 384Member
    I just read that somewhere, so I will definitely follow your advice on the 2950's. I read about some guy purchasing more than he needed, and ended up selling off all but two because he seldom used them. Good to know, and thanks!

    Oh, and being an ex-telecommunications tech grunt, I'm pretty **** about cable management. After Peanut posted up those links, and after researching that "show your lab" thread, it seems like a no-brainer to me. They are pretty sweet little units (Skeleteks, that is).

    Oh, one other question for you gents... I saw a pretty good deal (locally) on some 3640's... should I scoop-up one or two now, or just forget about them until I cross that avenue? Would the 3640s be a better option than the 2950, short term and long?

    Sorry about all the questions... I'm going to have to get some sleep soon as I've been up all day researching, studying and trying to come up with some type of checklist for all this stuff...

    the 3640 is a router not a switch. you'll need the switches more. the 3640s can be had for like $60 and they have 4 NM slots but no WIC slots. good for frame relay switches and backbones, but that's about it. that's my opinion anyway.
    Reading: Internetworking with TCP/IP: Principles, Protocols, and Architecture (D. Comer)
  • NetwurkNetwurk Posts: 1,155Member
    I saw a pretty good deal (locally) on some 3640's... should I scoop-up one or two now, or just forget about them until I cross that avenue? Would the 3640s be a better option than the 2950, short term and long?


    A 3640 is a great option - if you need a router.

    A 2950 is a switch, so you can't compare the two.

    :)

    Long story short, you need both
  • Carpe JugulemCarpe Jugulem Posts: 17Member ■□□□□□□□□□
    Netwurk wrote: »
    A 3640 is a great option - if you need a router.

    A 2950 is a switch, so you can't compare the two.

    :)

    Long story short, you need both

    Man... haha! I meant to say "vs. the 2620 XMs," but it sounds like I might still stick to the same plan written before. Thanks again, fellaz!

    -CJ
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