My CCIE Journey Has Officially Begun.

jamesp1983jamesp1983 Member Posts: 2,475 ■■■■□□□□□□
I have decided that it is time to pursue the first goal I had when I entered IT, the CCIE. I know its going to be an EXTREME challenge, but I'm just pushing forward and trying to stay confident. I'm going to use this thread for tracking my progress throughout my CCIE journey. I purchased the INE Ultimate bundle last week and have been studying and labbing ever since. I'm still trying to figure out what the right balance of lab vs study is at this point, but I'm just reviewing all of the ATVOD material now (over 80 hours), to refresh myself. I'm open for any suggestions on how I should balance lab vs study time. I've been running Dynamips and working with my home switches while watching the videos as a way to get more hands on. I passed BCMSN, BSCI, and ISCW back in 2008, and wrapped up ONT in August of 2010. I have been working with the equipment at my job so that has kept me fresh on a lot of the info, but I'm still studying like I'm just starting out. I research topics in the videos that I don't really remember and that seems to be really helping. I will keep this updated as a motivator and also as a way to keep track of all that I have studied when it comes time for my final review. It feels great to finally get started on this path. My wife and I worked out a schedule and I'm going to try to hit 30-36 hours a week.

My resources:
-INE Virtual Lab
-The INE workbooks
-INE Written VOD
-Routing TCP/IP, vol I.
-Home lab (a few routers and some 3550s.)
-Cisco LAN Switching by Ken Clark
-Routing and Switching, Time of Convergence?
-My CCNP Library.
-Dynamips
-Cisco.com
-INE ATVOD 4.5


Should I buy Odom's exam guide? I think the Boson Exsim for CCIE will be the next addition.
"Check both the destination and return path when a route fails." "Switches create a network. Routers connect networks."
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Comments

  • reaper81reaper81 Member Posts: 631
    Welcome aboard!

    Focus on reading for the written, doing labs will help with understanding but reading is the foundation for the written and for your labbing later on. Get the certification guide and later Boson for prepping questions.

    Everyone has their own way of preparing but my opinion is that for written do 80% reading and maybe 20% labs. You will be busy enough with labs later on anyways.

    Good luck!
    Daniel Dib
    CCIE #37149
  • chrisonechrisone Senior Member Member Posts: 2,251 ■■■■■■■■■□
    Looks like you are missing some BGP, MPLS, & QOS reading materials. believe those are heavily covered as well.
    Certs: CISSP, EnCE, OSCP, CRTP, eCTHPv2, eCPPT, eCIR, LFCS, CEH, SPLK-1002, SC-200, AZ-900, VHL:Advanced+, Retired Cisco CCNP/SP/DP
    2022 Goals:
    Certs: EnCE (cert obtained), eCPTXv2 (in progress), SC-300 (in progress), AZ-500, SC-100
    Course: BC Security - Empire Operations 1 (completed), Zero Point Security - CRTO (course completed)
  • jamesp1983jamesp1983 Member Posts: 2,475 ■■■■□□□□□□
    reaper81 wrote: »
    Welcome aboard!

    Focus on reading for the written, doing labs will help with understanding but reading is the foundation for the written and for your labbing later on. Get the certification guide and later Boson for prepping questions.

    Everyone has their own way of preparing but my opinion is that for written do 80% reading and maybe 20% labs. You will be busy enough with labs later on anyways.

    Good luck!

    Thanks! That helps clarify things for me.
    "Check both the destination and return path when a route fails." "Switches create a network. Routers connect networks."
  • jamesp1983jamesp1983 Member Posts: 2,475 ■■■■□□□□□□
    chrisone wrote: »
    Looks like you are missing some BGP, MPLS, & QOS reading materials. believe those are heavily covered as well.

    I have the QoS and ONT Exam Guides so they should help. Thanks for the heads up.
    "Check both the destination and return path when a route fails." "Switches create a network. Routers connect networks."
  • TesseracTTesseracT Member Posts: 167
    Congrats on taking the big leap. I'm in the same boat and the moment but not expecting to sit the lab until the end of 2012 at the earliest (and likely much later considering life often gets in the way) but there's no rush, slow and steady wins the race here I've been told. My materials are the following so far for the written:

    CCIE Cert Guide 4th edition (this is my spanning tree root icon_lol.gif everything branches off from here) *read most of it, not all yet
    TCP/IP Vol 1 *read
    TCP/IP Vol 2 *read
    QoS Exam Gudie *read
    MPLS Fundamentals (Haven't got a copy of this yet. Heard mixed reviews)
    Halibi's BGP book (Haven't got this one yet either)
    Maybe a multicasting book such as Developing IP Multicast Networks.
    INE's ATC 4.5 with Brian McGahan
    INE's Vol 1 workbook (Seems to be overkill but I'm more than halfway through it now).

    Your list looks very similar. How are you going with Brian's ATC vids? I've been jumping around and watching a few vids here and there when it's relevent to my reading but overall I think I've watched < 10 of the 156. 80 hours of vids might take a while...
  • jamesp1983jamesp1983 Member Posts: 2,475 ■■■■□□□□□□
    TesseracT wrote: »
    Congrats on taking the big leap. I'm in the same boat and the moment but not expecting to sit the lab until the end of 2012 at the earliest (and likely much later considering life often gets in the way) but there's no rush, slow and steady wins the race here I've been told. My materials are the following so far for the written:

    CCIE Cert Guide 4th edition (this is my spanning tree root icon_lol.gif everything branches off from here) *read most of it, not all yet
    TCP/IP Vol 1 *read
    TCP/IP Vol 2 *read
    QoS Exam Gudie *read
    MPLS Fundamentals (Haven't got a copy of this yet. Heard mixed reviews)
    Halibi's BGP book (Haven't got this one yet either)
    Maybe a multicasting book such as Developing IP Multicast Networks.
    INE's ATC 4.5 with Brian McGahan
    INE's Vol 1 workbook (Seems to be overkill but I'm more than halfway through it now).

    Your list looks very similar. How are you going with Brian's ATC vids? I've been jumping around and watching a few vids here and there when it's relevent to my reading but overall I think I've watched < 10 of the 156. 80 hours of vids might take a while...

    I'm doing well with the videos. I'm on video 37 of the series. I have watched them in order. Keep in touch since it sounds like we're taking roughly the same path. Thanks man and good luck!
    "Check both the destination and return path when a route fails." "Switches create a network. Routers connect networks."
  • jamesp1983jamesp1983 Member Posts: 2,475 ■■■■□□□□□□
    I purchased the exam guide earlier today from amazon and watched a few more videos today. I'm the lead on a huge vsphere implementation/network redesign for a large customer so I'm getting to spend a lot of time on their Cisco 4507R, their edge equipment, 2960s, and 3550s. Their network is pretty large so it should be a good supplement to my studies. Also, started making flashcards in Mnemosyne.
    "Check both the destination and return path when a route fails." "Switches create a network. Routers connect networks."
  • jamesp1983jamesp1983 Member Posts: 2,475 ■■■■□□□□□□
    Read the first two chapters of the CCIE Exam Guide yesterday. Watched up to video 52 in the ATVOD, "RIP Triggered, RIP Validate Update Source". I also watched the RIB video in the Written Boot Camp section. Got about 13 hours of studying done total over the weekend because the wife had a friend down from NY.
    "Check both the destination and return path when a route fails." "Switches create a network. Routers connect networks."
  • TurgonTurgon Banned Posts: 6,308 ■■■■■■■■■□
    I have decided that it is time to pursue the first goal I had when I entered IT, the CCIE. I know its going to be an EXTREME challenge, but I'm just pushing forward and trying to stay confident. I'm going to use this thread for tracking my progress throughout my CCIE journey. I purchased the INE Ultimate bundle last week and have been studying and labbing ever since. I'm still trying to figure out what the right balance of lab vs study is at this point, but I'm just reviewing all of the ATVOD material now (over 80 hours), to refresh myself. I'm open for any suggestions on how I should balance lab vs study time. I've been running Dynamips and working with my home switches while watching the videos as a way to get more hands on. I passed BCMSN, BSCI, and ISCW back in 2008, and wrapped up ONT in August of 2010. I have been working with the equipment at my job so that has kept me fresh on a lot of the info, but I'm still studying like I'm just starting out. I research topics in the videos that I don't really remember and that seems to be really helping. I will keep this updated as a motivator and also as a way to keep track of all that I have studied when it comes time for my final review. It feels great to finally get started on this path. My wife and I worked out a schedule and I'm going to try to hit 30-36 hours a week.

    My resources:
    -INE Virtual Lab
    -The INE workbooks
    -INE Written VOD
    -Routing TCP/IP, vol I.
    -Home lab (a few routers and some 3550s.)
    -Cisco LAN Switching by Ken Clark
    -Routing and Switching, Time of Convergence?
    -My CCNP Library.
    -Dynamips
    -Cisco.com


    Should I buy Odom's exam guide? I think the Boson Exsim for CCIE will be the next addition.

    30-36 hours per week? That's 5 hours per day. Make sure you have time for your work and home duties. Good luck with the studies!
  • Forsaken_GAForsaken_GA Member Posts: 4,024
    Read the first two chapters of the CCIE Exam Guide yesterday. Watched up to video 52 in the ATVOD, "RIP Triggered, RIP Validate Update Source". I also watched the RIB video in the Written Boot Camp section. Got about 13 hours of studying done total over the weekend because the wife had a friend down from NY.

    I wouldn't recommend chain watching the ATC videos. I'd recommend breaking it into sections, and then doing the Vol. 1 labs for the sections you just watched. That way you have the hands on experience to reinforce what you just watched. That's what I've been doing for the last week, and it's helped quite a bit.
  • TurgonTurgon Banned Posts: 6,308 ■■■■■■■■■□
    I wouldn't recommend chain watching the ATC videos. I'd recommend breaking it into sections, and then doing the Vol. 1 labs for the sections you just watched. That way you have the hands on experience to reinforce what you just watched. That's what I've been doing for the last week, and it's helped quite a bit.

    Yup. Do it in bits one technology at a time. Too much information at once doesn't always help.
  • jamesp1983jamesp1983 Member Posts: 2,475 ■■■■□□□□□□
    Turgon wrote: »
    30-36 hours per week? That's 5 hours per day. Make sure you have time for your work and home duties. Good luck with the studies!


    My wife and I worked out a study routine that gives me enough time to have a little bit of time with her, some gym time w her as well (3x week), but I stay up pretty late. I only work 10 minutes from my house so I go home on lunch and study for around 40 minutes as well. My weekends are spent mostly studying and running the occasional errand. The wife has really been great about the whole thing.
    "Check both the destination and return path when a route fails." "Switches create a network. Routers connect networks."
  • jamesp1983jamesp1983 Member Posts: 2,475 ■■■■□□□□□□
    I wouldn't recommend chain watching the ATC videos. I'd recommend breaking it into sections, and then doing the Vol. 1 labs for the sections you just watched. That way you have the hands on experience to reinforce what you just watched. That's what I've been doing for the last week, and it's helped quite a bit.

    That's a good idea. I started getting the feeling that I should slow down and get a more in depth understanding of the technologies that I've covered so far. I just stopped watching the ATVOD to catch up on labbing and research last night. I have taken so many notes. I've almost filled an entire notebook after only 2 weeks. I've been googling as much as I ever have in my entire life as well. I've been using the LAN Switching and BCMSN guide to supplement my viewing. Jury Duty was a huge help in this dept.

    Do you think I should be labbing during my prep for the Written? I've heard conflicting information on that topic.
    "Check both the destination and return path when a route fails." "Switches create a network. Routers connect networks."
  • TurgonTurgon Banned Posts: 6,308 ■■■■■■■■■□
    My wife and I worked out a study routine that gives me enough time to have a little bit of time with her, some gym time w her as well (3x week), but I stay up pretty late. I only work 10 minutes from my house so I go home on lunch and study for around 40 minutes as well. My weekends are spent mostly studying and running the occasional errand. The wife has really been great about the whole thing.

    Sounds good. Well, take full advantage now and bust your ass getting that study counter across 100 asap. Then reevaluate.
  • jamesp1983jamesp1983 Member Posts: 2,475 ■■■■□□□□□□
    Anyone ever use Gigavelocity Rack Rentals?
    http://www.gigavelocity.com/rack-3-ine-rs-40-july-2011-c-759_8141.html

    The rates are reasonable.
    "Check both the destination and return path when a route fails." "Switches create a network. Routers connect networks."
  • reaper81reaper81 Member Posts: 631
    I've only used Gradedlabs which is INEs official partner. On weekdays you can get a 6-hour slot for around 15 tokens where 1 token = 1$. If you wait for deals you can get tokens for half the price which would mean around 7.5$ for a session.
    Daniel Dib
    CCIE #37149
  • jamesp1983jamesp1983 Member Posts: 2,475 ■■■■□□□□□□
    reaper81 wrote: »
    I've only used Gradedlabs which is INEs official partner. On weekdays you can get a 6-hour slot for around 15 tokens where 1 token = 1$. If you wait for deals you can get tokens for half the price which would mean around 7.5$ for a session.

    thanks. apparently, gigavelocity structured their rack to ine's standards.
    "Check both the destination and return path when a route fails." "Switches create a network. Routers connect networks."
  • TesseracTTesseracT Member Posts: 167
    I have a some tokens I bought from INE/Graded Labs a while back when they were having a 2 for 1 sale.

    Haven't even tested it out yet. For those actually in Pacific time it's not very convenient if you want labs on a weekday (almost double the price on the weekend).

    3am - No thanks
    9am - working
    3pm - working
    9pm - finally - if you want to waste half your money or lab 'til 2 in the morning

    Gigavelocity looks a bit better but still undecided if I'm going the token route or see if work will buy me the gear and let me set it up on a spare rack. So far I've managed to do the bulk of INE's workbook 1 on GNS3
  • TurgonTurgon Banned Posts: 6,308 ■■■■■■■■■□
    TesseracT wrote: »
    I have a some tokens I bought from INE/Graded Labs a while back when they were having a 2 for 1 sale.

    Haven't even tested it out yet. For those actually in Pacific time it's not very convenient if you want labs on a weekday (almost double the price on the weekend).

    3am - No thanks
    9am - working
    3pm - working
    9pm - finally - if you want to waste half your money or lab 'til 2 in the morning

    Gigavelocity looks a bit better but still undecided if I'm going the token route or see if work will buy me the gear and let me set it up on a spare rack. So far I've managed to do the bulk of INE's workbook 1 on GNS3

    Vol II is the killer. Few people have the time to do those at work and you are looking at 3 hour sessions regularly to do most of a lab exercise properly. Look at evening and all day weekend sessions.
  • jamesp1983jamesp1983 Member Posts: 2,475 ■■■■□□□□□□
    Turgon wrote: »
    Vol II is the killer. Few people have the time to do those at work and you are looking at 3 hour sessions regularly to do most of a lab exercise properly. Look at evening and all day weekend sessions.

    I have around 1400 tokens for INE/GradedLabs, but their timeslots aren't convenient. 3 hour sessions (at least) are going to demand another vendor.
    "Check both the destination and return path when a route fails." "Switches create a network. Routers connect networks."
  • TesseracTTesseracT Member Posts: 167
    Turgon wrote: »
    Vol II is the killer. Few people have the time to do those at work and you are looking at 3 hour sessions regularly to do most of a lab exercise properly. Look at evening and all day weekend sessions.

    Yeah in a twisted, evil sort of way I'm looking forward to torturing myself when I do reach that point icon_lol.gif

    I know I can get away with GNS3 now for Vol 1 (the switching part I just took notes without any configs though) but there's definately a crossroads where you choose to either build your lab or go with the rentals. Not quite there yet. Going through the MPLS vids in INE's new Advanced Classes on Demand at the moment. After that then some Vol 1 labbing and reading on MPLS and finally services and security will be all I have left. It's definately been a while since I've been over layer 2 and some of the IGPs so there's definately some major reviewing needed.
  • jamesp1983jamesp1983 Member Posts: 2,475 ■■■■□□□□□□
    TesseracT wrote: »
    I have a some tokens I bought from INE/Graded Labs a while back when they were having a 2 for 1 sale.

    Haven't even tested it out yet. For those actually in Pacific time it's not very convenient if you want labs on a weekday (almost double the price on the weekend).

    3am - No thanks
    9am - working
    3pm - working
    9pm - finally - if you want to waste half your money or lab 'til 2 in the morning

    Gigavelocity looks a bit better but still undecided if I'm going the token route or see if work will buy me the gear and let me set it up on a spare rack. So far I've managed to do the bulk of INE's workbook 1 on GNS3

    It'll be a lot more convenient if your work buys you the gear. I'll be extremely jealous. You are right about INE's times. They are extremely inconvenient. Gigavelocity's times are a bit more reasonable especially if you are on the east coast. My lab at home won't support all aspects of the CCIE studies and the wife isn't working so money is a little tight right now.
    "Check both the destination and return path when a route fails." "Switches create a network. Routers connect networks."
  • TurgonTurgon Banned Posts: 6,308 ■■■■■■■■■□
    I have around 1400 tokens for INE/GradedLabs, but their timeslots aren't convenient. 3 hour sessions (at least) are going to demand another vendor.

    Sure. Shop around.
  • TurgonTurgon Banned Posts: 6,308 ■■■■■■■■■□
    TesseracT wrote: »
    Yeah in a twisted, evil sort of way I'm looking forward to torturing myself when I do reach that point icon_lol.gif

    I know I can get away with GNS3 now for Vol 1 (the switching part I just took notes without any configs though) but there's definately a crossroads where you choose to either build your lab or go with the rentals. Not quite there yet. Going through the MPLS vids in INE's new Advanced Classes on Demand at the moment. After that then some Vol 1 labbing and reading on MPLS and finally services and security will be all I have left. It's definately been a while since I've been over layer 2 and some of the IGPs so there's definately some major reviewing needed.

    Personally I find note taking and reading the best foundation, then configuration. Vol 1 is fine, but after a taste of everything you really need the pain of a Vol II lab. It can take a week of toil if your study slots are rushed and infrequent to get through a Vol II lab. I find lab practice is like learning to play the piano..to play it well, be regular and spend hours doing it!
  • TesseracTTesseracT Member Posts: 167
    Turgon wrote: »
    Personally I find note taking and reading the best foundation, then configuration. Vol 1 is fine, but after a taste of everything you really need the pain of a Vol II lab. It can take a week of toil if your study slots are rushed and infrequent to get through a Vol II lab. I find lab practice is like learning to play the piano..to play it well, be regular and spend hours doing it!

    Well I started Vol 1 writing notes for each task in a simple word doc. It's mutated and transmorgrified to a 180 page beast now...

    Just checked the properties of the file:
    Words: 40776
    Total Editing Time: 8586 minutes

    Not sure how useful this is going to be for me later on as a review but it's helped me solidify a few of the topics, rather than just giving it a once over. For other topics like OeR I just left myself a little comment saying 'read up on this later' hehe. Guess I'm going to have to start a new one when I get to Vol 2! I might try One Note or some other note taking program when I get to that, I remember reading a thread about it in one of the other forums about what note-taking tools people use.
  • TurgonTurgon Banned Posts: 6,308 ■■■■■■■■■□
    TesseracT wrote: »
    Well I started Vol 1 writing notes for each task in a simple word doc. It's mutated and transmorgrified to a 180 page beast now...

    Just checked the properties of the file:
    Words: 40776
    Total Editing Time: 8586 minutes

    Not sure how useful this is going to be for me later on as a review but it's helped me solidify a few of the topics, rather than just giving it a once over. For other topics like OeR I just left myself a little comment saying 'read up on this later' hehe. Guess I'm going to have to start a new one when I get to Vol 2! I might try One Note or some other note taking program when I get to that, I remember reading a thread about it in one of the other forums about what note-taking tools people use.

    The killer is regularity on the CCIE. That is what takes you over the line. If you can be regular in your study habits and study at least every other day for 2+ hours, then you can tank it inside a year. For the rest of us a longer term programme is required! If you are a long termer like myself, my advice is obliterate during your first two years of study. If you can do so, the you can pass providing you can find a 6 month window to pull it all together.

    6 months from now..you will know what is achievable!
  • TesseracTTesseracT Member Posts: 167
    Turgon wrote: »
    The killer is regularity on the CCIE. That is what takes you over the line. If you can be regular in your study habits and study at least every other day for 2+ hours, then you can tank it inside a year. For the rest of us a longer term programme is required! If you are a long termer like myself, my advice is obliterate during your first two years of study. If you can do so, the you can pass providing you can find a 6 month window to pull it all together.

    6 months from now..you will know what is achievable!

    Cheers for the advice. I cracked Routing TCP/IP Vol1 last year when I sat the TSHOOT exam but thought the CCIE was unachievable for mere mortals. I didn't start taking it seriously until I met a CCIE snowboarding in Tahoe in Feb this year. He was just a normal guy who convinced me that it's possible (although he sat the V3 exam :)). So it's been 6 months of reading and labbing for me so far but I still head out every weekend and it hasn't taken over my life. My plan is to take the written before the end of the year and then decide on what sort of plan I can handle so you're right - 6 months from now I'll know what's up
  • TurgonTurgon Banned Posts: 6,308 ■■■■■■■■■□
    TesseracT wrote: »
    Cheers for the advice. I cracked Routing TCP/IP Vol1 last year when I sat the TSHOOT exam but thought the CCIE was unachievable for mere mortals. I didn't start taking it seriously until I met a CCIE snowboarding in Tahoe in Feb this year. He was just a normal guy who convinced me that it's possible (although he sat the V3 exam :)). So it's been 6 months of reading and labbing for me so far but I still head out every weekend and it hasn't taken over my life. My plan is to take the written before the end of the year and then decide on what sort of plan I can handle so you're right - 6 months from now I'll know what's up

    Keep at it, but keep your girlfriend or wife onside!
  • jamesp1983jamesp1983 Member Posts: 2,475 ■■■■□□□□□□
    I had my first INE lab session last night from 12am to 3:30am. (Wasted some time, had 6 hour session, but it was only 18 tokens) The equipment was extremely easy to access. I just started Workbook I. I've been running some small Dynamips labs and doing what I can with my home equipment. The purpose of this session was to mostly just acquaint myself with how INE does things (understand the diagrams, moving around, etc) vs Gigavelocity. I have a session with Gigavelocity tonight from 9pm to 12am. It was about $11.25 for a 3 hour block. Last night was an eye opener, but its nice to apply what you're reading about.
    "Check both the destination and return path when a route fails." "Switches create a network. Routers connect networks."
  • jamesp1983jamesp1983 Member Posts: 2,475 ■■■■□□□□□□
    I used GigaVelocity's INE rack rental last night for a 3 hour block. I couldn't find a way to open a telnet session to each device like you can in INE, but that's not a huge deal. I got through several of the labs without an issue. I had to manually load all of my configs from INE, but it was actually quicker than loading a saved config with INE. I'm going to try to do a ton of labbing this weekend before moving forward in my studies.
    "Check both the destination and return path when a route fails." "Switches create a network. Routers connect networks."
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