CCNA Security Achievement Unlocked!

IristheangelIristheangel CCIEx2 (Sec + DC), CCNP RS, CCNA V/S/R/DC, CISSP, CEH, MCSE 2003, A+/L+/N+/S+, and a lot more from mPasadena, CAMod Posts: 4,133 Mod
I've been studying for this exam for about a month and a half on-and-off and finally decided to sit the test. I wouldn't say that I was surprised I passed but I was surprised that I received such a high score. I'll admit that I didn't lab as much in CCP as I should have but it ended up being a non-issue since CCP is so easy to navigate through and fairly simple to "get." I used the newest 640-554 book and it had everything (and more!) of what one needs to pass the exam.

One thing I was actually disappointed in was the focus on CCP in the exam. I don't see too many professionals relying on CCP for security. ASDM is another matter but that was completely excluded from the exam and most of the book. I can't really fault the book authors because they don't choose the exam content but I would have liked to see more of it from Cisco.

Amusing sidenote: I was out late last night doing fun things that involved alcohol and a Halloween burlesque show so when I woke up for the test, I rolled out of bed in my PJS, hair a mess, and probably smelling like a used shot glass to go to the test (This is NOT the Iristheangel recommended test-prep). When I arrived, there were a few other test takers sitting in the waiting area. One of the guys asked me if I was on the TechExams forums and that he knew who I was (Yay! I'm popular on the internet).
To that random test taker: I hope you passed your test! I'm very surprised you could recognize me in my messy state! Rep to you!
BS, MS, and CCIE #50931
Blog: www.network-node.com

Comments

  • sratakhinsratakhin Member Posts: 818
    Congratulations! What was your score and what do you want to do next?
  • IristheangelIristheangel CCIEx2 (Sec + DC), CCNP RS, CCNA V/S/R/DC, CISSP, CEH, MCSE 2003, A+/L+/N+/S+, and a lot more from m Pasadena, CAMod Posts: 4,133 Mod
    My score was 927. I have to assist with upgrading our enterprise to Call Manager 9.0 so I've already started on CCNA:Voice since it's the most relevant in my life right now. I'm not sure whether or not I'll bother with the CCNA Wireless. I don't know much about it but I feel that wireless is one of those things that I don't need to know that much about to perform my duties as a network engineer. After Voice, I'll be going for the CCNP next year.
    BS, MS, and CCIE #50931
    Blog: www.network-node.com
  • sratakhinsratakhin Member Posts: 818
    Wow, that's impressive! How difficult was CCNA:Security compared to just CCNA?
    Good luck with your studies and job!
  • IristheangelIristheangel CCIEx2 (Sec + DC), CCNP RS, CCNA V/S/R/DC, CISSP, CEH, MCSE 2003, A+/L+/N+/S+, and a lot more from m Pasadena, CAMod Posts: 4,133 Mod
    There's a lot that is relevant to my job such as everything to do with ASAs, VPNs, ACLs, AAA, TACACS+, etc, but other things that were not so relevant such as the hundred or so pages going on about how to do everything through CCP. I felt like the CCNA gave me a good introduction to the basics of configuring a router and ASA for security so I can't fault it there but I was already implementing a lot of this weeks before I started studying for it so I had that advantage.

    Since a lot of the exam and coursework focuses on the GUI, I'd say that the test is much easier than the core CCNA exams. It's much more specific and even if you don't remember something verbatim while you're taking the test (or in real life), the GUI is simple enough to figure it out. That's a big advantage to the CCNA exam where if you didn't know something or didn't configure something in the right order, you just got that question wrong.
    BS, MS, and CCIE #50931
    Blog: www.network-node.com
  • ChooseLifeChooseLife Member Posts: 941 ■■■■■■■□□□
    Congrats on another victory! Well done!
    I woke up for the test, I rolled out of bed in my PJS, hair a mess, and probably smelling like a used shot glass to go to the test... One of the guys asked me if I was on the TechExams forums and that he knew who I was (Yay! I'm popular on the internet)
    That's hillarious... I'm picturing you in pajamas, with messy hair, hungover, etc walking into the test center, and someone going "Hey, you must be Iristheangel!" :D Have you checked if you are maybe popular on youtubes? :D
    “You don’t become great by trying to be great. You become great by wanting to do something, and then doing it so hard that you become great in the process.” (c) xkcd #896

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  • jdballingerjdballinger Member Posts: 252
    Congrats on the pass, and with a great score!

    Did you do much labbing for this, or was it primarily your hands on experience at work that provided that? I'm beginning to poke around with this as well and am curious whether I should be looking into purchasing an ASA or not.
  • IristheangelIristheangel CCIEx2 (Sec + DC), CCNP RS, CCNA V/S/R/DC, CISSP, CEH, MCSE 2003, A+/L+/N+/S+, and a lot more from m Pasadena, CAMod Posts: 4,133 Mod
    @Jdballinger - Work was my labbing. Without violating NDA, ASA questions were very irrelevant on the test. It was more CCP-centric so if you have a router with an up-to-day IOS image, you'll have the only lab you'll need to pass the exam.
    Now if you want to have a lab for REAL practical work environments, then go buy an ASA *and* a router. Practice establishing a VPN tunnel through the CLI and the GUI, practice enabling and configuring AAA, create various access lists and practice practice practice.

    @ChooseLife - It was funny. The proctor was running a little behind and he was asking the other people what schools they were from. This forum member said that he was from WGU and I was like "Oh wow! I am going there from my MS right now! I hope you're enjoying it!" To which he replied, "Oh you're on a forum called Tech Exams, aren't you? You're pretty popular on there." LoL. Then I suddenly became self-aware of how much of a bum I looked like in that moment. Random TE member - I swear I'm not homeless! ;)
    BS, MS, and CCIE #50931
    Blog: www.network-node.com
  • IvanjamIvanjam Member Posts: 978 ■■■■□□□□□□
    Congrats @ Iristheangel - great score! icon_thumright.gif
    Ha @ ChooseLife re: youtubes.
    Fall 2014: Start MA in Mathematics [X]
    Fall 2016: Start PhD in Mathematics [X]
  • AyvzAyvz Member Posts: 23 ■□□□□□□□□□
    fantastic...nice one!!icon_thumright.gif
  • IvanjamIvanjam Member Posts: 978 ■■■■□□□□□□
    ...Random TE member - I swear I'm not homeless! ;)

    @Iristheangel - let's see who else posts a pass in CCNA:S today :)
    Fall 2014: Start MA in Mathematics [X]
    Fall 2016: Start PhD in Mathematics [X]
  • IristheangelIristheangel CCIEx2 (Sec + DC), CCNP RS, CCNA V/S/R/DC, CISSP, CEH, MCSE 2003, A+/L+/N+/S+, and a lot more from m Pasadena, CAMod Posts: 4,133 Mod
    He was there for his A+. He told me he's only posted like 6 times on here so we'll see...
    BS, MS, and CCIE #50931
    Blog: www.network-node.com
  • GPITGPIT Member Posts: 24 ■□□□□□□□□□
    lol. At least now I know the back story. You did kinda have the "I just rolled out of bed look." At first glance I thought for a moment it was you but you looked just "off" enough to make me have doubts. Once you said you went to WGU then I knew for sure it was you. But just to be safe I still had to ask if you "post on TE." Small world. It was nice talking to you. I'm past 6 posts now!

    Oh, and didn't you have to take a picture? Your morning after is now etched in time.
  • IvanjamIvanjam Member Posts: 978 ■■■■□□□□□□
    Ha @ GPIT - congratulations on passing the A+! icon_thumright.gif
    Fall 2014: Start MA in Mathematics [X]
    Fall 2016: Start PhD in Mathematics [X]
  • IristheangelIristheangel CCIEx2 (Sec + DC), CCNP RS, CCNA V/S/R/DC, CISSP, CEH, MCSE 2003, A+/L+/N+/S+, and a lot more from m Pasadena, CAMod Posts: 4,133 Mod
    @GPIT - Yes! I did have to take a picture! My bedhead hungover shame will always be remembered by Cisco:


    It was nice to meet you this morning. I hope you did equally as well on your test. That testing center was certainly... um... interesting! Not only could I go there to take my test but I could also buy phone cards and get my green card renewed! Huzzah!
    BS, MS, and CCIE #50931
    Blog: www.network-node.com
  • paul78paul78 Member Posts: 3,016 ■■■■■■■■■■
    Great story and congratulations. That's quite an impressive score. Would you be willing to share your secret in the choice of libations for exam prep? I'm partial to gin martinis, would that work?
  • IristheangelIristheangel CCIEx2 (Sec + DC), CCNP RS, CCNA V/S/R/DC, CISSP, CEH, MCSE 2003, A+/L+/N+/S+, and a lot more from m Pasadena, CAMod Posts: 4,133 Mod
    My exam prep happened to be dealing with a ton of ASAs at work as well as using Profsim's network simulator (probably better for learning the command line than taking the test) and reading the new CCNA:Security book.

    As far as my "studying" last night, the burlesque show I was at had these wonderful chocolate vodka martinis. It's kind of a blur but I'm sure I got some great studying done!
    BS, MS, and CCIE #50931
    Blog: www.network-node.com
  • GPITGPIT Member Posts: 24 ■□□□□□□□□□
    @GPIT - Yes! I did have to take a picture! My bedhead hungover shame will always be remembered by Cisco:

    It was nice to meet you this morning. I hope you did equally as well on your test. That testing center was certainly... um... interesting! Not only could I go there to take my test but I could also buy phone cards and get my green card renewed! Huzzah!

    Your picture is kind of like a mug shot. :) I actually was going to ask you if all testing centers were like this one. The place was not what I pictured when I thought of a testing center, but they are open 7 days and always have free slots. So, so far so good. And I did good on the exam. I'm never thrilled when I miss any questions, but I passed!
  • RoguetadhgRoguetadhg CompTIA A+, Network+. Member Posts: 2,489 ■■■■■■■■□□
    Uh. It really does look like its a mugshot, Irish.

    Congratulations on the pass! I'm glad you got it done!

    I can't just let you get your cert while I'm wallowing around.
    In order to succeed, your desire for success should be greater than your fear of failure.
    TE Threads: How to study for the CCENT/CCNA, Introduction to Cisco Exams

  • broli720broli720 Member Posts: 394 ■■■■□□□□□□
    Congrats. Hope to sit for this exam around Christmas time.
  • lurker53lurker53 Member Posts: 7 ■□□□□□□□□□
    Grats on the good results!

    Any particular tips or general areas to apply extra focus on? Categories that you may have thought weren't that big of a deal when studying, but may have stumped you (not asking about specifics for obvious reasons).

    I'm planning on taking it within 1 month for some extra credit points in my class (AAS degree requirement), and my employer provides compensation for exams that I pass. So far I've got a GNS3 lab environment built up with some VMs for CCP and AAA, and I also picked up the 640-554 cert book (about 1/4 through it). The class is alright, the lectures tend to speed through things that the teacher deems outdated, but having access to the NetAcademy lab guides feels very helpful. I'm mostly studying on my own when I work during the night.
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